Start 2011 w/ Greek Black-Eyed Peas, Onions & Greens

Count us among those who celebrate the New Year with black-eyed peas. Many people, especially in the southern United States, believe you can bring good luck by eating this flavorful legume on New Year’s Day. We figure it’s always worth trying. Besides, we like black-eyed peas.

Here’s a black-eyed pea dish we like to share this time of year: slow-cooked black-eyed peas with onions, tomatoes, and wild greens. It’s Greek. And it comes from Jim Botsacos, a chef and partner at the critically acclaimed Greek restaurant Molyvos and the Italian eatery Abboccato, both in New York. (Click here to go to the recipe.)

Black-eyed peas are a staple in Greece. And this dish involves a cooking method known as traditional lather style. It comes from the Modern Greek word for olive oil: lathi. Basically, the ingredients are cooked slowly on the stove in a rich olive oil-based sauce.

In this particular recipe, red onions are braised in extra virgin olive oil until they’re soft and translucent. Next come chopped tomatoes, garlic and more EVOO, followed by cooked black-eyed peas. Botsacos adds greens such as Swiss chard, kale, mustard greens, or dandelions. Fresh spinach gets folded-in at the end to give the dish “a fresh vibrant appearance and flavor.”

You can also go to our chef blog to see a black-eyed pea recipe from the Greek island of Crete.

Eat up – and here’s to a happy and prosperous 2011!

Bon appétit,

Claude S. Weiller
Vice President of Sales & Marketing
California Olive Ranch