Ageists, step to the side - who says that an old banana can't be the sweetest thing you've ever put in your mouth? With a luxe combination of bananas, butter, brown sugar and booze, this recipe proves the naysayers wrong. Dead wrong.
Black Eyed Peas with Ham Hocks and Smoked Sausage
A Dirty Girl’s New Year’s Resolution
Hello, ladies AND tramps. You’re all welcome here, this is your home for all things relating to sexy, food and fun with a splash of sarcasm and cynicism. As it’s day one of a new year, I’m feeling the gray and humbling effects of last night’s evil diversions. It was wilder than that dream I had with Cassandra and Eric Ripert. I mean, just un-fucking-forgetable. The dancing was obscene, the champagne was appropriately exorbitant and that lobster bisque made me all tingly down there. Yah, I asked for more. If fact, I stood on my chair and screamed “Give it to me again!” Yes I did. Multiple times…if you know what I mean. Anyway, now, I kind’a need something a little more down to earth, you know, to soak up the excesses…that I can eat on the couch.
First off, your behavior was abhorrent. I was pretty sure that five minutes into your escapades, you were already trying to deep throat the spoon for the lobster bisque. Second of all, your bill on NYE was about as high as the cost of your bail. You should be ashamed of yourself. And third and most importantly, why is my underwear all the way across the room wrapped around a can of spray cheese? I’m pretty sure I had champagne goggles on and thought it was triple cream brie.
Oh, THAT’S how you wanna play? First of all, I cannot be responsible for your kinky psycho-sexual relationship with a can of spray cheese. I’m dirty, but I draw the line at canned cheese. As to my bail, drop it, OK? Every girl has a run in with a police officer who refuses to let her go at least once in her life. And lobster bisque should be made love to in whatever mad, passionate way I see fit. Last night, my tonsils and spoon had a connection. A deep, satisfying, multifarious connection.
Ugh, I think we need to stop talking about your “connections” and explore this eating on the couch situation a little further – the world is a little too fucking bright and cheery for my liking, new year or no.
Indeed. I see no reason to be overly optimistic. Plus, it’s an election year for god’s sake. We’re going to need to make extra great food this year to make it livable.
Well, I know that it’s gauche right now to laud the resurgence of comfort food as the “it” thing and make black eyed peas our first meal of the New Year, but don’t get it twisted. Regardless of what the bevy thinks is cool right now, I’d be lapping up bowls of this stuff right now like a kitty with a dish of cream. There is nothing that’ll quell this shit storm of a hangover better than some black eyed peas and rice. Let’s make it happen.
Fuck the bevy. Bring it.
Black Eyed Peas with Ham Hocks and Smoked Sausage
1 lb. of black eyes peas
4 ham hocks
1 lb. of smoked sausage (andouille, kielbasa or polish sausage)
1 green bell pepper, cut into 1 inch chunks
1 jalapeno, halved and deseeded (optional)
1 large onion, cut into 1 inch chunks
3 stalks of celery, cut into 1 inch chunks
5 cloves of garlic
2 bay leaves
- Pick through the black eyed peas like you’re purging your friend list on Facebook. You want to lose any shriveled peas or the occasional rock you might find in the mix. As a side note, anything shriveled should generally be rejected as a candidate to be anywhere near your mouth. Moving on. Add the perfect peas to a large bowl, fill with cool water and let soak for at least 2-3 hours.
- While the peas soak, prep your veggies. Plunk the onion, bell pepper, jalapeno, celery and garlic into a food processor or alternatively, finely dice. Or alternatively, get some sucker to finely dice for you.If you are using the food processor, just this once break all those rules your mother and Mario Batali told you about pulsing the veggies in the food processor and just blitz the shit out of them. The veggie puree will literally melt into the sauce for the black eyed peas, a nice trick for any fussy bitches who like to pick veggies out of the meals that you’ve labored over for hours and hours. For shame.
- Add your veggie slush to a large stock pot with the ham hocks, bay leaves and enough water to cover, about 10 cups. Simmer the mixture until the ham hocks are extremely tender and the meat falls off the bone. This is one time that its good for the meat to fall off the bone, and this should take about 3 hours.
- Remove the ham hocks from the pot and set aside to cool. When they are able to be appropriately fondled, remove the meat from the bones and shred. And for the love of god, do NOT trim the fat off those perfect ham hocks. You’re gonna need that fat to get you through the long winter and girl, today is not the day to start a diet, no matter what the gym around the corner wants you to think.
- Drain the peas and add to the pot with the veggies and ham hock stock. Let them simmer into sexiness, about 30 minutes.
- Now for the sausage goodness (HA! Any dish that takes advantage of hot, smoked sausage is a winner, right?) Be gentle when you’re whipping it around though – even a dirty girl has to be kind to her assets. Gently cut the sausage into small, bite size pieces. We’ll let you decide the definition of “bite-sized”.
- Add the sausage and ham hocks to the peas and cook until warmed through and the sauce thickens up a bit, about 15-20 minutes.
- Serve with white rice and sliced scallions for garnish.
- Skip the soaking of the black eyed peas and start with steps 2-4 as listed above, adding the vegetables, hocks, bay leaves and about 8 cups of water to a pressure cooker. Lock the lid and cook under high pressure for 45 minutes. Release pressure naturally.
- Remove hocks, shred meat and set aside.
- Pick through peas, rinse and add the unsoaked darlings to the pot with the ham hock broth and veggies. Lock the lid and cook under high pressure for 10 minutes. Release pressure naturally.
- Add the sliced sausage and shredded ham hocks to the pot and let simmer until warmed through and sauce thickens a bit. Remember: a good thick sauce makes a sexy pair of ham hocks even more desirable.
Crock Pot Method (8 hours)
Feel like cooking, but unable to stray from the bathroom for too long? Make the peas in a crock pot for a true set-it-and-forget-it (while-you-go-pray-to-the-porcelain-god) kind of meal:
- Follow steps 1-4, adding the hocks, veggies, bay leaves and enough water to cover the hocks to your crock pot. Cook for 3 hours on high while the peas soak.
- Use three hours to figure out the origin of mysterious substance stuck in your hair and how to quell that incessant banging noise in your head.
- When the peas are finished, drain and add to the crock pot. Turn the heat to low and let simmer gently until tender, about 5 hours.
Leave out the ham hocks and sausage entirely and replace with a can of Ro-Tel (diced tomatoes and jalapenos) and a splash of red wine vinegar. Whoever said vegan dining was synonymous with drivel was smoking crack.