Each New Year’s, revelers around the world chow down on specific foods to summon good luck for the next 365 days. While some traditions call for noodles and others call for fruit, all the edibles connote forward movement, prosperity and health. I love the idea!
Whether or not you’re superstitious, try one of these common celebratory eats. If no luck comes your way, at least you’ll go into the new year with a full belly!!
** Long Noodles: Popular in China, Japan and other Asian countries, you eat long noodles for longetivity!
** Pork: In Cuba, Spain, Portugal, Hungary and Austria, pigs symbolize progress. Some say it’s because the pig never move backward, while others believe it’s all in their feeding habits (they push their snouts forward along the ground when rooting for food). For you non-bacon eaters, it’s not limited to pork—foods shaped like pigs (think cutout cookies) count, too!!!!
** Round Fruits: the number of pieces varies by region, but eating any round fruit is a common New Year’s tradition. In the Philippines, the custom calls for 13, considered a lucky number; in Europe and North America, it calls for 12, which represents the months in a year (I thought it was the strokes of the clock!!).
** Greens: From the coastal American South to Europe, people eat green leafy veggies—including kale, collards and cabbage—on New Year’s Day because of their color and appearance, which resembles paper cash. Belief has it, the more you eat, the more prosperous you’ll be (and the healthier, too!).
** Pomegranate: In Turkey, pomegranates represent good luck for many reasons: their red color, which represents the human heart, denotes life and fertility; their medicinal properties represent health; and their abundant, round seeds represent prosperity—all things everyone hopes for in any fresh start.
** Black Eyed Peas / Lentils: Considered good luck due to their penny-like appearance and abundance! Deeper into the myth: When cooked, lentils plump with water, symbolizing growing wealth. BEP are popular in the States, while lentils are considered good luck maily in Hungary & Italy.
** Corn bread: cornbread is especially venerated as a New Year’s treat in the southern United States. Why? Its color resembles that of gold. To ensure extra luck, some people add extra corn kernels, which are emblematic of golden nuggets.
Now for the ones you won’t see me eating!! Can I say yucky!! haha
** Whole Fish: the Chinese word for “fish” sounds like the word for “abundance,” one of the many reasons fish has become a go-to good luck food. Also, it’s apparently important for the fish to be served with the head and tail intact to ensure a good year, from start to finish.
** Pickled Herring: In Germany, Poland and Scandinavia, it’s believed that eating herring at the stroke of midnight will ensure a year of bounty. Also, their silvery color resembles that of coins, a good omen for future fortune.
May it be pickled herring or a handful of grapes, I hope and wish you the best for the start of 2011! See you in the new year!
Thanks womansday.com for the list!