Eating black-eyed peas on New Years Day is a Southeastern tradition. The practice of eating black eyed peas dates back to the Civil War. Peas were first planted to feed livestock. It was later eaten by slaves as a main staple food. Sherman, my very not so favorite person, came through the South on his rampage and burned crops or stole crops along the way. Since the pea was “saved” the Confederates used this food as their main source of substance. This has made the black-eyed pea “lucky” and a Southern tradition to have on the very first day of the year for luck all the year through.
Whether this works or not is of no concern for our pig, Pickles. This is her most favorite veggie and is served to her with plenty of the soupy juice that comes with cooking black-eyed peas. The slurping noises she makes make the chickens come running. It is very entertaining to watch as they try to stick their heads in the bowl along with her pink snout to grab a pea. If you love a pig, feed her peas. Cooking peas from fresh or frozen takes a LONG time. Field peas and snaps are a good choice in the frozen section. I cook mine for about 3 1/2 to 4 hours. So plan ahead! (Some people add a slice or two of bacon or ham… don’t tell Pickles.)