Peace Soup

Before leaving for Ireland earlier this month I reflected on what small gesture could I make to promote the idea of peace to all that I would encounter on my journey. 

The idea that I came up with was a recipe for a Peace Soup. 

Unfortunately, I had this idea late in the planning stages of the trip and I was not able to have it printed on index cards before departing. Nevertheless I still thought it was a good idea and worth sharing. One of my initial concerns about the recipe was not knowing if all the ingredients would be readily available in Ireland. I’ve since learned all the ingredients in the recipe are available in Ireland.

I believe the ingredients reflected in the recipe are dear to all U.S. Southerners in general regardless of their position on Civil Rights. Potatoes are a staple in Irish culinary customs and this recipe would certainly be welcomed. Kale is a new ingredient more Americans and Irish are consuming. African Americans are more accustom to the Collard Green and either works well in this recipe. The “tayto,” and its cousin, the sweet potato, in my opinion, represents the transatlantic story of African and Irish diaspora and the staple each society depended upon for survival before and after their arrival to America. 

Vegetarian Peace Soup  (aka Black Eyed Pea Soup with Sweet Potatoes and Kale)


2 medium sweet potatoes, medium diced

1 sweet onion, diced

2 stalks celery, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 small jalapeno, diced

1 and 1/2 cups black eyed peas, cooked

1 (15.4 ounces) can petite diced tomatoes, with juice

4 cups vegetable broth

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)

1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika

1/2 teaspoon salt

3 cups chopped kale, loosely packed


  • In a large pot or dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Once hot, add diced onions, celery, and sweet potatoes. Saute 5-7 minutes, until the onion and celery are softened. Add the garlic and jalapeño and saute for 1 more minute.
  • Stir in the cooked black-eyed peas, diced tomatoes with juice, vegetable broth, cayenne pepper, smoked paprika, and salt.
  • Bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer. Cover and simmer the soup until the sweet potatoes are softened, about 15-20 minutes.
  • Once the sweet potatoes are cooked, add in the chopped greens. Taste for salt and spice. Enjoy!


Black eyed peas are also known as cowpeas, crowder peas, black-eye beans, lobiya, chawli. Add frozen or canned black eyed peas directly to the pot; they don’t need to be heated up in advance.

Use your favorite dark leafy green, such as kale or collard greens. You can also use spinach, but keep in mind that it wilts a lot more quickly than heartier greens.

This recipe is from the Cozy Peach Kitchen