Hoppin’ John is traditionally eaten in the southern states of the US, and comprises rice and black-eyed beans cooked together, much like a pilau, and served with collard greens. Eating it on New Year’s Day is said to bring luck and prosperity – the beans represent coins, the greens dollar bills – and although we’re long past that, it could certainly save you money, because it’s a wildly economical meal. My recipe is a broad interpretation of the original: I’ve cooked the greens with the rice and thrown in an old family favourite ingredient, Tabasco. The result is a gentle, soothing, belly-warming dish with a small vinegar kick to it.
So that you don’t get ambushed by the recipe, do all the chopping up front, then it is just a question of throwing things into a pan. You’ll need a large frying pan with a tight fitting lid.
Prep 20 minCook 40 minServes 6-8
4 tbsp groundnut oil1 red onion, peeled and finely diced2 carrots (about 200g) finely diced3 celery stalks (about 200g), finely diced3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced1 tbsp tomato puree1 ½ tbsp Tabasco 200g spring greens, shredded300g basmati rice, washed and drained1 x 400g tin black-eyed beans, drained550ml vegetable stock (suitable for vegans)1 tsp fine sea saltVegan garlic mayonnaise, to serve