According to Southern tradition, a New Year's meal of black-eyed peas and greens will bring twelve months of growth and prosperity. Enter this addictive soup, which supplies more than enough of your supersticiously recommended dose of those lucky foods. With a hearty broth and a little zing of green chiles, it makes for a super satisfying meal regardless of the date on the calendar!
Soups feel especially apropos right now as we shift our attention from holiday revelry to healthy resolutions. This one contains nutritional powerhouses like kale and leeks, whose anti-inflammatory properties will help flush out the butter that's been congealing in your veins since Thanksgiving. Simmer up a big batch and you'll have yourself a welcome antidote to the excess of recent weeks.
Because leeks grow in sandy soil, grit can get trapped between their layers—so you'll want to rinse them well after you chop them. This recipe comes together in just under an hour and tastes even better on the second day. I can't promise it will make your wallet fatter this year, but I can promise it will leave you feeling light, clean, nourished, and toasty-warm!
Southern New Year's Day Soup
Adapted from Vegetarian Times
2 Tbs. olive oil
2 large leeks, white and light green parts sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 cups chopped kale
2 15-oz. cans diced tomatoes
1 4-oz. can diced green chiles
2 cans cooked black-eyed peas (or you can cook your own from dried)
8 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
Shaved Parmesan for garnish, optional
Heat oil a large pot over medium heat and saute leeks until soft, 5-7 minutes. Add garlic and cook 2 minutes more. Add diced tomatoes, chiles, black-eyed peas, and broth; simmer on low, 40 minutes. Stir in kale for last few minutes of cooking. Serve with a little grated parmesan and, if you're really feeling lucky, some cornbread!