Although many people may say that the tradition of eating black eyed peas on New Year’s Day is a Southern thing, they were actually first domesticated in West Africa and many families across the US have a tradition of eating them on New Year’s Day. Here in the Tacoma area you will find that black eyed peas are on sale in most stores because of this tradition. In the early times of our country there were a lot of precautions taken due to superstitions and many of these superstitions helped to form many of our traditions. Eating black eyed peas on New Year’s Day is thought to help bring you prosperity and good fortune in the new year. Below you will find the steps to make a vegan version of the black eyed peas with a little extra kitchen witchery and kitchen witch cooking lore. These steps are also shown in their corresponding photos in the slide show included with this article.
Step 1 - You will need to gather your supplies. To make these vegan black eyed peas you will need a crock pot, knife, cutting board, large spoon, regular spoon, strainer, spoon rest, bag of black eyed peas, onion, onion powder, garlic powder, minced garlic and salt.
Step 2 - Put the black eyed peas in a strainer and look through them. Make sure there are no small rocks, peas that don’t look ok, or other foreign items in them. When they are dried and packaged sometimes these things can get in them. Once your sure that your strainer only contains black eyed peas rinse the peas under cool water. Toss them around in the strainer and even get your hands in with them if need be to make sure that they are all clean.
Step 3 - Take your clean black eyed peas and put them in the crock pot. Cover them with water so that the water sits an inch or two above the peas. You can also turn the crock pot on now. The best setting on most crock pots for this will be on high for 4 hours. Crock pots come in many shapes and sizes and may cook slightly differently.
Step 4 - Now that the peas are started go ahead and chop up the onion. How much onion you put in will depend on your taste but most people prefer to use a whole onion. The onion should be roughly the size of your fist and you can use either white or yellow. In the photo in the slide show you can see that this onion has been diced but is in large pieces. Once it is chopped up, add the onion to the crock pot.
Step 5 - Some people may tell you not put salt in the peas until they are fully cooked because it will give them a tough texture and they are right, putting the salt in now will toughen up the skin on your peas. If you choose not to put it in now your black eyed peas could become more like split peas once they are cooked. Use about a palm full of salt. Think about how you want your year to turn out, do you want to have tough skin so that things to get to you and cause you stress or do you want to fall apart like the split peas. Make your peas strong. Don’t forget to throw a pinch of salt over your left shoulder to keep evil away.
Step 6 - Add into the crock pot about a palm full of onion powder and garlic powder. If your intent on measuring the spices its about a table spoon of each. Of course this is to taste and everyone has different taste buds.
Step 7 - You can pick up minced garlic in a jar at most of our local grocery stores. Although it would be more traditional to use whole garlic it can be difficult to mince. Add into the crock pot about a table spoon of minced garlic. Garlic is used in many charms and spells due to its correspondence with health, speed, endurance and courage. Adding these things to your new year will certainly lead to good things.
Step 8 - Give the crock pot a stir but be sure to stir it deosil (clock wise). If you stir it widdershins then your are moving backwards into the new year rather than forward. Its never suggested to stir any pot widdershins as it is unlucky.
Step 9 - Wait about 2 hours and check on your peas. Since crock pots all seem to cook a little differently some may find that their peas are nearly completion and others may find them to be about half way done. Go ahead and give them a stir again. Making sure to move them deosil. Your whole house should smell amazing right now.
Step 10 - For most crock pots it has been about 4 hours now and your black eyed peas are complete. Give them another stir and double check that they are complete. If they are go ahead and serve them up. They have a great flavor and go with just about anything but be sure that if your eating them on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day (depending on your family tradition) that you don’t couple them with a meat like chicken as chickens scratch backwards, you don’t want to be counter productive. Serve your peas alone or with bread or other items. It is said that even if you only eat a spoon full that it will b enough to bring good things to your new year.