Updated: Sep 4, 2019
When we cut inflammatory foods from our diet, we had to learn alternative ways to season things like greens and cowpeas or field peas (white acres, blackeyes, etc.) In the past, we always used a ham hock, bacon, or bacon fat. Now, that wasn't an option. Things like liquid smoke was out of the question because there were too many unknowns on how our daughter would handle the ingredients - her immune system was in hyper-mode and was reacting to many things.
What we found that worked best for us was chicken broth and a little fennel seed. Mind you, this still took some getting used to. For a time, I would only buy GreenWise chicken breasts with the skin on and bone in. I would then skin it and de-bone it and use this for my chicken broth. Ice cube trays are perfect to freeze the broth in for future use and this became a staple at my house, especially for seasoning foods. Then one day, my husband took a small about of fennel seeds, ground them in our mortar and pestle, and added them to the pot - I think we tried this in field peas first. It gave it a bit of meat flavor - almost a "sasaugy" (is that even a word?) flavor. It helped to trick the taste buds just enough. The trick is to not get too much fennel seed or it will over power the peas or greens.
Do you have alternate ways to season a pot of green or field peas? What are your favorites?