Tuesday, December 27, 2011

What are your New Years Superstitions?

Today I woke up with the need to focus on the idea of, the benefits of, and the great food of culturally influenced New Years Superstitions.  What an awesome opportunity to build a discussion with all of BB's readers and friends!!!


Seriously.  Think about it.  
I am so curious I simply want to hear from you.  What is it that you do to make your New Year's full of luck, wealth, good fait, etc??




I have had the opportunity to live in different areas of the country, and while in each, I picked up a few interesting tidbits about traditional (and in some areas absolutely necessary) Foods for The kick off of January.

I am obsessed with weird traditions.  In France when you are engaged friends through Mayo at you.  True story, I've taken a part in it.  But New Years -- This fascinates me SO much.

So far I have researched and found the following foods of interest:

New Years Pretzels*
Lentil Soup
Hoppin’ Joe
Black Eyed Pea Hummus
Udon Noodle Soup
“Long Noodle” Salad
Collard Greens with Pork and Bacon
Sauerkraut Braised Pork Chops*

But Why you ask?  What exactly is a New Years Tradition?  Well to start, if you refer back to the list, two items are starred.  Growing up, if we didn't eat those on New Years, the year would be a dim one.  Seriously! 
As a kid I feared that my sauerkraut held magical powers, and the pretzel was twisted with good luck.  I'd stuff my face with so much of this superstitious food, I'd almost smell like cabbage the next day!

But from my travels, I have realized the following are also held tight in many households come the New Year.  If you, like myself, find these interesting and albeit unique, then I hope you can find something to share with friends! 
I had no idea so many traditions existed, and I simply want to hear from you!  What do YOU do for New Years? 
Here are many traditions I have come across:
Lentil Soup:  Lentils are thought to look like coins, and in many areas around the world Lentil Soup is thought to provide wealth and financial promise for the New Year when eaten On and around New Years Day.

“Hoppin’ Joe”: A mixture of Black Eyed Peas and Rice.  Black Eyed peas are HUGE in the south for New Years because they are though to bring so much Financial success to those who enjoy it on New Years.  The idea is for every one pea you eat you will have a day of financial luck.

For the luck this can bring, if you are not a Bean person, you could also make a Black Eyed Pea Hummus dip so we can all assure a year of success!

Influenced by many Asian cultures, Long Noodles have also become a New Years Tradition for many households.  The idea behind the long noodle is the shape, and length, represents a long and healthy life ahead of you.  Because of this, no broken noodles should be eaten.

Sesame Rice (or Long Noodle) Salad.  SImple, cool, and full of flavor!  Click for Recipe.
Collard Greens speak for themselves!  The Green Color is often believed to help those who eat it make wise financial decisions for the New Year Ahead.  Pork is also a great superstitious food, and nothing is better that pork and greens!

Pork is believed to be the best for New Years.  The history behind it is one should eat Pork for New Years and to start the year, because Chickens Scratch Backwards, thus are bad luck.  Cows stand still, which presents an issue that so will you, but Pigs will root themselves forward.  Because of this, so many cultures believe that Pork is a necessary staple for new years, while poultry and beef are bad luck!  If you want to find yourself making progress, pork is the feast for you!

Pork Stuffed Cabbage is wonderful to get the best of Pork and Cabbage this New Years!  Click for Recipe.
My mother really is a firm believer in Pork and sauerkraut for the New Years.  My husband likes to argue that you don't eat it on New Years Eve, just New Years Day.   But all I know is Pork is supposed to be the BEST meal for New Years for an amazing year of health and wealth.

Me, I have no problem eating a bowl of sauerkraut without the pork.  Being a vegetarian does not hold me back from superstition!

At any rate, all these are so fascinating to me and I need to know more!  I want to hear from all of you.  What do you do on New Years!?

Happy 2012!!

4 comments:

  1. Your Ukrainian LittleDecember 27, 2011 at 10:27 AM

    In our family, we make the Ukrainian 3 kings cake... And to add to the tradition, we make up a story to go along with it... Since no one remembers the original anymore! There is a layer with poppy seeds (my fave), a layer with raisins, and a layer with nuts. We cover the cake with heavy whipped cream and add different fruits in between the layers. And the recipe comes straight from generations and generations of family members. Each year we make the cake, we not only get the pleasure of eating it, but also the added benefit of remembering our past roots and in a way celebrating the holidays with them.

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  2. We have Hogmanay in Scotland as we usually have whisky soaked trifle or some sort of boozy fruit cake.

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  3. Little! I love it. I am absolutely mazed and must see pictures this year of this wonderous cake! How delicious sounding!

    My family must have the Russian food gene, hence the meat and cabbage lol. Thanks for sharing. It sounds like such a fabulous family tradition, full of memories and stories. The best kind of holiday!

    as for the whiskey soaked trifle and boozey fruit cake.... now we're talking! Nothing like mixing the cocktails into the food ;) Once, in Italian class, we shared a "Drunk Cake". Literally an angel like food cake soaked in tons of fruit and booze. Everyone that day spoke perfect Italian... at least from what I can recall haha!

    Thanks for sharing. Aside from food, are there any other traditions shared? I like to open the door to let the old air out and the new air in.... I have no idea where this came from lol!!!

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  4. rozking55: (from Foodbuzz)

    My New Years tradition is to eat Black eye peas and any type of pork dish on new years day.

    It’s a deeply rooted American Southern Tradition, it’s supposed to bring you good luck for the new year.

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