Hoppin’ John Salad for a Lucky New Year

A salad spin on the traditional New Year’s Day dish

Hoppin’ John Salad to start your New Year off right!

Even if cornbread, collards and blackeyed peas with bacon or ham weren’t reputed to bring one wealth, luck and overall prosperity in the the year to come when eaten on New Year’s Day, I’d still enjoy eating them all. Hoppin’ John is the component of the  New Year’s meal from the American South that brings prosperity, and if you save some for leftovers the following day, it becomes “Skippin’ Jenny”, which demonstrates your commendable frugality and further increases your chances of manifesting that prosperity.

We though we’d try a salad variation of Hoppin’ John, and since it’s a bean salad, it definitely keeps well and even improves for a next-day reprise. There’s one collard leaf in there, less for flavor and more for tradition, though I love any extra green in a salad like this. You could also omit the ham for a still-totally-flavorful vegetarian version. 

HOPPIN’ JOHN SALAD

2 cups blackeyed peas, soaked overnight
1 collard green leaf, rib removed and finely chopped
3 red bell peppers, roasted and chopped
3 stalks celery, finely diced
1/4 cup flat-leaf parsley, minced
3 green onions
2 thick sliced of ham, diced into 1/2 inch cubes

VINAIGRETTE

1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup sherry vinegar
1 small shallot, minced
juice and zest of 1/2 lemon
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 dashes hot sauce (optional)

Rinse the soaked peas. Cover peas with 2-3 inches of water and bring to a boil, cooking for 30 minutes. Drain and set aside to cool. Shake all the vinaigrette ingredients together in a jar, set aside.

Once beans have cooled, toss all remaining ingredients together and serve, preferably with cornbread on the side. If you want to pull out all the good-luck-tradition stops, place a coin underneath each plate or in the serving dish itself.

— posted by Anne

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