Southern Black-eyed peas, cooked down with the Holy Trinity, ham, Andouille sausages, ham hock, and Cajun seasonings, served over white rice, make for a traditional southern meal any time of the week or just on the New Year Holiday.
Southern Black-eyed Peas have a wide variety of cooking methods and ingredients here in the South. Some are very plain while others feed like a meal. Depending on what Southern state you are in is how they will be cooked. Sometimes even then, each recipe will be different.
For example, when I was a child, my stepmom would make them reasonably plain. However, let me tell you I loved them and would devour two to three bowls full with a side of her white cornbread. Yes, white cornbread! The real deal of the South. Not that sweet yellow cornbread or Jiffy mix.
I make a few variations of Southern Black-eyed Peas because I enjoy mixing things up a bit. However, this version is my favorite because it has tons of layers of Southern flavors. This Southern Black-eyed Peas recipe has a few optional ingredients. So feel free to leave them out if needed.
EQUIPMENT NEEDED FOR SOUTHERN BLACK-EYED PEAS
Cutting Board to chop ingredients
Sharp kitchen knife to chop the ingredients
Measuring cups and or spoons to measure ingredients
Dutch oven to saute, simmer and cook the recipe
Serving spoon to stir ingredients. I prefer a wooden spoon.
INGREDIENTS FOR SOUTHERN BLACK-EYED PEAS
One cup chopped yellow onion
1/2 cup of medium green bell pepper, diced
1/2 cup chopped celery, diced
Three cloves garlic, minced
1/2 pound Andouille sausage, sliced
One cup diced ham
One pound dried black-eyed peas, rinsed well, and picked through
One smoked ham hock
Two quarts of chicken stock
One and 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper, or to taste
One teaspoon Cajun seasoning, or to taste, optional
Three bay leaves
Additional water or chicken stock, if needed.
Two cups cooked collard greens, optional
4 cups cooked rice, to serve
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Do I need to soak the Black-eyed peas beforehand? It is not necessary to pre-boil and soak black-eyed peas. The peas will cook tender without that step if you follow the instructions. It is important to rinse and sort the Black-eyed peas before cooking them.
Can I use chicken broth instead of stock? You can but be mindful that broth has a much heavier salt content and make your black-eyed peas over salty with the addition of the ham, andouille sausage, and ham hock. I prefer the stock instead.
Can I use Creole seasoning instead of Cajun seasoning? Believe it or not, while somewhat similar, they are day and night. If you prefer a Creole seasoning, feel free to use it but again, watch your salt intake as most Creole seasoning has a heavier salt content.
Do I have to add the collard greens? No, that is an optional ingredient I add around the holidays for tradition and, of course, a nice layer of flavor. You can omit or add another green of choice.
Does the type of onion matter? Yes, you want a robust onion to season your beans. Using sweet onions seems to alter the flavor too much.
What if I cannot find Andouille sausage? This is an easy fix. You can always use a smoked sausage in place of the Andouille sausage.
What can I substitute for them if I cannot find ham hocks? You can use a ham bone or smoked turkey instead of the smoked ham hocks.
Do I add the cooked rice to the pot or serve it on the side? Do not add the rice to the pot. Either spoon the peas over the rice or serve on the side for best results.
Southern Black-eyed Peas
- Cutting Board to chop ingredients
- Sharp kitchen knife to chop the ingredients
- Measuring cups and or spoons to measure ingredients
- Dutch oven to saute, simmer and cook the recipe
- Spoon to stir ingredients. I prefer a wooden spoon.
- 2 tablespoons bacon grease or oil
- 1 cup yellow onion chopped
- ½ cup bell pepper green, chopped
- ½ cup celery chopped
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- ½ pound Andouille sausage sliced
- 1 cup ham diced
- 1 pound black-eyed peas rinsed well, and picked through
- 1 large smoked ham hock meaty
- 2 quarts chicken stock + more if needed
- 1½ teaspoons Kosher salt or to taste
- ½ teaspoon black pepper freshly cracked
- 1 teaspoon Cajun seasoning or to taste
- 3 bay leaves
- 2 cups collard greens pre cooked, optional4
- 4 cups long-grained rice pre cooked, to serve
- Gather all equipment and ingredients before getting started.
- In a Dutch oven, add the yellow onion, green bell pepper, and celery to the bacon grease or oil and cook just until tender. Add the garlic and cook another minute or so. Add the diced ham and Andouille sausage and cook until lightly browned.
- Next, add the black-eyed peas, cook, stir for 2 minutes, then begin to add the chicken stock slowly, stirring a little at a time; bring to a boil. Add ham hock, Kosher salt, pepper, Cajun seasoning, and bay leaves.
- Reduce the Dutch Oven to a medium simmer and partially cover, cooking for about 1 to 1-½ hours or until black-eyed peas are creamy and tender. Add the cooked collards (optional) and additional chicken stock if necessary to slightly thin out. Pull any meat off the ham hock bone and return to the black-eyed peas; taste and adjust seasonings as needed.
- Serve over cooked long-grain white rice and with cornbread.
- Collard greens have been a staple vegetable of Southern U.S. cuisine for many years. They are often mixed with other similar green leafy vegetables, such as kale, turnip greens, spinach, and mustard greens.
- Authentic Cajun Red Beans with Rice are the Monday supper tradition in Louisiana. This Authentic Red beans with rice recipe will keep exceptionally well in the refrigerator and are just as good a couple of days later.
- Cajun-Style Crispy Onion Rings was proudly featured on slapyamama.com. They’re so damn good! You’ll seriously love how easy it is to make these Cajun-Style Crispy Onion Rings.