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Simmered Black-eyed Peas with Tomatoes


Makes 6 to 8 servings (4 cups)

"This recipe is adapted from the [sisterhood at Temple Israel's] synagogue cookbook, The Sephardic Cooks. Traditionally, these peas are served with 'pink rice'--Sephardic-style rice cooked with a bit of tomato sauce. Miriam Cohen, a longtime member of the Sephardic community in Montgomery, Alabama, told me, 'You know, when I cook pink rice, my son says, "This is Jewish soul food!" It is, you know.' " --Marcie Cohen Ferris, Matzoh Ball Gumbo.   Prep: 10 minutes; Cook: 1 hour 6 minutes.


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus more to taste
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, plus more to taste
  • 2 (16-ounce) bags frozen black-eyed peas

How to Make It

  1. Heat oil in a large, heavy saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and garlic, and sauté about 4 minutes or until tender. Add tomato and next 3 ingredients; cook, stirring often, about 2 minutes or until tomato starts to soften.

  2. Stir in black-eyed peas and 3 1/2 cups water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer about 1 hour or until peas are tender. Season with more kosher salt and pepper, if desired. Serve hot or warm.

Matzoh Ball Gumbo: Culinary Tales of the Jewish South