Perhaps you remember reading that black-eyed peas with spinach is one of our absolute favourite meals. It’s true, and that, of course, meant that our parents would make it often; they still do, and now we do too! Over the years, being the efficient cooks that they are, they learned that if they soaked and boiled extra black-eyed peas (more beans = same amount of time and effort as fewer beans), they could use them in different recipes. It was black-eyed pea surplus that led them to whip together this salad.
Black-eyed peas (also called cowpeas) are readily available pretty much wherever you live, which is why they feature so prominently in various ethnic cuisines, from American Southern cooking, to Asian dishes, to Mediterranean recipes. Their availability, coupled with their impressive nutritional profile (they are high in iron, protein, and fiber), make it a good idea to try and incorporate them into your diet. This salad will help you do that in an easy and delicious way.
After your beans are boiled, this salad comes together in less than 30 minutes; much less if you have master chopping skills. So, during busy workdays, it is a great idea to have already boiled beans in your refrigerator. That way you can have supper on the table quickly, leaving more time for dessert and coffee. In a pinch, you can always substitute canned beans; keep in mind that you will need about 2 1/2 cups of canned beans for this recipe as the 1 cup of dried beans called for equals 2 1/2 cups of cooked black-eyed peas.
Our parents like to use arugula in this recipe, but they have also made it with spinach, kale and even lettuce. The arugula give a nice peppery bite, but if you don’t have it handy you can certainly substitute your own favourite green (we hope you have a favourite green 🙂 ).
This salad also makes a great take along lunch. If you will be preparing it for the next day, assemble everything together except for the arugula. Toss that in right before serving and then mix everything together to coat the arugula with the dressing. That way, your greens will stay crisp and fresh.
Mia Kouppa:Black-eyed pea salad
- 1 cup (250 ml) dried black-eyed peas
- 1 cup (250 ml) chopped, peeled cucumber
- 1 cup (250 ml) cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1/4 cup (60 ml) chopped red onion
- 1 tablespoon (15 ml) finely chopped mint
- 3 handfuls of arugula
- 1/2 cup (125 ml) apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 cup (60 ml) olive oil
- 1 tablespoon (15 ml) honey
- 1 tablespoon (15 ml) lemon zest
- 1 tablespoon (15 ml) prepared mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon (2 ml) Greek oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon (2 ml) salt
- 1/4 teaspoon (1 ml) ground black pepper
- Pick over your black-eyed peas and discard any stones or shrivelled up beans. Rinse beans and then soak in a bowl of cold water at least 12 hours, or overnight.
- After soaking, drain and rinse your beans. Bring a pot of water to a boil and add beans. Cook over medium high heat for approximately 35 minutes, or until tender. Drain beans, rinse them under cool running water and allow them to cool.
- In a large bowl combine the black-eyed peas, cucumber, cherry tomatoes, red onion, mint and arugula.
- In a smaller bowl whisk together the apple cider vinegar, olive oil, honey, lemon zest, prepared mustard, oregano, salt and pepper. Whisk well until thoroughly combined.
- Pour dressing over the salad and mix well, to coat all components. Enjoy.