Monday, January 02, 2012

My Crock Pot is Already Hoppin' in the New Year!

Check out the Hoppin' John I made in my crock pot for our New Year's Day dinner yesterday. (The picture to the left is what it looked like when it was a little over half way done cooking, before I fished out the ham hocks and added the greens and andouille. See other photo below.)

It was DELISH, and I hope it will bring health, wealth, and happiness in 2012 as tradition predicts. :-)


Crock Pot Hoppin' John

1 lb. dried blackeyed peas (I used Rancho Gordo Snow Caps here)
2 tablespoons olive oil (up to 1/4 cup)
2 medium onions, diced
2 large stalks celery, diced
1 large green pepper, seeded and diced
2 medium carrots, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon dried thyme
2 bay leaves
pinch of cayenne, to taste
4 cups chicken broth (up to 6 cups--enough to cover)
1 (10.5-ounce) can Rotel tomatoes with chilies
2 smoked ham hocks
1/2 pound collard greens or kale, chopped
1 pound andouille or smoked sausage, sliced

Served over steamed rice (white or brown, as you prefer).

You should start by soaking the beans overnight, but if you don't have time, bring them to hard boil for ten minutes, turn off the heat, cover, and let soak in the water for an hour, then drain, and continue with the recipe.

In a large skillet, heat the olive oil and saute the onions, celery, green pepper, and carrots over medium heat until the onions are translucent (about 10 minutes). Add the minced garlic, salt, pepper, thyme, bay leaves, and cayenne, and cook for another minute or two.

Add the soaked or parcooked beans to the crock pot along with the sauteed veggies, chicken broth, Rotel tomatoes, and ham hocks. Cook on low for 8-12 hours or until beans are tender. Fish out the ham hocks and cool until you can handle them. Pull off any bits of ham, shred, and add back to the pot. Chop the greens and add them and the smoked sausage pieces to the pot. Cook on high for another 30 minutes before serving over steamed or dirty rice.

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