Do you observe all the superstitions that come with the new year? Don’t throw your trash out until January 2 (nothing leaves the house or you are setting yourself up for a year of losing things!). Make a LOT of noise at midnight, maybe with pots and pans in the middle of the street (this scares away evil spirits from your upcoming year). Don’t spend money, pay bills or make loans on New Year’s Day (or else you’ll be spending too much in the new year).
There are plenty of other New Year’s superstitions, but the most common ones that people observe are eating black-eyed peas and greens for health and wealth. My biggest issue is that I don’t like black-eyed peas, so I look for new recipes that cloak the black-eyed pea taste and prove very tasty, as surely there is some superstition that eating poor tasting food on New Year’s Day ensures a year of bad eating, right?!
Today’s recipe includes both black-eyed peas and shredded kale, and promises to be enjoyed even if you don’t like either one! I am a fan of a tasty white bean soup, and this is a variation of a recipe that I’ve been making for years.
UPDATED (original recipe had a tablespoon of Better than Bouillion Ham, but that is supposed to be a teaspoon. Apologies and thank you to the nice reader who let us know!)
- 1 large white onion (or 2 cups), diced
- 1 cup diced celery
- ½ cup diced carrots (to save time, you can start with preshredded carrots)
- 1 pound small yellow potatoes (about 2 cups), diced
- 3 Tablespoons olive oil
- 2 (15.5-ounce) cans great Northern beans, drained
- 2 (15.5-ounce) cans cannellini (white kidney) beans, drained
- 1 (15.5-ounce) can black-eyed peas, drained
- 1 teaspoon "Better than Bouillon" ham mixed into 1 cup water
- 1 cup flat kale cut into thin strips (I take the stalk out, roll the kale up, and then slice it easily into thin strips. If you can't find flat kale, use a few handfuls, chopped up, of any variety.)
- 8 ounces Boar's Head smoked ham (like the kale, I stack the ham, roll it up and and slice it into thin strips)
- 2 cups finely shredded cabbage (you can buy this in the prepackaged lettuce section called Angel Hair cabbage)
- 1 Tablespoon granulated garlic
- 1 Tablespoons Lawry's seasoned salt
- 1 Tablespoon dried thyme
- 1 Tablespoon salt-free Cajun seasoning
- 2 Tablespoons Sriracha sauce
- 1 teaspoon cracked black pepper
- 1 bunch fresh thyme, tied in a bundle
- 2 bay leaves
- 3 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- Diced green onions, white onion and hot sauce as garnishes (optional)
- Dice up onion, celery, carrots and potatoes. Be sure to cut potatoes very small and thin to ensure that they cook properly. Heat the olive oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat and add the diced vegetables. Cook until soft, about 12 to15 minutes.
- Place the cooked vegetables in an 8-quart stockpot and add the 5 cans of beans. Add the 1 cup of water with the "Better Than Bouillon" ham dissolved in it (or close to dissolved!). Cook over medium heat.
- Slice the kale and ham and add to the stockpot. If you did not buy presliced cabbage, slice the cabbage into thin strips and add to the soup mixture.
- Add the remaining ingredients, except for the vinegar and garnishes.
- Cook for 20 to 25 minutes. The soup will get more liquid-y as it cooks. Taste to see if you would like to add more salt, as this recipe can use a lot of salt, and it depends on your taste.
- Finish the soup with 3 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar. This one ingredient does SO much to the soup to brighten it.
- Serve with diced green onion, white onion and hot sauce as garnishes, if desired.
Need some more recipes? Here are five more New Year’s Day essential recipes: