Delicious, comforting and warming soups are just what we all need during the cold winter months. Cold weather in January calls for a lucky New Year's black-eyed pea dish. Black-eyed peas are thought to bring prosperity and good luck for the New Year. Eating black-eyed peas with smoked sausage, veggies and fresh spices gives them so much more flavor.
To save on time, instead of soaking dried black-eyed peas, you can use canned or even frozen. However, I encourage you to use the dried beans! Top this soup with homemade croutons for added crunch and top with crème fraiche to add scrumptious creaminess.
- 1 French baguette
- Olive oil
- Preheat your oven to 425 degrees F.
- Cut the French baguette into crouton-size pieces.
- Place on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Using your hands, toss to coat.
- Bake in the oven for 6 to 8 minutes, until slightly brown and crunchy.
- Set aside.
Black-eyed pea soup
- 1 pound dried black-eyed peas
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 pound smoked andouille sausage, thinly sliced
- 1 onion, chopped
- 4 celery stalks, chopped
- 1 small fennel bulb halved lengthwise, cored and chopped
- 3 carrots, peeled and chopped
- 1 red bell pepper, seeds and stem removed, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped
- 1 bay leaf
- 6 cups chicken stock
- Crème fraiche
- Finely chopped fresh flat leaf Italian parsley
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
- Sort the black-eyed peas and place them in a large bowl. Cover with cold water, remove any floating peas and soak overnight.
- Before cooking, drain and rinse the peas.
- In a large Dutch oven pot, heat the olive oil and brown the sausage slices for about 8 to 10 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.
- Add the onion, celery, fennel, carrots, red bell pepper and garlic to the pot. Sauté for 15 to 20 minutes.
- Add the black-eyed peas, chicken stock, bay leaf, and thyme. Bring to a boil and then simmer covered for about 1 hour until the peas are tender.
- Add the sausage back into the pot and cook for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Remove the bay leaf and add the salt and pepper according to taste.
- Ladle into some bowls and garnish with homemade croutons, a dollop of crème fraiche and sprinkle with fresh parsley.
Rachel's suggested wine pairing
This hearty, down-home soup gets a little kick from the smoked andouille sausage — so pair this dish with a fruity, low-tannin red. Try a Barbera which has deep color, is full of flavor, but has very little tannic structure. Also try a Tempranillo which has enough body but won't overpower the soup.