How to Make Tasty Hopping John
Hopping John. This Southern staple serves up a generous helping of comfort and tradition. We use thick-cut bacon to get the perfect amount of smokiness, as opposed to a ham hock. A ham hock can, at times, overpower the dish.
Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Hoppin' John, also known as Carolina peas and rice, is a peas and rice dish served in the Southern United States. It is made with black-eyed peas (or red cowpeas such as iron and clay peas in the Southeast US) and rice, chopped onion, and sliced bacon, seasoned with salt. You can cook Hopping John using 8 ingredients and 4 steps. Here is how you cook that.
Ingredients of Hopping John
- Prepare 1 pound of dried black-eyed peas.
- Prepare 1 of small smoked ham hock (about 1/2 pound).
- It’s 2 of bay leaves.
- You need 2 cloves of garlic, smashed and peeled 10 cups water.
- You need 1/2 pound of spicy chorizo sausage or spicy Italian sausage.
- You need 1 cup of rice.
- Prepare 1 teaspoon of salt.
- You need 1 cup of sliced scallions (6 to 7).
Some recipes use ham hock, fatback, country sausage, or smoked turkey parts instead of bacon. Hoppin' John is a basic, simple black-eyed pea stew. I kept it extremely pared down, and when I made it yesterday I had a hard time not adding bright red bell pepper, big pieces of torn kale, and canned diced tomatoes. All of these are acceptable, of course, but I wanted to keep it basic and unadorned.
Hopping John instructions
- Soak the black-eyed peas overnight in water to cover by 2 inches. Drain well..
- In a large pot, combine the drained black-eyed peas, ham hock, bay leaves, garlic and water. Bring to a boil, reduce to a high simmer, partially cover and cook until the peas are almost tender, about 45 minutes..
- Meanwhile, remove the casings from the chorizo or prick the sausage in several places with the tines of a fork. Fill a medium skillet with about 1/8 inch of water. Add the sausages and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Cook the sausages until cooked through, about 10 minutes. Set them aside and discard the cooking juices. When cool enough to handle, cut the sausages into 1/2 inch dice..
- Add the sausage, rice and salt to the pot, recover and cook until the rice is tender, about 20 minutes. Stir in the scallions and bell pepper about 10 minutes before the rice is done. If desired, pull off any meat from the ham hocks and add to the pot. Discard the bay leaves..
This easy version of Hoppin' John, the beloved southern dish of rice and black-eyed peas, uses canned peas and instant rice, and is ready in less than an hour. John is best known for his southern culinary expertise and his stone-ground grits and cornmeal. He is the author of four cookbooks, including Hoppin' John's Lowcountry. The origins of the name "Hoppin' John" are slightly less clear. Some say an old, hobbled man called Hoppin' John became known for selling peas and rice on the streets of Charleston.