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Black-Eyed Peas with Caramelized Onion and Country Ham

Yield 8 servings


  • 3 (15.8-ounce) cans packed from fresh shelled black-eyed peas (we tested with Bush's Best)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 (14 1/2-ounce) can ready-to-serve chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large purple onion, diced
  • 1/4 pound country ham, diced
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme or 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • Garnish: fresh thyme sprigs

How to Make It

  1. Combine first 3 ingredients in a 2-quart saucepan; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes; drain. Discard bay leaf. Return peas to pan; cover and set aside.

  2. Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion; cook 5 minutes or until golden, stirring often. Reduce heat; add ham, and cook 10 additional minutes or until ham is crisp and onion is well browned. Stir in vinegar, chopped thyme, and pepper; bring to a boil. Cook, stirring occasionally to loosen any caramelized bits from bottom of pan, 5 minutes or until mixture is a thin syrup. Pour over peas; toss well. Garnish, if desired.

Christmas with Southern Living 1999