Sunday, May 6, 2012

DFJ’s Blackeye Pea Relish

This weekend, I am proud of myself for refusing to be upset and sulky. Here are the redeeming features of my weekend that started out disappointing:

1. This salsa: DFJ’s Blackeye Pea Relish. DFJ is very proud of it and rightly so, because it is delish! So, when we initially thought we were going to a barbeque this weekend, DFJ was excited about making this salsa to share. Coincidentally, this week’s Food Matter’s Project recipe, chosen by Alissa (BIG EATS... tiny kitchen), is Mark Bittman’s Five Quick Salsas for Chips, Dips, and Other Stuff. Miss Alissa definitely thought ahead and picked something that would be a hit at a Cinco de Mayo or Derby Weekend party. Just perfect! Thank you Alissa! To see the original recipe, visit her beautiful website and make sure to check out how other FMP members made their salsas.

Even though the barbeque did not happen, we still made this salsa and are enjoying it immensely. This recipe is actually quite close to a combination of three choices in Bittman’s recipe: basic pico de gallo + tomatillo-black bean salsa + corn salsa.  Here is a recipe of DFJ’s relish that has been a hit everywhere we brought it to.

DFJ’s Blackeye Pea Relish (Makes a lot… a whole lot)
(slightly adapted from DFJ’s uncle’s recipe)

Mix together in a small bowl:

¼ cup apple cider vinegar
¼ cup olive oil
¼ cup ketchup
1 tbsp hot sauce (or more to taste), (see note #1)
1 ½ tbsp sugar
½ tsp salt
juice of one Meyer lemon or a small lemon

Mix together in a large bowl: (see note #2 on dicing vegetables)

1, 15.25 oz can blackeye peas, drained and rinsed
1, 15.25 oz can yellow corn, drained (see note #3)
1 large green bell pepper, diced
4 large tomatoes, seeded and diced
1 medium red onion, diced (feel free to use any onion)
1, 2 oz jar diced pimientos
2 red chilis, seeded and diced

Pour the dressing into the chopped vegetables and mix thoroughly but gently, taking care not to mash the tomatoes and the beans. Taste and add more hot sauce and/or salt to your preference. Let sit 1-2 hours before serving… or better yet, make this the night before or the morning of. The longer it sits, the better it gets, just make sure to give it another gentle round of mixing before serving.   

1. I recommend using either: Tapatio, Tabasco, or Frank’s RedHot Sauce. 
2. When dicing the fresh ingredients, make sure to chop them as small as you can get (like corn kernel small).   
DFJ had to include his beer in the picture...
After this picture was taken, these onion pieces were chopped some more.
3. When corn is in season, I will definitely try Bittman’s suggestion and get them fresh, roast them, shave the kernels off the cobs, and then add them into this salsa.

Warning: This makes for a lot of salsa…

The salsa overflowed from the huge bowl...

into this tiny one.

 2. A delicious Saturday lunch of all the leftover goodies from this week: homemade pita bread that turned into puffy balls with grapes and Brie. Leftover pasta with phad thai veggies (from my Phad Thai Veggie Tacos recipe). It was a surprisingly wonderful combination especially with the added leftover spicy honey cashew sauce (recipe to be posted soon) and some freshly grated Pecorino Romano.

3. Saturday Workout: Biked to the gym + 30 minute walk on the treadmill while reading my Steve Jobs book + quick weight lifting session + 1 hour bike ride with DFJ + Frisbee at an awesome park we randomly found.

me and Alyssa (my bike)

4. Watched Melancholia (incredibly sad) while enjoying some chips and the salsa.

5. Sunday Workout: Biked to the gym + 1 mile run on the treadmill + weight lifting session + 20 minutes on the elliptical with my Steve Jobs book + 7 lap swim + biked back home + 1 hour of yoga while waiting for carnitas to cook. 

6. The carnitas turned out great and we had another fabulous Mexican dinner at home. I will be sharing the recipe this week. The salsa was a perfect addition to the tacos!

7. This rye shortbread with raspberries that just came out of the oven. I would love to share the rye shortbread recipe but I found this in the freezer earlier this evening and it is a leftover half from something I made a while ago, which I unfortunately lost the recipe for. The raspberry filling is just some frozen raspberries from last summer that needed to be used up. I cooked two small bags full of it in a pot with about a teaspoon of vanilla sugar, a tablespoon of honey, and some blueberry agave nectar.

8. Phone conversation with my sweet sister, Therese.

Thanks for stopping by and have a great week everyone!


  1. I want to try the version with fresh corn, too, once it is in season. But your version looks great, too.

  2. Your salsa sounds delicious! Corn, beans, and tomatoes—sounds great.

  3. Haha, I read the title to this post, but all I saw was "DFJ's blackeye" and I thought "oh no! what happened!" But then I read the rest of it :p.
    I would be proud to have made this too. I wish I had family recipes passed to me, but most people in my family are really big on eating out :(

  4. Your salsa looks delicious!

  5. I made the corn relish with my very sad, not quite ready corn. I'll have to try again in a few months!
    Your meal looks wonderful!

  6. The carnitas look amazing! I can't wait to see the recipe! Yum! Also, you had one busy weekend- wow!

  7. This looks very delicious and healthy. I can snack on this relish at all time.

    Nice name for your bike! I enjoy getting to know you with your healthy lifestyle.

  8. looks delish! i poured my salsa over mexican food too (chicken tacos). and i love the fact that you named your bicycle!

  9. One of the advantages of this project is being introduced to regional foods. I've never cooked with black-eyed peas, so I will have to give this a try.

  10. That salsa sounds so interesting! Lots of amazing food happening over there :)

  11. Salsa equals summer and that can never be wrong, right?

  12. Wow what a great idea!! Looks and sounds delicious!

  13. Love the addition of black eyed peas! Sounds great!

  14. I am loving this salsa! With the protein from the black-eyed peas I'm thinking this would be great on some nachos!

    Also, you are totally a workout master this weekend! i love how you do a whole mix of different types of exercise.

  15. The salsa looks delicious Margarita! I love the colors and I am sure the taste was as great! I can see you had a full and enjoyable weekend there! Have a great week too!


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