Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Hoppin' John Salad for Lunch

     Hoppin' John is a beans and rice dish from the south that is traditionally made on New Year's Day for good luck.  I don't know about you, but I need good luck all throughout the year, so I have no problem making this salad right smack in the middle of summer.  The best thing about it is that you can make it one day (or night) and have a healthy, convenient lunch ready for the next 3-4 days.  The original Hoppin' John dish is made with bacon and who knows what else--I'm not from the south--but this salad version is much healthier.

   I originally encountered this recipe when my mom was diagnosed with cancer in 2007 and I started my nutrition mission. is home to a group that promotes a plant-based diet for cancer survival  and they have a free cook book that I downloaded, The Survivor's Handbook:  Eating Right for Cancer Survival.  Even for someone without cancer, this is a great resource for transitioning to a plant-based diet and has a ton of great recipes!  They have a Hoppin' John Salad recipe that was the inspiration for my salad.  I made a few changes to make it more colorful and crunchy, but you should check out the book because the original recipe is great, too.

Hoppin' John Salad
Adapted from The Survivor's Handbook:  Eating Right for Cancer Survival

For the salad: 
1 (15.5 ounce) can black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed
1 cup cooked brown rice
1/2 cup finely sliced green onions
1 celery stalk, finely sliced
1 large carrot, cut in half length-wise and thinly sliced

For the vinaigrette:
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt

In a small bowl, whisk together the rice vinegar, olive oil, and salt.  Set aside.  In another bowl, mix together the salad ingredients.  Drizzle the vinaigrette over the salad and mix gently.  If you have time, refrigerate for a few hours.  If you need it now, eat it right away!  Serve alone or over a bed of spinach or your favorite lettuce/greens.

Yield:  4 large servings (main course) or 8 small servings (side dish)

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