Hoppin' John with Avocado-Cucumber Dressing

Prep: 25 minutes Cook: 10 minutes


By Cathy Fisher
Hoppin' John is a southern U.S. dish adopted from West African culture. Black-eyed peas are the trademark ingredient of this dish, which is traditionally eaten on January 1st to bring good luck in the New Year; but I like to eat it throughout the year. This version uses fennel and mushrooms, topped off with a little avocado dressing.


  • Hoppin' John:
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 medium onion or shallot, chopped
  • 1 bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 2 ribs celery or 1 fennel bulb, diced
  • 6 mushrooms, diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced (or ½ teaspoon dried)
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 2 15 ounce cans black-eyed peas, rinsed
  • 2 scallions, chopped
  • 1/2 cup parsley, chopped
  • 1 small bunch greens (collards, chard, kale), julienned
  • Avocado-Cucumber Dressing:
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 2 tsp lemon juice or apple cider vinegar
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 cucumber (with seeds), diced
  • 1/2 cup raw spinach (or other greens), chopped (optional)
  • 1 scallion, chopped


Hoppin' John: Using water as needed, saute the onion, bell pepper, celery or fennel, and mushrooms on medium-high for a few minutes until soft. Add the garlic, thyme, basil and cumin, and saute another minute.

Mix in the black-eyed peas, scallions, parsley and greens, and cook about 5 minutes until the greens are softened. Serve as is, topped with Avocado-Cucumber dressing (below), and/or over brown rice.

Avocado-Cucumber Dressing:
Combine all ingredients in a blender until smooth. Add water as needed to thin to desired consistency.