A long-held Southern tradition is to eat black-eyed peas and greens on New Year’s Day.
According to Southern Living, “Southern food researcher John Egerton’s Southern Food: At Home, On the Road, In History, black-eyed peas are associated with a ‘mystical and mythical power to bring good luck’ and have been a Southern staple for more than three centuries. As for collard greens, they’re green like money and will ensure you a financially prosperous new year. And isn’t that what we all want anyway?”
Black-eyed peas are often served with cornbread to represent gold, but if cooking this once a year item seems overwhelming, we’ve found a few places where you can dine out and keep the tradition going.
Cracker Barrel – multiple locations
The restaurant will offer black-eyed peas and a staple on the menu is collard greens throughout the year.
Loveless Cafe – 8400 Highway 100, Nashville
The longstanding cafe known for its biscuits, did you know they serve 10,000 biscuits a day, that would be 3.6 million a year, will serve black-eyed peas and greens on New Year’s Day.
Perry’s Steakhouse – 5028 Aspen Grove Drive, Franklin
For a limited time, the steakhouse will offer black-eyed peas and cabbage as a side until January 2.
And if you’d like to make your own black-eyed pea dish, check out these 15 black-eyed pea recipes. A common way to eat black-eyed peas is in the Hoppin’ John dish. The earliest recipe can be found in an 1847 cookbook, A Carolina Housewife, written by Sarah Rutledge, according to modernfarmer.com. Most recipes for Hoppin’ John call for cooking the black-eyed peas with rice, pork (usually fatback or bacon) and seasonings. Some variations include chopped onions and hot sauce.