For the superstitious among us, there is one absolute must for New Year's Day.
The black-eyed peas, collard greens, and cornbread represent coins, cash, and gold. Now, why am I wasting my time on pennies when there are Benjamins and gold to be had? As Tevye would say, "Tradition, tradition!"
Black-Eyed Peas and Greens Recipe
8 ounces black-eyed peas, rinsed and picked over
1 lb collard greens, washed and chopped into strips
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 cup chopped smoked ham or country ham, cut into thin strips
1 shallot, minced
1 red bell pepper, diced
5 cloves garlic, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
1/3 cup dry sherry
1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup butter (optional)
Bring a large pot of water to boil. Add the peas and greens. Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat the oil in a saute pan over medium heat. Add the ham, shallot, bell pepper, and garlic, and saute. Season with salt and pepper. Deglaze the pan with the sherry and add the honey. Add 1/2 cup of the cooking liquid from the greens.
Drain the peas and green, and combine them with the ham mixture in a bowl. Add the butter, stirring until it melts.
Serve with cornbread.