Black-eyed Peas With Spinach – Μαυρομάτικα me Σπανάκι (Mavromatika me Spanaki)
If you’ve been following us, you may have noticed a little lull in our postings. As a matter of fact, this is the longest we’ve gone without a post. Unfortunately, there isn’t a good reason as to why that is beyond the fact that we got a little sick and then played catch up with everything we have going on. However, moving forward, we’re back on track and are exciting to continue our exploration into Greek cuisine!
The Greek dish we have for you today is a 100% vegetarian recipe. Popular during Lent, this stew is filling, healthy, and will make your home smell fantastic as it’s simmering away.
Jane and I really like cooking with legumes (beans) but sometimes forget to prep them. For example when making Fassolatha, the “national dish of Greece,” the navy beans need to be soaked overnight, or for at least 12 hours. Yet with black-eyed peas, this is not the case. They just need to be rinsed and you’re ready to go.
What was really interesting about this dish is that it has been quite some time since both Jane and I had black-eyed peas (aka California Blackeye). We we’re not 100% sure if we liked them. There was only one way to test that however, and it was to try them again.
I’m happy to report that, yes, yes we do like them. So much so that we’re having this again for lunch today.
Traditionally, you may find this recipe without the greens, in this case spinach. While it is becoming more and more popular to see it made with varying ingredients, things like chard, celery, whatever the chef has leftovers of, etc., know that originally this was made without anything, highlighting the beans flavors. We decided to add the spinach because we like it and thought it would give it a nice flavor profile. So feel free to get creative with whatever you have on hand. If you find a combination that works, let us know!
Below is our recipe for Μαυρομάτικα me Σπανάκι. As always, we hope you enjoy!
- 1 cup black-eyed peas
- ½ cup olive oil
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 2-3 cups spinach (we cut them off the stems, washed, and added - did not dice)
- 2-3 garlic cloves, pressed
- 14.8 ounce can of diced tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon oregano
- 2 sprigs of thyme
- Pour black-eyed peas into colander and rinse well with water, set aside.
- Add olive oil to large pan, and heat over medium heat.
- Add diced onions and cook until translucent and tender, about 5 minutes.
- Add spinach and cook until wilted.
- Add garlic, diced tomatoes can, tomato paste, oregano, salt and pepper, mix well.
- Add black-eyed peas, incorporate with tomato mixture.
- Add enough water so the beans are covered by about ½ inch.
- Bring to boil then reduce to simmer, cover and let cook for 45 minutes, or until beans are tender.*
- Once done, remove from heat, plate, and serve!