out of 5
Great stuff!January 01, 2009
I read the previous review of this article. I did not have some of the problems the previous reviewer had. This is very flavorful Hoppin' John, some of the best ever (and it's an annual tradition with us), with just the right amount of heat. I made the recipe as stated, except that I used a few small Anaheim peppers in place of the 1/2 green pepper and thus omitted the jalapeno. I figured the tomatoes with peppers would have enough heat especially given the addition of Creole seasoning (cayenne pepper), and that was a correct assumption. There's still plenty of zing without the jalapeno. The peas should NOT be soaked. The whole point of cooking them with the ham bone, bay leaf, onion, and garlic is to have them soak up the flavors as they hydrate. 2 to 2 1/2 hours seemed to be too long to cook the black eyed peas. Mine were simmering just over an hour and a half before they were almost TOO cooked and slightly mushy. I'd start monitoring the peas for doneness after about an hour. They should be firm still, but not ""crunchy"". Some of this probably depends on the pot you use, the heat level, etc. Mine were on medium to low simmer. I did not have any sticking-to-the-pot issues at all. Having a nice thick-bottomed pot may have helped. (Ahh, the joys of good cookware!) I had all the other ingredients chopped up and in a bowl together and ready to dump into the rice all at once and the spices measured out and ready to go in a smaller separate bowl; the rice was on simmer / low heat at that point, and I turned up the heat to medium - high (7 to 8 of 10), stirring intermittently until the stuff was warmed through (about 5 to 10 more minutes -- remember, your peas have cooled by this point and you're adding uncooked veggies, so it takes awhile to get the enormous amount of Hoppin' John heated up to the right temperature), and then added the ham and green onions. If you're looking for a great, moderately spicy Hoppin' John recipe to ring in the new year, give this one a try. It's a keeper!
6 of 7 people found this review helpful.