The World’s Best Hoppin' John Recipe
The title pretty much tells it all
2 ½ cups Dried Black-eyed Peas
2 cups Uncooked Long-grain White Rice
2 large Ripe Red Tomatoes, Chopped
1 pound Thick-cut Slab Bacon
1 meaty Ham-hock or Seasoning Pork
1 large Yellow Onion, Chopped
1 medium Vidalia Onion, Chopped
1 medium Bell Pepper, Chopped
4 cups Chicken Broth
1 stick Unsalted Butter
1/3 cup loosely packed Light Brown Sugar
¼ BBQ sauce (sweet, ketchup-base type is best)
1 teaspoon Louisiana-style Hot Sauce
1 teaspoon Garlic Powder
1 Beef Bullion Cube
1/4 teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes
Salt and Black Pepper to Taste
Sort and clean dried peas. Soak peas for about one hour, rinse, and drain. Place black-eyed peas in a large pot over medium-high heat and cover with cold water. DO NOT salt water and bring to a vigorous rolling boil. Remove pot from heat. Cover and let it stand about an hour and a half. Drain and rinse beans in cool water.
Set aside one strip of bacon. Using your BACON BOSS, cook the remaining bacon on grill, basting with BBQ sauce until slightly crispy. Remove to plate covered with paper towels and drain. Let bacon cool and then chop into small pieces.
Using a skillet, cook the one piece of bacon that was set aside until it is about halfway done, using medium-low heat. Add and melt the butter in the pan with the bacon, then add the bell pepper and yellow onion. Cook slowly until the onion is nearly clear, add the bullion cube and dissolve in the butter while stirring. Add a small amount of water, then mix in the brown sugar and dissolve. Once bullion and sugar are both dissolved, set skillet aside.
Using a large pot, add together the black-eyed peas, tomatoes, ham hock, Vidalia onion, and red pepper. Add chicken broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cook for about 2 hours.
Remove ham hock and cut meat into bite-size pieces. Return hock meat to pot. Stir in the bacon/butter/bullion/sugar mix from the skillet and mix well, stir in the rice, add the garlic powder and hot sauce, cover, and cook 20 to 25 minutes or until rice is tender and liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat, top with BBQed bacon pieces and season to taste with salt and pepper.
Makes 8-10 generous servings.
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