Recipe Of The Week ~ HOT BLACK-EYED PEA DIP
Southern superstition holds that people who eat black-eyed peas on New Year’s Day will be blessed with a year’s worth of good luck. But why, exactly, are black-eyed peas lucky — and what’s the story behind the tasty tradition? Here’s what you need to know:
There are a couple popular legends about how and why black-eyed peas came to symbolize good fortune in the U.S.:
- According to folklore, the Union Army raided the Confederate Army’s food supplies during the Civil War. They took everything edible the soldiers had except for the peas and pork, believing they were meant for animals and not for humans. The Confederates were “lucky” to have the remaining food to get them through the cold winter.
- Another legend holds that slaves ate black-eyed peas on January 1, 1863, the day the Emancipation Proclamation went into effect, because they were all they had. This, according to the story, is why black-eyed peas have been eaten on every New Year’s Day since.
Hot Black-Eyed Pea Dip
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 small onion, diced
- 1/2-1 tablespoon finely chopped pickled jalapenos
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
- 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 1/3 cup sour cream
- 1 (10-ounce) can Rotel diced tomatoes and green chilies, drained
- 1 (15-ounce) can seasoned black-eyed peas, drained
- salt and pepper
- 1/2 cup shredded Mexican cheese or cheddar
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Melt butter in a pan and add onion. Cook until soft.
Add remaining ingredients to pan EXCEPT shredded cheese. Stir to evenly mix and remove from heat. Check for seasoning and add salt and pepper to taste.
Transfer dip to a greased cast iron skillet or baking dish. Sprinkle shredded cheese on top.
Place in oven and bake for 20 minutes or until warm and cheese is melted.
Serve with tortilla chips.