I subscribe to the theory that if eating black-eyed peas on New Year’s Day brings good luck, then eating them for the month of January provides extra insurance. And who couldn’t use a little extra good fortune these days? So these nutritional powerhouses are a festive way to enjoy your black-eyed peas anytime. As a main course, make them large, as the recipe suggests. But if you’re in need of a starter or hors d’oeuvres for a party, then make them bite-sized. Whether large or small, I think they’re the most irresistible served with my colorful Sun-Dried Tomato Tartar Sauce, and I hope you will too.

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Black-eyed Pea and Spinach Cakes [Vegan]

Serves

4

Ingredients

Tartar Sauce 
  • 1/3 cup vegan mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 3 oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon capers, drained
Cakes
  • 4 cups fresh baby spinach
  • 1 (12-ounce) box firm silken tofu
  • 1 cup loosely packed fresh parsley
  • 1 red bell pepper, coarsely chopped
  • 8 scallions, chopped
  • 1 3/4 cups cooked or 1 (15.5-ounce) can black-eyed peas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup Panko bread crumbs
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon sweet smoked paprika
  • 3/4 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves or ¼ teaspoon dried
  • Pinch garlic powder
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Canola oil
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Preparation

Tartar Sauce
  1. In a small bowl, combine the mayo, lemon juice, sun-dried tomatoes, and capers and stir together. Set aside, or cover and refrigerate until needed.
Cakes
  1. Finely mince the spinach in a food processor and set aside. You should have about 1 cup of spinach.
  2. In a food processor, process the tofu until smooth, then scrape into a medium size mixing bowl. In the same food processor, pulse the parsley, bell pepper, and scallions until finely chopped. Transfer to the bowl with the tofu and add the spinach, black-eyed peas, flour, panko, baking powder, paprika, thyme, garlic powder, and salt and pepper to taste. Stir until well combined.
  3. In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Use an ice cream scoop to spoon four mounds of the mixture into the oil, flattening the tops of each to make a one-inch thick cake. Cook for 2 minutes or until golden brown. If cakes become dark brown, reduce the heat to medium. Flip and cook 2 more minutes or until golden brown. Serve hot, topped with the reserved tartar sauce.


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