Howard Test Kitchen: January 1, 2014

What's the secret to ensuring that this year is going to be a prosperous one? We'll share some traditions that might help your chances.


Happy New Year. I hope it's a healthy and prosperous one! And to help ensure that it's filled  with lots of good fortune, I thought it might be a good idea to whip up something that is not only tasty, but that is said to bring us a year of luck and prosperity. I'm talking about a southern classic made with rice and black eyed peas known as hoppin' john. We started by cooking some bacon in a saucepan. Once it was crisp, we added chopped celery and onions and cooked them until they were tender. Now we stir in some chicken broth and a can of black-eyed peas. The story has it that the peas symbolize coins, and the more peas you’re served … the more prosperous the year. After we simmer this for a few minutes, we stir in a package of quick-cooking rice (you know, the one with the seasoning packet), and a bit of thyme. Then cover it and take it off the heat. Once the rice is tender, it’s ready. Make sure you serve it with a side of collard greens (because they’re also rumored to bring us good fortune since they’re the color of money). What a hot-and-hearty way to start off the year. As always, the recipe for “Quick Hopping John,” is online and is just one more way for us to wish you a happy and prosperous new year. I’m Howard in the Mr. Food Test Kitchen, where every day we’re looking for an easier way for you to say … an easier way for you to say … “OOH IT’S SO GOOD!!”


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