Every year I see post after post on social media talking about Hoppin’ John’s followed by the inevitable “What are Hoppin’ John’s” questions. Well Hoppin’ John’s in their true fashion are a southern, southeastern to be more exact, New Years traditional food. Personally, I like to eat it year round. It is filling, easy to make, and in true southern ways, it is greasy and bacony! The recipe changes depending on who you ask, however I was raised in Charleston, South Carolina, and while I know the long, home made version of this, my recipe here will be the one you do if you don’t want to spend the day cooking. So let me start with saying, if you want to spend the night soaking peas, and an hour cooking rice be my guest. My New Year Day is better spent playing with the kids and shooting fireworks!
While this is a great New Year’s dish, it is a great meal year round.
- 1 1 lb Pack of Bacon
- 1 Can of Black Eye Peas Rinsed
- 1 Red Belle Peppers
- 1 Large Onion
- 1 cup sliced Mushrooms
- 2 Cloves of Garlic
- 3 bags of cook in bag Rice
- Cook all of the bacon and place in the refrigerator to cool while cooking the rest of your ingredients
- Save 2/3 of the bacon grease
- Cook rice according to package instructions
- While Rice is cooking dice onion, garlic, bell pepper, and mushrooms
- Add leftover grease to large pan
- Add onion, garlic, bell pepper, and mushrooms to grease and saute for or 5 minutes or until tender
- Leave all grease in pan
- Add rinsed black eye peas to the veggies during the last minute of sauteing
- Add cooked rice to the pan with the sauteed veggies and peas
- Once bacon has cooled crumble or cut into 1 inch piece
- Mix in bacon
- Stir fully while on low heat for 5 minutes
Again, you can always cook your peas and rice the long home cooked way, the outcome may be ever so slightly better. On regular days when I cook this I will often use regular rice. I have only home cooked the peas once, and the outcome was so minimally better that I decided not to go that route again. This is a dish we cook at least once every couple of months. Tasty, filling, not all that healthy, but we could do worse! I hope you enjoy. If you aren’t use to southern greasy food, this may not be your thing, and that is ok! If you like southern bacon flavored dishes though, give it a try!