The Danged Black-Eyed Peas

What’s with the black-eyed peas?  And I’m not talking about the rap group with that cute Fergie girl.  I’m talking about the peas.  The legumes

I’ve talked to everybody in my fam back in Orlando today and they are all eating black-eyed peas.  Even my sister, LuAnn, in NYC is eating them.  She got all her neighbors into the pea thing too.  Everyone is eating peas and they are horrified that I am not.  It’s the first question they ask.  “Hi.  Happy New Year!  Are you eating your black-eyed peas?” 

“No.  I’m not.”  I reply.

I think I hear a gasp on the other end of the line and then a muffled, “She’s not eating peas!”, followed by, “Oh, so you’re not eating and peas and cornbread today?”  (as in, “you’re not really not going to eat peas on New Year’s Day, are you?!?!?).   

“No, I’m just having some chili.”


You see it is somehow weirdly sacreligious, or least very un-southern, not to eat black-eyed peas on NYD.  I’m really not trying to rebel (though I have it in me) and it’s not that I don’t like black-eyed peas and cornbread.  I do.  I like them very much.  But it’s just that I already had some chili fixed and that’s my dinner for tonight.

I continue on, feeling the need to explain myself and my decision not to eat peas today, hopefully alleviating the guilt I feel starting to creep up on me.   

“No.  Not eating peas tonight.  I’m eating left-over chili… because John left for Bradenton late this morning and I made some danged good chili the other night and I’m really looking forward to heating that up later on.” 

I used to make just “really good” chili when we lived in Orlando.   But we live in Texas now, and now I make “danged good” chili because in Texas we say something is “danged good” if it is really, really yummy and good.  So don’t go off on me for using “danged”.  It’s just a word.  Danged.  That’s all it is- danged.  And I come from a family of good, southern cooks so I’m sure the black-eyed peas were danged good, too. 

“So, no.  No peas tonight.  Just chili.” 


So, what is up with the danged black-eyed peas on New Year’s Day?  Ate ’em all my life, but can’t recall what the big deal is.  Anybody? 

And what did YOU eat today?  Do share!

xo – P