It is a tradition in the South to eat black eyed peas and collard greens on New Year’s Day to bring you luck for the coming year- the peas are supposed to represent coins and the collards are the color of money so the dish- called Hoppin’ John- will bring you wealth and luck in the New Year.  I have to be honest, while all of that sounds great, and I would love some luck and fortune in 2012, I really can’t stand collard greens and I am not too fond of black eyed peas either.  With that being said, here is the recipe for Hoppin John that I will be making today. Collards are usually served on the side, but I am not sure I can bring myself to make them- we will have to see.


  • 1 1/2 cups of black eyed peas
  • 4 cups of water
  • 1 lb ham hocks
  • 1 onion chopped (I like using a white onion the best, but any onion will work fine)
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 1/2 cups long grain white rice
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (because every dish should have some cheese in it- it is just better)


Put all of the ingredients except for the rice and cheese into a pot and cover with water and bring to a boil.  Then reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for an hour and a half.  Then remove the ham hock and cut the meat into pieces.  Return the pieces to the pot and add the rice.  Cover the pot and cook until the rice is ready- about 20 to 25 minutes.  Serve with the cheese sprinkled on top.

Here is what it is supposed to look like although I doubt mine will be this pretty.







I am including a recipe I found on for collard greens.  Again, I really dislike them, but if I were to make them- this looked pretty yummy.


  • 2 large potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 3 bunches collard greens – rinsed, stemmed and thinly sliced
  • 4 slices bacon
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup red wine vinegar


Place potatoes in a large pot with enough water to cover. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Before the potatoes are finished, add the collards to the pot.

Place bacon in a deep skillet over medium-high heat. Cook until evenly browned, about 10 minutes. Remove bacon to paper towels to drain, and saute the onion in bacon grease until tender. Drain onions of grease, and add to the greens. Crumble in the bacon, and stir in the wine vinegar. Simmer over low heat until greens are tender, about 1 hour.

 I hope these bring you luck and fortune, and I am looking forward to all of the fun baking and cooking in 2012.  Happy New Year!!

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