Happy New Year Y’all!

Don’t worry, I haven’t become Paula Deen… but I do have a confession. Deep down inside, beneath my half Japanese exterior hides… a country girl. I grew up a military brat (Dad was a US Marine) in the great southern town of Tallahassee, Florida. If you’ve never been there, Tallahassee is much more like Georgia or Alabama than Florida. Strangely, I live much further south (in Ft Lauderdale) now, but it is much more “Northern” down here. Weird.

Anyway, black eyed peas are a very traditional Southern fare for New Years Day. Ingesting the little black and white beans are supposed to bring you good luck. Some say that the beans resemble coins and this is why they bring you wealth in the new year. Although I don’t think they look even remotely like coins, I still feel the need to eat them on New Years Day, with homemade Southern Cornbread. Don’t want to mess with the Southern traditions!

After all of the heavy holiday feasting, I’ve done a bit of a healthy twist on the beans and made it into a cold bean salad. I wrote the recipe with canned black eyed peas, but I prefer to use dried black eyed peas that are soaked and cooked with a ham bone, which is what I did here.
Hope everyone out there has a Happy and Healthy New Year!

Black Eyed Pea Salad Recipe

2 can black eyed peas, drained and rinsed
1 large tomato, diced
1 bell pepper, diced
1/4 c red onion, diced
3 tbsp parley, chopped
2-3 tbsp rice wine or red wine vinegar
2-3 tbsp olive oil

1. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and stir gently to combine. Taste and adjust the vinegar, salt and pepper accordingly. Let sit at room temperature for half an hour to let the flavors meld together.

Makes 6 Servings as a side dish

Southern Cornbread Recipe
(adapted From Oprah’s Website)

2 cups yellow or white cornmeal , preferably stoneground
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups buttermilk
2 large eggs , beaten
1/4 cup vegetable oil , preferably sunflower, plus additional for the pan

1. Position a rack in the center of the oven. Generously oil a 9- to 10-inch cast-iron skillet (or a 9-inch cake pan) and place it on the rack. Preheat the oven to 450°F.

2. Whisk the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together in a large bowl to combine. Make a well in the center. Whisk the buttermilk, eggs, and oil in another bowl until the eggs are well combined. Pour into the well and stir just until the batter is moistened — do not overbeat.

3. Remove the hot skillet from the oven and pour in the batter. Bake until the cornbread springs back when pressed in the center, 15 to 20 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes, then turn out onto a plate or serve directly from the skillet.

Makes 8 Servings



  • VeggieGirl 10 YEARS AGO

    HAPPY NEW YEAR!! Hooray for black-eyed peas & cornbread :-)

  • Sherra 10 YEARS AGO

    YUMMY!! I’m as southern as they in Texas and I love your twist on Black eyed peas! I might have to make a run to the store. ;) Happy New Year!

  • ashley 10 YEARS AGO

    yum look fabulous! happy new year candace! can’t wait to see what comes out of your kitchen in 2009!

  • peabody 10 YEARS AGO

    Oh skillet cornbread…mmm.
    Happy New Year.

  • Hallie 10 YEARS AGO

    Happy New Year. I love cornbread, and wow does yours look great. Now all I need is that cast iron skillet and I’d be all set…I know the taste wont be the same but is there anything you need to add/subtract from the recipe to make it in a regular baking dish?

  • Gin 10 YEARS AGO

    I never thought of serving cornbread with my black-eyed pea salad. YUMMY!!! This looks like the perfect combination.

  • Pam Arendall-Arnais 10 YEARS AGO

    Honey chile! A woman after my own heart (again). Growing up in SC we had our black-eyed peas w/rice (Hop-n-John) and collards every New Years. I still eat them even though I HATE the collards. This year we mixed southern cuisine with cuban cuisine. It was…interesting.

  • Chris Widmer 10 YEARS AGO

    Happy New Year from Dubai, United Arab Emirates!
    Love your blog and hooked on the stories. For which Four Season Hotel did you work?

    Best regards, Chris

  • Fabu Stuff 10 YEARS AGO

    We do lentils rather than the black eyed peas. That is the Italian good luck tradition.

  • My First Kitchen 10 YEARS AGO

    My only experience with black-eyed peas has always been a bowl of unsalted mush that pretty violently activated my gag reflex. I’ve avoided them ever since I was allowed to eat what I wanted. I think it might be time to be a grown-up though and try this version. It seems like it’d be MUCH better.

Recent Comments

  • I visited your blog after a long time today and was so thrilled to see all these new posts and the new design. As always, your food looks gorgeous.
  • The best!
  • wow great pictures! the filling sounds really interesting.. I have lots of leftover egg whites that I've been wanting to use up...I'm definitely making them! thanks for the recipe : )
  • I did have this salad when we visited the Philippines! It was certainly delicious and very fulfilling. Although this dish is more Japanese in origin, that restaurant gave it its own twist. The Filipinos really have a good palate for excellent food! Anyway, thank you for the recipe. I will surely give this a try!
  • Absolutely mind-blowing. I tried doing spoons once.....do your spoons have a rounded bowl or a flat surface. Did many break if you were trying to push it in a little to make it have a little depth.

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