Looking for a tasty Southern black eyed peas recipe for New Year’s? Make yourself a pot of this spicy black eyed pea soup with ham.
Alright, I’m going to officially apologize once and for all for the numerous soup posts – past and future. I’m warning you right now that from now until oh say, March 1st, there will be quite a lot of soup recipe posts. There. I’ve said it. I have cleared the air. I’m not going to apologize for it again.
Over a year ago, my husband and I had dinner with another couple at Char in Jackson. My husband ordered a bowl of their soup of the day – black-eyed pea soup. My husband is a big black-eyed pea lover (the legume; not the band), so it wasn’t any surprise that he thought this soup was anything short of amazing. I have to admit, I am not the biggest black-eyed pea lover and I thought it was pretty darn tasty. Not long afterwards, he asked me to recreate the recipe. Of course, Char isn’t going to hand out their recipes to just anyone. So I set out to find a recipe that was pretty close.
I got my inspiration from Emeril and went from there. I don’t know if this is exactly like the soup we had that night (I mean heck; it was over a year ago!). But after a few modifications of my own, the result is a hearty, smoky, and slightly spicy dish that will warm you up even on the chilliest of fall nights.
This is a great way to use up leftover ham. I used ham hocks to season the soup, but if you have a hambone or two you can use that instead. Pair this soup with a good chewy piece of bread (we had homemade rosemary bread courtesy of Michelle at Brown-Eyed Baker. Stay tuned for that recipe) and a bottle of red wine and you have got yourself a meal.
Black Eyed Pea Soup
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 cup diced onions
- 1/2 cup diced leeks
- 1 medium 1 cup green bell pepper, diced
- 1 stalk 3/4 cup celery, diced
- 3-4 cloves minced garlic
- 4 ham hocks or ham bones
- 1 pound dried black eyed peas
- 2 1/2 quarts chicken stock
- 2 bay leaves
- 3/4 teaspoon Creole or Cajun seasoning
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 1/4 cups diced cooked ham
- Heat oil in a large stock pot over medium high heat.
- Add onion, leeks, bell pepper, and celery. Cook until slightly softened, about 5 minutes.
- Add garlic, ham hocks or ham bones, and black eyed peas. Sauté for five minutes.
- Add chicken stock and bay leaves. Bring to a boil.
- Cover pot and simmer for two hours, stirring every 30 minutes.
- Remove ham hocks or ham bones and discard. Add remaining ingredients.
- Simmer until ham is heated through, about five minutes.