2 Recipes for Luck and Fortune in the New Year

By  Ann Dunaway Teh

Shrimp Grits and Greens with a Black Eyed Pea Salad is the perfect New Year's Day dish for luck, fortune and good health!

The New Year is upon us! And while most people think of football and new beginnings on New Year’s Day, I think of the food! You’ve probably heard of foods you should eat on New Year’s Day for fortune and luck in the coming year. Here in the South, that means 2 things:

Collard Greens and Black-Eyed Peas!

Shrimp, Grits and Greens is a fun and healthy twist on this traditional Southern dish

Greens are a traditional food symbolizing wealth in the coming year since the greens resemble folded dollar bills. Black-eyed peas and other beans also symbolize wealth due to their resemblance to coins. In the South, black-eyed peas also represent luck, going back to various stories from the Civil War where black-eyed peas helped Southerners survive the winter and harsh conditions when other food was scarce.  

Black Eyed Pea Salad is the perfect New Year's Day dish for luck, fortune and good health!

While you may not believe in superstitions, there is no doubting that collard greens and black-eyed peas are nutritional superstars that can be prepared in a number of yummy ways. Collard greens pack in a whole lot of nutrients for few calories, including protein, fiber, vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, folate, calcium and iron to name a few. Likewise, black-eyed peas are packed with protein, fiber, calcium, iron, and potassium along with a bunch of other vitamins and minerals. What better way to start the new year, especially if being healthier is one of your resolutions for the new year (along with many other Americans – it is usually one of the top ones)! 

Black Eyed Pea Salad is packed with nutrients, delicious and lasts for several days in the refrigerator for a quick lunch

There are certainly traditional ways of eating collard greens and black-eyed peas, but we decided to put a little spin on it for an even tastier meal to kick off the new year. Shrimp and Grits are another Southern favorite, and throwing in some collard greens takes them to another level, both in the taste and nutrition department. 

Shrimp Grits and Greens
Shrimp, Grits & Greens
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Shrimp Grits and Greens
Shrimp, Grits & Greens
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Ingredients
Grits:
  • 1 tsp canola oil
  • 1 sweet onion, grated
  • 1/2 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels, thawed
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup low sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup yellow grits or coarse ground yellow cornmeal
  • ½ cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
Creamy Shrimp and Greens:
  • 1 lb shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • ¼ tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
  • 4 tsp canola oil, divided
  • 1 tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onions
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp hot sauce, optional
  • 4 cups collards, trimmed and stemmed, cut into strips
Servings: servings
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Instructions
  1. For the grits, heat 1 teaspoon canola oil in a 2-quart saucepan over medium heat. Add the onions and sauté until translucent, about 2 minutes. Stir in the corn and continue cooking for another 3 minutes.
  2. Turn heat to medium-high and add the milk and water. Bring to a slow boil and whisk in the grits. Reduce heat to low and simmer for about 30 minutes or until thick, stirring occasionally. Stir in the parmesan cheese and set aside.
  3. While the grits are simmering, season the shrimp with salt and pepper. Heat 1 teaspoon canola oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the shrimp to the pan and cook for 1 to 2 minutes on each side or just until shrimp turn pink. Remove from skillet.
  4. Add remaining canola oil to the pan and reduce the heat to medium. Whisk in flour; cook 30 seconds to 1 minute. Whisk in broth and next 6 ingredients; cook about 5 minutes or until thickened.
  5. Stir in shrimp and cook for an additional minute or until the collards are completely wilted. Serve immediately over grits.
Recipe Notes

Chef's Note: Unfamiliar with grits? Polenta is a great substitute.

Nutrition Nugget:  Since Ann and Lesley live in the South, this meal is a spin on a traditional Southern new year’s day meal for fortune and good luck in the coming year. Greens, and particularly collard greens in the South, represent economic fortune in the new year. The more greens you eat, the larger your fortune. Legumes also represent money for the coming year and black-eyed peas symbolize good luck. Regardless of superstition, collard greens and black-eyed peas are nutrition power houses and what better way to start the new year than with yummy nutrition super stars in your tummy!

Nutrition Facts
Shrimp, Grits & Greens
Amount Per Serving
Calories 325 Calories from Fat 90
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 10g 15%
Saturated Fat 3g 15%
Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 119mg 40%
Sodium 557mg 23%
Total Carbohydrates 33g 11%
Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
Sugars 6g
Protein 24g 48%
Vitamin A 31%
Vitamin C 21%
Calcium 28%
Iron 5%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Black-eyed peas are actually very versatile and once you try this easy salad, which tastes even better the next day, it may just become a staple for a quick lunch or side dish. 

Black Eyed Pea Salad
Black-Eyed Pea Salad
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Black Eyed Pea Salad
Black-Eyed Pea Salad
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Ingredients
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 3 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 cans black-eyed peas drained and rinsed
  • 1 green onion, sliced thin
  • 1/2 bunch parsley, chopped
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Instructions
  1. In a small bowl, whisk together the honey and vinegar. Slowly whisk in the olive oil, salt and pepper until well combined.
  2. In a medium size bowl, combine the black-eyed peas, green onion, and parsley. Drizzle the dressing over and toss gently to mix well. Refrigerate the salad until ready to serve. For best flavor, chill for at least 2 hours.
Recipe Notes

Make Ahead: This salad can be made up to 2 days ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator until ready to serve. 

Nutrition Facts
Black-Eyed Pea Salad
Amount Per Serving
Calories 166 Calories from Fat 63
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 7g 11%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 494mg 21%
Total Carbohydrates 20g 7%
Dietary Fiber 4g 16%
Sugars 1g
Protein 5g 10%
Vitamin A 13%
Vitamin C 14%
Calcium 3%
Iron 10%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Happy New Year!

Start the new year with luck and fortune by making sure you eat your greens and your black-eyed peas. These 2 recipes are a nice spin on traditional ones.

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