New Year's Delicacies Around the World.

By: Proserpina , 2:36 AM GMT on December 29, 2011

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New Year foods around the world.

The celebration of the New Year on January 1st is a relatively new. The earliest recording of a new year celebration, going back to c. 2000 B.C., is the mid-March celebration in Mesopotamia. The Egyptians, Phoenicians, and Persians began their new year with the Fall Equinox, and the Greeks celebrated theirs on the Winter Solstice.

The early Romans celebrated the New Year on Mach 1, their calendar had only ten months and began with the month of March. The first time that New Year was celebrated on January 1 was in Rome in 153 B.C. Julius Caesar introduced the Julian calendar in 46 B.C., making January 1st the official New Year for the Roman world.

There was a change in the Middle Ages when January 1st was abolished as the beginning of the new year. As a result the new year was celebrated at different times in different places. In 1582, the Gregorian calendar restored January 1 as the first day of the new year. While most Catholic countries adopted the January 1st right away, the Protestant countries continued to celebrate on March 1. For example the British did not adopt the reformed calendar until 1752 and until then they celebrated the new year in March, along with the American colonies.

The one thing that all places have in common is the idea that the food you eat on the first day of the year will bring good luck and prosperity, provided of course you eat the proper foods. The following are a few of the foods that are eaten around the world to insure a lucky year:

In the American South and other parts of the USA people eat Hoppin’ John made with black-eyed peas which will bring plenty of everything for the rest of the year.
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Legumes are very popular in many places besides the USA, for example in Japan, Denmark, Croatia, Slovakia.

Lentils are very popular because they are shaped like little coins or monetary units, hence a symbol of prosperity. In Brazil and Italy, bowls of lentils are served to signify wealth.

Pork is eaten in Germany, usually served with sauerkraut because it is made with cabbage. Green vegetables are considered a lucky dish because their green leaves represent money.

Pork symbolizes the “fat of the land’. If a family had a pig to slaughter they were considered prosperous since they would have food in the coming winter months. The expression ‘pork barrel’ goes back to the time when Americans stored salted pork in wooden barrels and the amount of meat indicated the state of the family’s circumstances. Pork is served for New Year’s dinner in Spain, Portugal, Cuba, and Hungary.

As seen above the Germans serve pork with sauerkraut, and eat a variety of pork based sausages. Americans use ham and ham hocks to flavor the black-eyed peas. People in Pennsylvania and in the Midwest prefer to eat pork ribs and kielbasa sausage with sauerkraut and potatoes. Italy enjoys a gelatinous pork sausage called cotechino, sliced and topped with mustard. (I have never eaten nor seen this ‘delicacy’, thank goodness!).
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Obviously many of the new year food customs go back to an agrarian society when pigs were slaughtered around the time of the winter solstice.

The Vietnamese enjoy watermelon because its red flesh signifies luck. They even dye the seeds red and serve them as delicacies. The Japanese serve red snapper and soba noodles, both a symbol of luck and long life.

Seafood is a symbol of fertility and abundance. Japan serves prawns for long life. People in Germany, Poland, and Scandinavia at the stroke of midnight eat pickled herring. Swedes eat shrimp, salmon, crab, oysters, and anchovies. In Denmark they prefer boiled cod while China serves whole fish, head and tail intact, to symbolize a good beginning and end of the coming year. Lobster is avoided in many cultures because it swims backward!

Cakes and round shaped desserts such as donuts are very popular. The round or ring shape symbolizes the circle of life, coming full circle, and the completing of a year’s cycle. Poland, Hungary, and the Netherlands enjoy donuts. In many countries the cakes are baked with a coin or a trinket inside. Whoever gets the slice with the prize is predicted to have a particularly wonderful year. In Greece the cake is called Vasilopita to honor St. Basil whose life is commemorated on January 1.
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Mexico has a similar ring shaped cake baked with a trinket inside, it is called rosca de reyes.
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Spain
has an interesting custom which started in 1909 when grape growers had an overabundance of grapes. At the first stroke of midnight people start consuming the first of twelve grapes, one at each stroke. Each grape represents a month of the year. (My students used to enjoy this particular custom and they ‘practiced’ the tradition as prescribed. Fortunately no one ever choked on the grapes, and it was fun to watch their cheeks puff up as they added each grape unable to swallow before each stroke. After the grape eating it was time to enjoy the several rosca de reyes brought by me and some of the students.)

