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Happy New Year!

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Happy New Year!

I have been so busy cooking and eating that I haven’t taken time to blog about it. Unlike Thanksgiving and New Years, we don’t have any established Christmas Day food traditions. Jason’s mom always made a standing rib roast with Yorkshire puddings, and our first few married years we either went back to her house or tried to recreate her menu.  Jason is often involved in church choirs, either conducting or singing. Now the kids are involved in Christmas Eve pageants.  We have begun postponing our trip to our hometown until after Christmas. The rib roast just wasn’t something I enjoyed making. We have tried turkey but that just seemed too reminiscent of Thanksgiving. This year we decided to split kitchen duties. Jason found a bag of charcoal left over from summer. I found a good deal at the store on some thick-cut sirloin steaks. As a side, I decided to try combining and adapting two of my favorites: the Pioneer Woman’s Burgundy Mushrooms   http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2010/09/burgundy-mushrooms/and Alton Brown’s Wild Mushroom and Asparagus Risotto http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/alton-brown/wild-mushroom-and-asparagus-risotto-recipe/index.html.

I started the mushrooms after the present opening in the morning substituting dairy-free beef broth for the bouillon, which usually has dairy, and cutting the margarine (I used unsalted Fleischmann’s) by half.  I let that slow cook all day. That night instead of warming broth and wine as suggested in the risotto instructions, I used the broth from the mushrooms. I also obviously left out the cheese. It seemed to take forever especially with hungry kids repeatedly checking in, but it was so good. We may have found a new tradition.

For New Year’s today, we made hoppin john using the recipe on the back of the Bush’s Best black-eyed-peas-with-snaps can. Since I can’t find a good link I will copy it below. I used less oil and subbed a beautiful yellow pepper for the red pepper. I sometimes will make the peas from scratch with a ham hock bone, but this year we are still recovering from our road trip to our hometown. I got a slow start. I served the hoppin john with canned collard greens and corn muffins made from a boxed Jiffy mix (I substituted soy for the cow’s milk).  It wasn’t anything to really blog about except that I re-discovered by adding jalapeno peppers and salsa to my portion that I really like black-eyed peas. I see this recipe returning to our regular rotation. I also am superstitious enough to want all the good luck I can get.  Happy New Year!

Hoppin John (recipe borrowed from Bush’s Blackeyed Peas)

1 cup chopped onion

1 sweet red pepper, chopped

1 green pepper, chopped

1 cup chopped cooked ham

2 cans Bush’s Blackeye Peas with Snaps

1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce

In a large skillet cook onion, peppers and ham for four minutes. Drain blackeye peas with snaps reserving 1/2 cup of liquid. Add peas with snaps, liquid and hot pepper sauce to ham mixture. Stir to combine. Serve over rice.

Happy New Year!

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