Well being from North Carolina I grew up with a traditional New Years Eve meal!
Black Eye Peas, Turnip or Collard Greens and Cornbread! It just wasn't right to bring in the New Year without those 3 things on the menu! Black eye peas represent good health and the greens represent money and well you just have to have cornbread with those two things :) I cheat and make cornbread from the packages at the store, my cornbread just doesn't turn out all that good if I try to make homemade corn bread!
You can buy canned black eye peas or make your own from dried peas (which is what we do for the sake of saving a bit of money). Greens can be made many different ways as well. Below are my two recipes I use for both items...
Black Eye Peas
1 onion chopped and sauted
1 teaspoon of minced garlic
1 teaspoon of salt
2 cups of dried peas
8 cups of water
1 ham hock or fat back
After you saute the onions and garlic add peas and water, Bring to a boil and boil one minute. Turn off and let sit for 1 hour. Then cook on medium low heat for 3 hours. If the peas start to dry out, add boiling water to the pot *Cold water will make the peas crack an turn to mush.
How to Wash Collard Greens
Fill clean sink 2/3 full with cold water. Immerse greens, in batches, in water; swish greens gently to remove any grit.
Makes: 12 servings, about 2/3 cup each
3 pounds fresh collard greens
12 slices Bacon, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups water
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
WASH collard greens, removing all grit. Remove and discard hard stems. Place greens together in small bunches; roll up. Cut crosswise into wide strips; set aside.
COOK bacon in large skillet on medium heat to desired crispness. Remove bacon from skillet with slotted spoon, reserving 3 tablespoons of the drippings in skillet. Set bacon aside. Add onion and garlic to drippings; cook and stir until tender.
ADD greens, water, sugar, salt and crushed red pepper to skillet. Reduce heat to low; simmer 45 minutes to 1 hour or until greens are tender, stirring occasionally. Stir in bacon.