This recipe is a comforting and heartwarming soup that wow's with flavor! Black-eyed peas (beans, cow peas) are full of calcium and protein and inexpensive. You can be assured that you are eating something that is great for the body, while comforting the soul!
In this recipe I used the quick soak method for the peas. You can however, soak them overnight according to the package directions if you wish. This Black Eyed Pea Soup recipe keeps well in the refrigerator for 5 days and it also freezes really well, which is great for a quick lunch warm up or a substantial and healthy dinner - all you need is a pan to heat it in. You can also turn this into the famous Hoppin' John recipe by adding rice to the pot until it's cooked through and turning up the chili heat!
8 cups warm water
1 lb. of dried black-eye peas
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 large yellow onion
4 large garlic cloves, roughly chopped
2 large jalapeno Chile peppers, seeded, finely diced
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
1 large smoked ham hock or turkey legs (meaty ones)
2 tbsp. tomato paste
12 cups chicken stock (or a combo of stock and water)
2 tsp. kosher salt
1. Start out by bringing the black eyed peas to a boil in a large pot. Boil for 2 minutes, then turn off the heat and let them sit for 1 hour. Drain and set aside.
2. While the peas are soaking, heat the olive oil over a medium flame in a large pot. Add the onions, jalapeņos, red pepper flakes and garlic. Cook until the onions are opaque, approximately 8 minutes. Add the tomato paste and blend in with a wooden spoon until melted. Add the smoked ham hock or turkey leg, the soaked black eyed peas and stock. Stir to combine and bring to a simmer. Cook for approximately 1 hour or until the peas are tender, yet firm to the bite (al dente.)
3. When the peas are cooked, remove the ham hock or turkey leg and let them cool down enough to handle. Then, remove the meat from the hocks or legs, chop into small pieces and add it back to the pot. Taste the soup and season it with more salt and/or red pepper to your liking. You can make this recipe as mild or as spicy as you wish by adjusting the red pepper flakes and the amount of jalapeņos.
Serve with toasted bread and enjoy!