Roasted Black Eyed Pea, spinach and bacon casserole
Recipe: Roasted Black Eyed Pea, spinach and bacon casserole NEW
Thereís a tradition in much of the South where you eat pork and black eyed peas on New Yearís Day to bring you luck throughout the year. Since my mother-in-law is from Arkansas, Iíve always tried to keep this tradition for my husband. Iím not superstitious but it canít hurt! I had planned a chicken dinner but I didnít have the ingredients yet so I was inspired to do a new black eyed pea recipe while I was in the car on the way to the grocery store.
6 pieces of bacon, sliced crosswise into quarter inch strips
2 cups of sliced button mushrooms
3 large minced shallots
2 15 oz cans of black eyed peas, drained, rinsed and drained again
Three quarters of a cup of chicken broth (divided)
2 tsp of minced garlic (jar garlic is fine)
1 Tbl of hot sauce (Tabasco or other)
1 tsp of black pepper
One cup of Italian cheese mix or Parmesan
One half pound of baby spinach leaves (fresh)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
In a large sautť pan cook the bacon until crisp. Youíre making bacon bites. When they are nicely browned youíre going to drain them on paper towels, but DO NOT wash the pan. Just pour off the grease and leave the pan as is. Next youíll sautť the mushrooms and shallots in the pan on medium, until they are just loosened up and starting to brown. This will take just a few minutes.
Now youíll put in your drained, rinsed and drained beans with a half cup of chicken broth. I am emphasizing this because you donít want the bean liquid. You need clean beans.
Add the garlic, hot sauce, and the pepper. Mix thoroughly. Add the bacon bits and mix again. Then put this mixture in a 9 X 13Ē ovenproof pan and bake for one hour at 350 degrees.
When the hour is up take out the casserole and stir. Add the final quarter cup of chicken broth and the spinach and the cheese. This takes a bit of patience because you will have to continually put handfuls of spinach in and toss the spinach in until it wilts. Then add the next handful. And stir again. When itís all mixed in, put the casserole back in the oven for 30 more minutes.
Serve warm, right from the oven.
Enjoy. Cheers! Zola
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