Why have I never thought to top a baked potato with beans and greens? I have no idea. Guess there’s not too much rattling round up there.
However, thanks to Thug Kitchen, I am lucky to have eaten Black Eyed Peas and greens served atop a delicious baked sweet potato. These BEP are smoky and spicy, which is a perfect complement to the sweet potato, and the greens are a lovely bite of fresh (pretend that is phrase people would actually use). I not only have plans for New Years Day next year (the day we southerners eat BEP and greens), but I also have a new favorite BEP recipe, and my mind is now considering other variations to this idea–my next adventure may be broccoli rabe and creamy white beans atop a baked Russet or garlicky spinach with a squeeze of lime over pinto beans and a baked Yukon gold. Possibilities are endless!
Sorry, broccoli–you’ll always be a staple baked tater topping, but you’ve got some competition now.
Smoky Black Eyed Peas and Greens
Loaded Baked Sweet Potato
adapted from Thug Kitchen
- 1 lb, black eyed peas (BEP), washed and soaked 12-24 hours
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 6 tablespoons garlic, minced (5-7 cloves)
- 1 7oz can, chipotles in adobo (look in the Latino foods section)
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 quart, low-sodium vegetable stock
- 4 sweet potatoes, washed and pierced with the tip of a small knife all over
- 1 large bunch of greens (collards, mustard, kale, or chard)
- 5 tablespoons olive oil
- salt + pepper
1. Preheat the oven to 425. Place the washed and pierced sweet potatoes on an aluminum foil-lined sheet and bake about an hour and fifteen minutes, turning once through.
2. Meanwhile, heat the 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large pot. Add the onion and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes. Slice the chipotle peppers (keeping the sauce they sit in) and add the peppers and sauce into the pot along with both kinds of paprika and 3 tablespoons garlic. Cook for a minute.
3. Drain the water from the soaking BEP. Add the BEP and stock to the pot. Season with salt and lots of pepper, to taste. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer cooking until tender and soft (but not mushy), about 45-50 minutes. Stir occasionally and add water as necessary to keep the peas covered.
4. While the BEP cook, do the mis en place for the greens. Wash the greens and remove the stems. Wrapping the greens like a fat cigar, thinly slice into ribbons.
5. When the BEP are done, turn to low and cover (or just turn off; they’ll stay warm). To a large pan or wok, add the remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil and heat. Add the garlic and cook 1 minute. Then, add the greens and toss with tongs, cooking 3-5 minutes until the greens are wilted and cooked through (Kale would need to cook a little longer). Season with salt and pepper to taste.
6. Slice open the baked potatoes and load them up with as much BEP and greens as you can stand (2-3 ladles of BEP per potato; evenly divide the greens among the four potatoes).
There will likely be a few leftover BEP for four potatoes–you could do six potatoes but you’d need to cook additional greens. Or you could just eat the BEP, or maybe mash them the next day and have baked BEP fritters. You’ve got options.
To beans and greens and potatoes,