Monday, March 31, 2008

Texas Caviar --Jazzed version


This is probably my #1 requested recipe. Well, it's not MY recipe. I filched it off a bunco friend years ago! I've only made minor tweaks. Don't be fooled. This is not your regular "Texas Caviar"--this one is jazzed up and healthier with more fresh veggies and feta. I bring it to parties and pot lucks all the time, and many requests have come from native Texans!

1 can black-eyed peas, drain and rinse
*1 can field peas, drain and rinse (if you don't have these in your area, just use another can of black-eyed peas)
2 small cans sliced black olives, drain and chop a little more
1 yellow bell pepper, finely chopped
1 red bell pepper, finely chopped (green peppers are fine, but yellow & red just make it so purty...and a bit sweeter!)
1/4 cup red onion, finely chopped
1/3-1/2 cup+ Italian dressing —just enough to hold everything together, I use light
Small bunch fresh cilantro, pull off stems and chop (~1/3-1/2 cup when chopped)
1 large ripe, but still firm, Hass avocado (or 2 small), diced
8 oz. feta cheese (don’t use crumbled--the solid looks neater), small diced

Add all ingredients to medium bowl and stir gently to mix well. I add the dressing and avocado last--shortly before it is served. Serve with family-sized bag of Frito (big) Scoops or sturdy tortilla chips (in a pinch).

* Because many people I've given this recipe to have never heard of field peas, I've added this photo to show you what the can I use looks like. Field peas are smaller than black-eyed peas, and they're reddish in color.

Field peas may not be found in all parts of the country. Mom says they're not in Sacramento, my uncle found them in Dubuque, none in St. Paul or Albuquerque, but they're about everywhere in the South. I can't tell you how many cases of these we've brought with us on our vacations...to leave a stash with friends and family so they can continue making this recipe. Let me know if you can find them in your area.

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