We wear old lockets and tuck raggedy hankies in our back pockets. On our Big Day, we wear something old, new and blue. We extinguish candles on the day we’re born, dreaming up a wish for another year of life. And we toss away pennies to rest at the bottom of park fountains, all for the sake of a dream, a desire, a wish.
I’m not very superstitious, but long ago I learned from my grandmother – on New Year’s Day, you eat black eyed peas and corn beef. No logical explanation or nutritional relevance. It’s just one of those rituals that keeps black eyed peas on grocer shelves.
As humans, we do some quirky things in hopes to curve fate in our favor. But in the spirit of the New Year, I’ll suggest that we have more power to curve our fate than wishful thinking. Honestly, as far as resolutions go, I’d like to write for this blog more, I’d like to make improvements on our house and I’d like to help my husband plot our first garden. More importantly, I’d like to relinquish worry and find joy in every wonderful moment I have with family, friends and colleagues. But I know there’s no old hankie or ample helping of black eyed peas is going to make those changes for me. And whether your change is achieving inner peace, picking up a new hobby or kicking an old habit, I encourage you to go after your goals in 2013.
Take a risk, trust your instincts, arm yourself with confidence. Keep moving, keep improving, and keep growing. Love more, stress less. Eat well and take care of body and spirit. Don’t worry about what others think. Be kind regardless of how others treat you. Be determined to make this year great. That’s how I’ve resolved to enter 2013.
Still, I made a New Year’s Hoppin’ John, so I got that bowl of black eyed peas to make Mama (my grandmother) proud. If your resolution is to save money this year, this is a very economical meal (especially if you buy your peas dry). If your goal happens to be shedding some weight, this is also a great recipe to have around. If cooking more at home is on your list, then this is a very easy recipe that’s hard to destroy.
So, go after those resolutions, trade out luck for some confidence.
Hoppin’ John for the New Year
- 2 tablespoons of butter
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 green pepper, chopped
- 2 cloves of garlic, diced
- 1 16-ounce can of whole tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons of creole seasoning (I used Emeril’s Essence)
- A pinch of fresh or dried thyme
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Two cups of black eyed peas, soaked and cooked
- 2 cups of cooked brown rice
Directions: You’ll want to take care of your black eyed peas first – soak them for at least 8 hours. Cook the peas with 3-4 inches of water covering them at a simmer for about 30 minutes, or until desired tenderness. Drain and set aside. In a large pot, melt your butter and cook the onion with the garlic until translucent. Add the green onion and continue to cook for 5-7 minutes. Add tomatoes and use a potato masher to break them up. Add your spices and the remaining ingredients, including the black eyed peas. Simmer for 20-30 minutes. Serve over cooked brown rice. Top with cheese.
Oh, and if your resolution is to be a better spouse – this is a great hubby pleaser! Just see below.