Eating black eyed peas on New Year’s Day is said to be good luck. And that may be true, if you consider the nutrition the little bean delivers. One-half cup of black eyed peas carries 70 calories, 2.5 grams of protein, 1/2 gram of fat, and 4 grams of soluble fiber,which promotes healthy cholesterol levels, in addition to plenty of B vitamins, Vitamin K, Vitamin A, and potassium. Black eyed peas have a low glycemic index and a moderate amount of carbohydrates at 17 grams per half cup but they are complex carbs which are digested slowly and keep you feeling satisfied longer. If you have New Year’s Day guests who are on a reduced-carb diet or a diabetic diet, black eyed peas will fill the bill.
If you want to keep New Year’s Day dinner simple, black eyed peas are economical and cook up faster than most other legumes because they do not require presoaking. A very simple, yet delicious way to prepare them is to simmer in a covered pot, a cup of dry black eyed peas, a tablespoon of molasses, a fourth cup of sauteed onions and garlic, and a splash of Worcestershire sauce in 3 cups of water for about an 90 minutes, stirring occasionally. Legumes soak up a lot of water as they cook so you may have to add more. When cooking is finished, salt to taste. A hot, steaming bowl of black eyed peas served up with cooked greens and either rice or cornbread tastes so good on a wintry New Year’s Day.
Eating black eyed peas on New Year’s Day may not actually bring you good luck but you will be doing your health a favor by including more legumes in your diet in the new year.