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Enjoy this modern recipe. 


  • 3 pounds dried black-eyed peas
  • 4 pounds hog jowl or breakfast bacon, not too lean
  • 4 cups finely chopped onions
  • 1 pound raw rice
  • 2 teaspoons dried ground rosemary
  • 2 teaspoons dry mustard
  • 2 teaspoons hot pepper sauce
  • 1 cup bourbon whiskey
  • Salt to taste


Soak peas in cold water overnight. Cut jowls or bacon strips into 1/2-inch square pieces. Brown in large skillet. Remove from heat; let stand at room temperature. Do not pour off grease. Add chopped onions to grease in the skillet; saute until they are soft. Allow them to remain in grease. Cook rice until it is fluffy and set aside for later use. Pour water off the peas, cover them with fresh water and cook uncovered over low heat until soft (covering the peas while cooking would cause them to "shell out").

In a large container place the rice, peas, hog jowl or bacon. Pour in the onions with all the grease; add rosemary, mustard, and hot pepper sauce. Stir the contents, mix it together, stirring only with a large fork so the mixture does not break up but remains whole. Place the contents in 4 large crocks, each crock about the 2-quart size. To this point, the Hoppin' John may be prepared the day before serving.

Set the crocks, uncovered, in a pan of water that comes 1/2 way up the sides of the crocks. Allow the contents to steam over low heat for 2 hours so the ingredients meld and grease is absorbed. Serve the Hoppin' John in a large container and add the bourbon whiskey.

Serves 16 to 20