Becky Luigart-Stayner; Melanie J. Clarke Photo by: Becky Luigart-Stayner; Melanie J. Clarke

Black-Eyed Pea Patties with Garlic Pepper Salsa

Black-eyed peas were introduced in the Caribbean by African slaves. Somewhat drier than other legumes, they are ivory-gray in color with a black "eye" at the inner curve. They go by many names, including gungo and pigeon peas. These patties can be shaped an hour in advance; cover and refrigerate.

Cooking Light OCTOBER 2007

  • Yield: 6 servings (serving size: 2 patties and 1/3 cup salsa)


  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 serrano chiles, seeded and finely chopped
  • 2 (16-ounce) cans black-eyed peas, rinsed and well drained
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
  • 6 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, divided
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
  • 2 cups chopped tomato
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lime juice


Combine minced garlic and chiles in a large bowl. Place 1 teaspoon garlic mixture in a small bowl; set aside. Add peas to remaining garlic mixture in large bowl; mash mixture with a potato masher. Stir in bell pepper, 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro, cumin, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and egg, stirring until well blended. Divide mixture into 12 equal portions (about 1/4 cup each), shaping each into a 1/2-inch-thick patty.

Heat 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 6 patties; cook 4 minutes on each side or until browned. Repeat procedure with the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil and 6 patties.

Add remaining 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, chopped tomato, and fresh lime juice to the reserved garlic mixture in bowl; stir well. Serve with patties.

Beer note: Sometimes it's fun to conjure a little sunshine with your autumn meals. And these salsa-laced patties mark the perfect occasion to enjoy a refreshing Caribbean beer like Red Stripe Lager ($7.50/six-pack) from Jamaica. Beers that are developed alongside spicy cuisine tend to be light-bodied, balanced, neutral, and incredibly quaffable, making this beer a good choice with the patties' serrano peppers and cumin. --Jeffery Lindenmuth

Nutritional Information

Amount per serving
  • Calories: 119
  • Calories from fat: 29%
  • Fat: 3.9g
  • Saturated fat: 0.7g
  • Monounsaturated fat: 2g
  • Polyunsaturated fat: 0.7g
  • Protein: 6.1g
  • Carbohydrate: 16g
  • Fiber: 4.1g
  • Cholesterol: 35mg
  • Iron: 1.5mg
  • Sodium: 435mg
  • Calcium: 37mg

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Black-Eyed Pea Patties with Garlic Pepper Salsa recipe