It’s said that you make your own luck. What better way to start that construction than on New Year’s Day doing what you need to do any way – eat. Many cultures have the belief that certain foods consumed on the first day of
the year will bring wealth, contentment and long life.
If you’re still planning you New Year’s Eve menu, consider putting one or more of these lucky seven items on your table:
- Black-eyed peas. The dark “eye” of this bean represents money. Their reputation as a being lucky was enhanced during the Civil War. Northern troops stripped the South of most of its food but passed over black-eyed peas because they thought they were fed to animals. Black-eyes peas helped Southerners survive the throes of war and became a popular menu item long after.
- Ham. The richness of ham, or any pork product, symbolizes a year rich with happiness.
- Greens. Lettuce, collards, kale or any other green leafy produce resembles money and means prosperity in the New Year. Sauerkraut is included in this category because it’s fermented cabbage. Pork and sauerkraut are popular New Year’s Day meals.
- Donuts. Any circular food eaten at midnight is supposedly lucky. Other examples include bagels or circular cakes. However, I would eat donuts even if they brought bad luck!
- Grapes. Specifically 12 grapes. Each grape represents a month of the year. If one is bitter, what out for that month! Fruit in general is thought to be lucky.
- Lentils or other beans. The plump up when soaked in water symbolizing growing wealth.
- Noodles. Symbols of long life.
While doing my research for this blog I found some interesting websites that delve deeper into the mean of these lucky foods, have other examples as well as offering recipes. Check them out:
Wishing you all a 2015 filled with good health, good luck and happiness!
Cora Weisenberger has been writing about food since 1997, first for her hometown newspaper and later for national magazines. She’s a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism, and can be found rattling about her suburban Chicago kitchen preparing goodies for hubby, Greg, and sons David and Jonathan. Follow her on Twitter @CoraWeis.