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Friday, January 06, 2006

Hoppinjohn

In the Americas rice-and-bean dishes are associated primarily with peoples of African ancestry, and with justice...Hoppin' John is the signature dish of South Carolina, black and white.  As Helen Woodward wrote in her receipt for it in Two Hundred Years of Charleston Cooking (1976):  "South Carolinians, like my husband, who have been away from home a long time, if they feel a culinary homesickness, always long for something called Hoppin' John, with the accent on John."  Yankee though I be, I too get yearnings for it because it is such a satisfying dish; if, in addition, it had associations with home and the days of my youth, those feelings would be even more intense, I'm sure.  Fortunately, although it seems so rooted in its home territory, it is a dish that travels well, always supposing that one can find the proper peas -- and black-eye peas are everywhere available in the United States -- and the proper receipt, which must be a home grown South Carolina receipt.

          -- Karen Hess, The Carolina Rice Kitchen:  The African Connection (University of South Carolina Press, 1992)

Posted by Bakerina at 11:51 PM in valentines • (2) Comments

heeeeee.  smile e, you could probably answer this for me:  Is Zatarain’s still alive and kicking?  For all of my fooling in the Scrine knitting adventure yesterday, I was serious about trying my hand at root beer, and all of the websites I’ve studied said that Zatarain’s root beer extract is the way to go.

Razz, you’re back!  I needs must update your URL!  It’s so good to see you.  Contrition is not necessary, though.  smile

Bakerina on 01/07/06 at 10:04 AM  

Oh, babies!  Who’d have dreamed that such vigorous and enthusiastic dialogue could come from one little picture?  Not me, although I certainly should have, considering how smart and kind everyone is around here.  smile I’ve been trying to write the follow-up post, as well as starting some other posts, but today has been a bit of a crunchy day, and I’m not happy with anything I’ve written.  I can say in the meantime, though…

e is right:  The pot is a Le Creuset Dutch oven; I think it’s a 4-quart. 

Shauna, I did indeed see your New Year’s Day post, and I think I know why your batch came out a bit glurby, and how you can fix that.  All will be revealed, I promise.  smile

Oh, Owen, you do make a girl blush.  smile The rice is basmati, which I used just because it’s the rice we have around.  I buy it in 11-pound bags from the Pakistani grocery down the street; it’s gorgeous rice and it’s dead cheap.  I’ve never tried the Carolina gold that Lindy mentions, but I’ll bet it’s great.  You definitely want long-grain rice, though, as short grain will make it sticky, and traditional Hoppin’ John, according to Mrs. Hess, is a bean pilau, i.e. beans and dry (but not dried-out) rice.  But I promise that complete directions will be on the way, really and truly!

Bakerina on 01/08/06 at 11:32 PM  
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