I have had an abundance of sweet and tender spinach in my CSA bag from La Nay Ferme. We have been making a lot of basic salads with it, but I recently came across some interesting recipes for Greek and Middle Eastern black-eyed peas and spinach. My version is adapted from Tessa Kiros’ charming book Falling Cloudberries. The flavors are heightened by adding lemon juice, and the dish is refreshingly garnished with green onions, parsley, and tomato. You can make this as a side dish but it is also delicious warmed and set inside a pita for a very tasty lunch sandwich.
Greek-style Spinach with Black-eyed Peas
1/4 c. extra virgin olive oil + 1-2 Tbsp.
1 c. chopped onion
3 cloves garlic, chopped
4 c. packed fresh spinach, rinsed
salt and pepper
1-1/2 c. cooked black-eyed peas or 1 (15 oz.) can black-eyed peas, rinsed and drained
2 generous pinches Aleppo pepper or red pepper flakes to taste
juice of half a medium lemon
2 green onions, chopped
1/2 c. cherry tomatoes, quartered
1/4 c. chopped Italian flat leaf parsley
To cook black-eyed peas, place 1 cup dried beans in a saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 10 minutes. Drain and place in a slow cooker. Add 6 cups cold water (bay leaf optional). Cover and cook on high for 2 hours. Turn off heat and add 1 tsp. kosher salt. Let sit 30 minutes, then drain. Use 1-1/2 cups for the recipe. Save the rest for another use. Heat 1/4 c. olive oil in sauté pan on medium heat. Add onions and sauté until onions are melting and golden. It should take 7-10 minutes. Add garlic and sauté 1-2 minutes to soften but not brown. Add spinach, then salt and pepper to taste. Sauté 3 minutes to wilt and soften spinach. Add cooked black-eyed peas and Aleppo pepper or pepper flakes. Taste and adjust salt and pepper. Sauté for 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add lemon juice, then remove to a serving bowl. Drizzle with 1-2 Tbsp. olive oil, then garnish with chopped green onions, tomatoes, and parsley. Serves 4 as a side dish.