Hoppin John 

Makes 7 cupsBlack-eyed Peas4 slices thick bacon, cut into 1/2″ pieces1 stalk celery, chopped1 small onion, chopped1 garlic clove, peeled and pressed1/2 lb. dry black-eyed peas, picked through and rinsed2 cups water1 can (14 1/2 oz.) chicken broth1 tsp. salt1 bay leaf1/4 tsp. dried thymePinch of ground cayenne5 oz. frozen spinach, thawed and drained wellPlace bacon in a 3 quart saucepan. Cook over medium heat until fat is rendered and bacon is crisp. Remove bacon with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Set aside.Remove all but 1 Tbsp. bacon fat. Add celery and onion. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring, until softened, about 10 minutes. Add garlic and cook 1 minute more.Add the black-eyed peas, water, broth, salt, bay leaf, thyme and cayenne. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer stirring occasionally until peas are tender, about 40 minutes. Discard bay leaf. Add spinach and heat through.While the peas are cooking prepare rice:1 cup white, long-grain rice, soaked for an hour in cold water to cover and 1 tsp. kosher salt then rinsed well under cold water2 Tbsp. unsalted butter1 can (14 1/2 oz.) chicken broth1/4 tsp. kosher saltIn a large 10″ skillet melt butter over medium-low heat. Add rice and stir to coat evenly with butter. Cook, stirring until rice gives off a nutty scent, about 1 minute. Immediately add chicken broth and salt. Stir to combine. Bring to a low boil. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 5 minutes. Cover and simmer for 5 minutes more. Turn off heat and let sit covered for 15 minutes. Do not uncover until time is up.In a large bowl, gently combine black-eyed pea mixture with rice. Top with reserved bacon and serve.Recipe Courtesy: Cathy Speronis