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Black Eyed Pea, Corn, and Tomato Salad


Black Eyed pea salad in a bowl, with tortilla chips on the side

We’ve heard from many customers that their favorite way to enjoy Black Eyed Peas is in “Texas Caviar” or “Cowboy Caviar.” After reading endless recipes calling for canned Black Eyed Peas, canned corn, canned chiles, canned tomatoes, and jarred Italian dressing, we were skeptical about this infamous dish. This version we ended up with is closer to a fresh salsa. If you have cooked Pinto beans or Black beans, those would work well here, too, either as a replacement for the Black Eyed Peas, or combined with them. 

  • 1 tablespoon butter or olive oil 
  • 1 white onion, finely chopped (divided use)
  • 1 pound uncooked Rancho Gordo Black Eyed Peas, picked over and rinsed
  • 1 pound fresh tomatoes, cored and diced
  • 1 cup raw corn kernels (from 1 ear of corn)
  • 1 red, orange, or yellow bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 avocado, cubed
  • 1 jalapeño chile, seeded and minced
  • 1 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1 cup fresh lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Tortilla chips, for serving

Makes 4 to 6 servings (as an appetizer)

  1. In a large soup pot over medium heat, warm the butter. Add half of the onion, stirring occasionally until soft, about 10 minutes. Add the peas and enough water to cover the peas by about an inch. Increase heat to high, bringing the contents to a rapid boil. Cook, partially covered, for 10 minutes. Add 2 teaspoons salt and enough water to cover the peas again with about an inch of water. Reduce heat to maintain a gentle simmer; cook until the peas are soft, about 30 minutes. Drain and set aside to cool. (Peas can be cooked in advance and refrigerated.) 
  2. In a bowl, combine the tomatoes, remaining onion, corn, bell pepper, avocado, jalapeño, and cilantro. Add the lime juice, cumin, salt, and pepper. Add the peas; stir gently to mix. Taste and adjust seasonings. 
  3. Rest for at least 15 minutes before serving to let the flavors meld. Serve with tortilla chips.


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