Originally from a Sunset Magazine clipping, but I’ve changed it to make it my own. Then I changed it some more. I’ve even made it with pinto beans and anasazi beans, instead of black-eyed peas. Some might call that sacrilege, but I call it yummy.

On New Year’s Day, it must be made with black-eyed peas — Southerners believe that you must eat black-eyed peas on New Year’s Day for luck (see “What’s Your Lucky Food?”).

Cowboy Caviar
Cowboy Caviar, 2020 version

2T red wine vinegar
1-1/2 – 2 t hot sauce
1-1/2 t salad or olive oil
1 clove garlic
1/8 t pepper
1 can black-eyed peas (or cook up 1/2 c dried)
1 can corn kernels (or equivalent frozen corn, thawed)
2/3 c thinly-sliced green onions
2/3 c chopped cilantro
1/2 lb tomatoes, coarsely chopped (or 1 15-oz can drained)
1 firm-ripe avocado
1/2 sweet red or green bell pepper (optional)
Handful of fresh parsley, chopped (optional)
2 C shredded cabbage (optional)
Tortilla chips (optional)
Salt to taste

Drain and rinse corn and peas, cut up avocado and veggies. Mix all except chips and salt to taste. If you leave out the cabbage and dice the peppers very small, you can serve it as a dip with the tortilla chips.

2010 notes: Some people would call it sacrilege to make this without the avocado. But I’m so tired of buying avocadoes that go black before they ripen that I sometimes leave it out. As long as there’s plenty of red, yellow, and green color in the salad, and that powerful cilantro taste, it’s just fine.

2020 notes: This year, I realized you can omit the oil if you use a nice, ripe Haas avocado. Since I’ve gotten better at finding those, I no longer consider it optional in this recipe.


One response to “Cowboy Caviar”

  1. Kim Avatar

    Found this which I remember you wanted ages ago, I seem to have mislaid my copy so happy to find it.
    Hope you had a good time in Mexico, we did. Talk to you soon, Sara