Black-eyed peas have such a distinctive flavor that they may seem like an odd base for hummus, but I was so intrigued by a recipe for Black-Eyed Pea Hummus in our local paper that I decided to give it a whirl. I totally ignored the recipe, of course (it contained 2 cups of olive oil and was topped with fried black-eyed peas; I felt my arteries hardening just looking at it) and gave my hummus a sort of Louisiana spin by adding pecans, hot sauce, and a generous shot of smoked paprika. The resulting hummus was thick and smokey and flavorful. Even my daughter, who isn’t wild about black-eyed peas, loved it enough to take the leftovers to school for lunch.
I’m not a fan of canned black-eyed peas; I find that they have an off flavor and odor. So I started this hummus by cooking dried peas in my electric pressure cooker for 10 minutes and then letting the pressure come down naturally. Since I was making the peas from scratch, I was able to add a little flavor by throwing in some onion with the peas, which then got blended into the hummus. If you want, you can make this with canned beans, but please, put them into a colander and rinse them well to get rid of as much of the canned taste as possible. Using canned beans makes this a Ridiculously Easy recipe, but if you’ve got the time (and a pressure cooker) I really recommend using the dried beans.
A thick, smokey dip with Southern charm, this black-eyed pea hummus goes well with thick slices of crispy bread, crackers, or raw vegetables.
- 1 cup dried blackeyed peas (or 2 cups canned and well-rinsed and drained)
- 1/2 medium onion, coarsely chopped (omit if using canned peas)
- 1/4 cup chopped pecans or other nuts (see note)
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 -2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon hot sauce (see note)
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
- If using dried peas, rinse and pick over the peas and place them in a pressure cooker or large saucepan. Add 3 cups of water and the chopped onion. In the pressure cooker, cook at high pressure for 10 minutes; allow pressure to come down naturally. For regular cooking, bring to a boil, reduce heat and cook covered until peas are tender, about 45 minutes, adding additional water as needed. Drain peas well. (If using canned peas, skip to step 2.)
- Place the pecans in the food processor and whiz them until they are powdered. Add the drained peas and all remaining ingredients except salt and process until fairly smooth. Add salt and additional lemon juice to taste.
- Scrape into a covered container and refrigerate until chilled.
I use a mild hot sauce (Cholula), so if you use something hotter, adjust the amount to taste.
Nutrition (per serving, without salt or nuts): 102 calories, 4 calories from fat, less than 1g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 70.9mg sodium, 346.3mg potassium, 18.6g carbohydrates, 3.3g fiber, 2.5g sugar, 6.8g protein.
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