Blackeye peas and braised cabbage are two foods which are typically eaten on New Year’s Day here in Louisiana. My dear Cajun next door neighbor — who was just a little suspicious — always made sure we had these foods as they represent good luck and wealth for the new year. Most grocery stores have deep cardboard containers of cabbage for sale in late December. I found a few remaining very large heads of cabbage in January. I love cabbage; who can pass up a nine-pound cabbage for 55 cents? But they need to be cooked soon as the Vitamin C in the cabbage decreases over time. And so I made several dishes with this cabbage. My favorite was a savory soup made in my Instant Pot containing very lean top sirloin steak, beef broth, cabbage and diced tomatoes. I just love this combination of ingredients.Continue reading
While we are “cookin’ in the kitchen” and staying home rather than eating out in restaurants, let’s make coleslaw. This vegetable salad is very nutritious and we all need to try to boost the Vitamin A and C content of our meals to keep up immune resistance. Plus, my husband declares that this is the best coleslaw that he has eaten. We decided that this is due to a “secret ingredient.” The recipe has a couple of twists and is easy to make in one bowl without any fuss. Continue reading
If you live in the South, tradition says you must eat boiled cabbage and blackeye peas on New Year’s day for good luck and fortune. And the grocery stores are full of bins of large cabbages. Several days after New Years, one of the bins still had cabbages–they were on sale for $.25 a pound. Of course I purchased one. But rather than cooking more boiled cabbage, I’m making a brined coleslaw and freezing the left-overs.
A Southern tradition is to eat blackeye peas and cabbage on New Year’s day or after the clock rings in the new year at midnight. Blackeye peas mean luck and prosperity. Cabbage, reminding a person of green back dollars, means wealth. My very sweet, Cajun/Italian next door neighbor would share her boiled cabbage greens and blackeye peas if I said I wasn’t cooking any on News Years Day. She made sure we were taken care of.
Traditionally these two foods are boiled, but they can be prepared in other ways as well. There’s no excuse not to eat these things on New Years day. And if you’re really not a cook, putting a few dried blackeye peas in your pocket has the same effect, I’m told. Coleslaw is easily found in restaurants, those chicken fast-food chains and easily made from a mix from the supermarket.