Pick over the dried peas, removing any debris, and rinse. Cover with water and allow to soak for 8 hours or quick-soak by bringing to a boil, cooking for 1 minute, and remove from heat. Allow quick-soaked peas to stand for at least 1 hour. Drain peas just before cooking.
Heat a large non-stick pot or pressure cooker. Spray the bottom with cooking spray (omit if pot is non-stick) and add the onions. Cook, stirring, until onions soften. Add the cumin seed and cook for 1 minute. Add the asafetida, ginger, and garlic and stir for about 30 seconds.
Add the drained peas and all remaining ingredients. Add 2 cups of water and bring to a low boil.
If pressure cooking, seal the cooker, bring to high pressure, and cook for 7 minutes; remove from heat and allow pressure to come down naturally. Check seasoning and add more salt and garam masala if necessary. Simmer uncovered for a few minutes to allow flavors to blend, and mash a few peas against the side of the pot to thicken the sauce. If all peas are not completely tender, cover but do not seal the cooker and simmer until peas are tender.
If cooking in a regular pot, cover and simmer until the black-eyed peas are tender (depending on the age of your peas, 30-60 minutes). Check seasoning and add more salt and garam masala if necessary.
Sprinkle with parsley or cilantro and serve with rice or bread.
Garam masala is a spice blend that is best when made from whole seeds just before using. That said, if you have a packaged blend that you like, you can, of course, use it here. Here’s the garam masala blend I used in this recipe:1 tsp. cardamom seeds (from green cardamom pods) 1 small cinnamon stick 1 tsp. cumin seeds 1/4 tsp. cloves 1 tsp. black peppercornsToast lightly in a dry skillet over medium heat until fragrant (be careful not to burn). Remove from heat, cool, and grind in a coffee grinder or spice mill. Use immediately or seal tightly and use soon. Makes about 1 tablespoon.****This dish is zero points on Weight Watchers Freestyle program.