Easy Black- Eyed Peas and Tomatoes

• 1 pound dry black-eyed peas (presoaked according to package instructions)
• 6 cups water
• 1 onion, chopped
• 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained
• 1 jalapeño pepper, finely chopped
• 1 clove garlic, minced
• 1 tablespoon chili powder
• salt to taste
• low fat shredded cheese (optional topping)
• 4 slices bacon, chopped (optional) or 1 TBS oil

If bacon is used, place the bacon in a large, deep skillet, and cook over medium heat, until evenly browned, about 10 minutes. Remove the bacon and set aside to use as a topping for the peas. Sauté the onion in the bacon drippings (or oil if bacon is not used) until tender. Add black eyed peas, water, tomatoes, jalapeno pepper, garlic, and chili powder to the onions in the skillet and stir to combine. Cover and cook over medium heat for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until the peas are tender. Season to taste. Add additional water, if necessary. Serve garnished with chopped bacon or low fat cheese.