Hoppin’ into the New Year

December 28, 2013

Hoppin John

Hoppin’ John is one of my favorite dishes, and it’s something that really shouldn’t be confined just to the first day of the year. For those of you who have never heard of Hoppin’ John, it’s a traditional Southern dish made with rice and black eyed peas, and when eaten on New Year’s Day, it is supposed to bring good luck and prosperity for the year. It is generally served with greens. The black eyed peas are supposed to resemble coins, and the greens add to the year’s prosperity and wealth due to their green color (you know, the color of money). Sometimes cornbread also gets into the action, given its golden color (again, the color of a different kind of money). While I’m not sure about all that, I am sure that creamy black eyed peas mixed with the saltiness of bacon and spiced up with some andouille and pepper makes taste buds happy and fills up bellies. (more…)

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Tropical flavors, crisp wine, sunny afternoon

May 17, 2012

Upon receiving my bounty of salmon last week, I knew just what I wanted to make with it. Earlier in the week I had picked up a copy of Saveur magazine on a whim. It promised delightful Corsican foods and bread recipes that I could make. Buried deep inside the issue, though, was a gem of an article on Senegal feasts, with recipes ranging from fritters and stews to magnificent salads. Upon seeing these salads I headed right back out to the store, picking up the ingredients and making them that evening. (more…)

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Curried Black Eyed Peas with Plantain

May 3, 2011

Curried Black Eyed Peas with Plantain

Looking for a dinner that transports you to the Caribbean, warms you up like comfort food, and is still healthy? Yeah, I didn’t think so — that would be an odd request to make of dinner. But, even if you weren’t looking, it’s a great feeling to have, and it’s exactly what Post Punk Kitchen’s Curried Black Eyed Peas delivers.

I’ve read about her book, Appetite for Reduction: 125 Fast and Filling Low-Fat Vegan Recipes, a couple of places, and I was intrigued. I’m the furthest thing you can find from a vegan, but once in a blue moon on accident I’ll make something vegan, and I like it. So it’s been an area I’ve thought about dabbling in. I just get scared off by recipes that include nutritional yeast and tempeh.

One day a friend of mine mentioned she had been using this cookbook and loved it, but then she pointed me toward the site. I spent the better half of the day trying to decide what I would cook that night. Did I want to go crazy and throw “gluten free” in the mix? Well, that’s what I ended up doing. (more…)

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