good luck eats

Hoppin’ John Recipe

The last in the “good luck eats” series is an old southern staple…Hoppin’ John. Though beans, like green, are meant to serve as a symbol of wealth (“peas for pennies, greens for dollars, and cornbread for gold”), they just don’t really look like coins to me. Another historical perspective mentioned that the good luck association of beans is tied more to the quick germination and sustenance they provide.

Hoppin' John fixins

Hoppin’ John fixins

The source for this recipe is the Charleston City Paper again. Go here for the original writeup:


Dried black eye peas, 2 pounds soaked overnight then drained

2 quarts chicken stock or broth

Diced red and yellow bell peppers

2 ribs celery, diced

1 large onion, diced

Cooked bacon, diced

2 teaspoons pickled jalapeños

2 tablespoons minced garlic

2 tablespoons fresh, chopped parsley

2 tablespoons fresh, chopped thyme

2 bay leaves

2 ounces tomato paste

2 teaspoons chili powder

Kosher salt and freshly ground black peppers


  • Cook bacon in a large pot until crisp. Add onions, peppers, celery, chili powder, garlic, tomato paste, thyme, bay leaves, pickled jalapeños, salt and pepper to taste. Sauté over medium high heat until tender, about 5 minutes. Add drained peas.
  • Add two quarts chicken stock/broth and bring to a boil.
  • Reduce heat and simmer until peas are tender.
  • Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Cook favorite rice and serve peas on top or mix rice in with peas. Top with chopped parsley.


Collard Greens Recipe

Part two of our good luck eats recipes is one I found online via the Charleston City Paper (Charleston, SC).

Collard greens are a southern staple and symbolic of wealth…money. This recipe was definitely loaded…with FLAVOR.

Here’s our take on good luck greens (find the original write up here)


Collards…I picked about 2-3 pounds, folded leaves in half and de-stemmed then cut in ribbons

1 1/2 cups cider vinegar

1 tablespoon of homemade hot (ghost pepper) sauce from J&S Creations

1/4 cup brown sugar

1 tablespoon Kosher salt

2 quarts water (or chicken broth)

Optional – ham hock, smoked pork or bacon. We were having ham, so I added a little chopped ham to the mix.


  • Bring water to a simmer and add vinegar, hot sauce, brown sugar and salt. If using a ham hock, add it now, too. Simmer for 20-30 minutes.
  • Add collard greens and chopped ham.
  • Simmer all lightly for 2-3 hours.

Simple. Tangy. Fresh. Bring on the riches!


Cheesy Grits Recipe

As part of our “good luck” eats on New Year’s Day, I am finally getting around to posting the recipes that were used and are share worthy.

First up, Martha Stewart’s Cheesy Grits. I chose grits instead of cornbread because…well, it looked really good when we saw Martha cooking these up on PBS.

This simple yet satisfying recipe makes delicious creamy, cheesy grits that could be modified to be a main course (a little shrimp and grits, sausage and grits, anything and grits). We used the grits as a tasty side to our pork. The leftovers were just a great the next day!

Here is my adaptation along with a link to Martha’s original recipe:


4 cups chicken stock or broth

1 cup grits (I buy in bulk from Annie Kay’s)

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

Grated sharp cheddar and parmesan cheeses, about 2 cups divided but who really measures?

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

Freshly ground black pepper

Thick bacon slices, cooked and diced

Tomato slices (about 1/4″ thick)


  • Bring 4 cups chicken stock or broth and salt to a boil.
  • Using a whisk, stir constantly and add grits in a slow, steady stream. Lower heat but keep at a rapid simmer.
  • Cook, stirring constantly, until broth is absorbed and grits are creamy.
  • Remove from heat. Add butter and half of the grated cheese. Stir in with a wooden spoon.
  • Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Rub inside of ramekin with butter. Fill to about 2/3 full with the grits.
  • Top with diced, cooked bacon and a slice of tomato, then top with cheese.
  • Place ramekin on a rimmed baking sheet.
  • Broil until cheese is melted and slightly browned.

We’ve made these again. All told, this recipe probably takes about 15-20 minutes to prepare. It is quick, easy and tastes super.