by Heather Schmitt-Gonzalez / Saturday, January 1, 2011
Encouraging fortune in the New Year with a bowl of Hoppin' John ...and reinforcing it with Skippin' Jenny
But anyway...my whole point of talking about New Year's of years past was to ponder the fact that we never had any New Year's food traditions growing up in my house. So, I just went ahead and made some of my own. I suppose I didn't really make some of my own...I borrowed them from other people...but you know what I mean. One I basically credit myself with is drinking Mimosa's all day on the first of the year. That's a fun one. As a matter of fact, I'm drinking one right now ☺. The popping of a cork at midnight is an age-old tradition...but I like to make sure that I have another one or two to pop throughout the day, as well.
It is traditionally eaten on New Year's Day...and of course there are variations, but for the most part it is a stew-like dish that consists of black-eyed peas, greens, and a smoked pork product. Mmmmmm...smoked pork. The black-eyed peas are symbolic of coins and symbolize good fortune in the new year. By mixing in the greens, you're adding more wealth (green=money) to the pot! By leaving three beans in the bottom of your bowl, a person can ensure luck, romance, and fortune in the new year*.
- 1 lb. dry black-eyed peas, soaked overnight
- 1 lb. smoked sausage, sliced on the bias
- 1 lg. onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled & smashed
- ½ c. brown rice
- 1 (10.5 oz) can diced tomatoes w/ green chiles
- 12 oz. collard greens, washed and chopped
- ½ tsp. kosher salt
- ½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
- 5 c. chicken broth or rich chicken stock
- crushed red chiles
- balsamic vinegar
Michiana-based food, drink, and travel writer with a fondness for garlic, freshly baked bread, stinky cheese, single malt Scotch, and Mexican food—who believes that immersing herself in different cultures one bite at a time is the best path to enlightenment.