Happy New Year & Good Luck To All
New Year’s Day is hours away, but I’m preparing the main parts of our meal today. In keeping up with tradition, tomorrow’s meal will consist of several things thought to bring luck for the upcoming year. January 1 is that time when we get to make , set new goals, refresh our lives and make a new start. Who wouldn’t want a bit of luck to get the year started? There are many traditions that centered around the meal for New Year’s Day and one belief is that starting out the year well-fed on January 1, guarantees the same full stomach throughout the year.
I grew up on pork for prosperity, black-eyed peas for coins and greens (collard, mustard, turnip, kale, dandelion, choose your favorite) for paper money. There were always other dishes to choose from, but these were a constant on our table. Out of respect for my parents, they still are. If I broke tradition my mother would never let me hear the end of it.
Here are some other culinary delights considered lucky for January 1.
- Grapes – eat 12 at midnight, 1 for each stroke of the clock
- Pork – pigs root forward and they are rotund
- Fish – it just makes sense
- Sweet and Sour Sauerkraut – good luck
- Cakes (ring-shaped) – in olden days, trinkets & coins were hidden inside
- Legumes – coins
- Cooked Greens – paper money (we’re having collards)
- Noodles – symbols of long life (slurp them whole for even more luck)
This tradition of food bringing good luck also states that some dishes are not a great choice for January 1
- Chicken – they scratch backwards and this may cause regret or dwelling on the past
- Winged Fowls – like the bird, luck may fly away
- Lobster – they crawl backward and luck could do the same
We say eat what you love and love what you eat. Let the items in your feast fit your palette and your pocket. Start the New Year with positive thoughts, good spirit and surround yourself with those who do the same. Have a very safe & HAPPY NEW YEAR!
For more information on the history of January 1 meals, click here