My black eyed peas taste sweet - used too lean of ham - thinking I need to add fat- tried some butter but hasn't helped really. What should I

  • Posted by: mogg
  • January 1, 2015


Incognito January 3, 2015
To make a successful pot of peas, one must have a proper recipe. The best recipes start with a ham/salt pork/bacon (pick one) broth into which the peas are cooked along with some chopped vegetables (usually onion and celery) and some seasonings (salt, cayenne, etc.). There is no reason to add any extra fat other than that associated with the broth. I am guessing that the ham you used was too sweet. The broth needs an American country-style pork product (I hope this is not too misleading a term) to achieve full flavor. It could be a piece of real Smithfield ham (which is VERY salty, but perfect for this), smoked ham hocks or even smoked bacon. A sweet ham product is not going to give you the full flavor you need for this broth. At my home in Mississippi we always served peas with a cooked chili pepper relish (not sweet, but sort of vinegary and full of peppers) made and sold by an elderly Italian lady. She produced vast quantities of it with peppers from her garden and everyone in town loved it! Alas I do not have her recipe. We now make do with homemade salsa picante. Not the same but still good. To summarize: the peas will only be as good as the broth. The broth will depend on the flavor of pork. If you need a good recipe I can provide one.
ChefJune January 2, 2015
Blackeyed peas do have a natural sweetness to them. I'm with adding bacon and vinegar to doctor it up.
Chef L. January 1, 2015
In true Southern style, I'd add a touch of bacon grease & pepper vinegar.
trampledbygeese January 1, 2015
What style recipe did you start with?

I second bacon, but then again that might make it sweeter. Do you have any salt pork?

Could experiment with a sweet and sour flavour, adding something like tamarind if you have any. Or sweet and spicy with chili flakes.

Let us know what you do.
aargersi January 1, 2015
Did you start with a BBQ style recipe? I would probably add some bacon and jalapenos ... fat, salt and heat make pretty much everything better ...
luvcookbooks January 1, 2015
I always add potatoes to soak up excess seasoning. Is there actual sugar in the recipe? Do you have frozen or canned black eyed peas that you could add to dilute the sweetness?
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