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Spicy Black Eyed Peas with Red Pepper Relish

When my oldest daughter was about three years old, she had dinner at my parents’ house while we went out. When we picked her up, I asked what grandma had made for dinner. She told me she had hot dogs and eye beans. It took us a few minutes to figure out that my mom had served black eyed peas. My mom said she gobbled them up that night, but she won’t touch them now. Needless to say, she didn’t try my recipe. Oh well, more for us!

I saw this recipe in Cooking Light magazine several years ago and of course, made my own adjustments to it. Although I love my southern family’s version, my husband isn’t crazy about how bland they are. Here is a spicy version that we both enjoyed.


2 cans (15oz.) black eyed peas

1 tbsp olive oil

½ onion, diced

1 garlic clove, crushed

½ cup broth – (I had chicken stock on hand)

½ tsp cumin

½ tsp chili powder


1 small red bell pepper, diced

½ onion, diced

1 medium jalapeno pepper, diced (seeds optional)

2 -3  tbsps vinegar

1 tsp dry mustard

½ tsp sugar

Directions for Relish:

Combine all ingredients in bowl and cover. Can be made ahead and refrigerated.

Directions for Black Eyed Peas:

In medium sauce pan, sauté onion and garlic in olive oil until clear, about 10 minutes.

Drain and rinse black eyed peas.

When onions are done, add cumin, chili powder, black eyed peas and broth to sauce pan.

Bring to a boil and then simmer for 10 minutes.

To serve, place a scoop of black eyed peas on plate and garnish with the relish.

The crunchiness of the relish is a nice compliment to the starchy black eyed peas. The heat from the jalapeno and chili powder offset the vinegar and mustard. This dish was the perfect side to grilled pork chops and mashed potatoes.


One comment on “Spicy Black Eyed Peas with Red Pepper Relish

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