Italy, in addition to the cotechino and the lentils, serves a little dessert called chiacchiere. Chiacchiere are made with flattened pieces of dough, fried, drenched with honey, and dusted with powdered sugar. It used to be my favorite New Year’s Day dessert. I say used to be because I have never made this sweet, it was made by my relatives when I was a child. By the way, chiacchiere means gossip, rumor, and are also served for carnival.
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51. Ylee
12:38 AM GMT on January 05, 2012
Hi, Pros! After reading all your posts, I had to do a little research! First of all, although the Patti cams were viewed at night, they showed enough promise that if someone over there brought them to WU, then I probably use them on my blog!

Also, while starting my research, USA.gov's first link of Sicily was this one, about the Allied forces invasion of Sicily in WW2. Very interesting, and I can see why you would be scared!

(next to)Lastly, and to change the subject entirely, how much, if any, do you prune clematis, and if so, is it too late? I kinda did it half way last year, but I don't know if there is a better way.

I'm happy that you and Raindad have decided to go on an exercise regimen; heck, your hubby will probably add some yards to his drives, and that's always a good thing! :)
Member Since: February 3, 2011 Posts: 110 Comments: 18988
49. GardenGrrl
1:05 PM GMT on January 04, 2012
Good Morning,
flying through before off to work. We had Ham-n-Blackeye peas with biscuits for New Years dinner.
Then the next day went and had Romanian food at a friends house.
Starting the year eating good that's for sure.
Member Since: March 25, 2007 Posts: 282 Comments: 11024
48. sandiquiz
10:17 AM GMT on January 04, 2012
How wonderful to "eat" your New Year "luck"!!
We had a lovely morning, first thing, but the now gone grey again. At least we got much needed rain yesterday and and the wind wasn't so bad here. Many wagons blew over in the north, all bridges and high roads were closed and trains stopped running. It wasn't the wind as such - 60-80mph, but the gusts, which were up to 120 mph!

Hope you are well, and having a good first week of January!

Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 318 Comments: 28904
47. shoreacres
2:46 AM GMT on January 03, 2012
Pros, I think you'll get a kick out of this. I laughed myself silly - but of course you have to be of "a certain age" to really enjoy it.

Member Since: October 4, 2004 Posts: 205 Comments: 15288
46. Proserpina
11:48 PM GMT on January 02, 2012
Hubby and I did it! We went to a Japanese restaurant to eat soba noodles for our good luck meal. They were nice an long, so long that I ate them with a fork, Italian style. The waitress was stifling a laugh and I told her it was fine to laugh but I was not going to use chopsticks to eat the long noodles in the soup. Slurping is not my style. Anyways, we have insured our luck for the year. LOL

GG, yes, 2012 has to be a better year than the past one! You had to overcome a huge obstacle, and I had to contend one disaster after another (and some personal health issues). So I pray that 2012 treats us both with more kindness, our WU family too.

Sandi, beautiful photo. I love the precision of those show planes. Thank you.

Hurigo
, good to see you. Happy New Year to you also.

Ylee, we spent the day eating, reading, sleeping. Not bad! We did go out today, after we both exercised. Hubby joined a gym, and I have a new electric treadmill at home. The only exercise I am allowed to do is walking so no gym for me. I am so proud of hubby who so far has followed his doc's exercise 'prescription'.
How about you and family? Did you have a good day?

beel, thank you for the song, I really like it. I had never heard of Regina, nice voice. Happy and healthy 2012 to you!

Grothar, thank you for the New Year's wishes. So now I now what your genealogy root are. Good ones! Buon Anno Grothar!

Shore, thank you for the beautiful New Year's card. Is this one of your own photos? Beautiful photo, beautifully framed. Very artistic.
Glad that you enjoyed the rabbit photo! I laughed silly myself when I first saw it!

HOW IS EVERYONE TODAY? ARE YOU RESTED AND READY TO GO TO WORK TOMORROW?
Member Since: May 6, 2008 Posts: 186 Comments: 19068
45. GardenGrrl
5:34 PM GMT on January 02, 2012
Hi Prose, Happy New Year!
2011 was a tough one for all of us. They say the world ends in 2012. I say let's use 2012 to banish all the crud in our lives and make it an end to that world.

Wishing you Joyful Blessings in 2012 :-)
Member Since: March 25, 2007 Posts: 282 Comments: 11024
44. sandiquiz
5:32 PM GMT on January 02, 2012
A quick **insert photo** for you !!
Hope the day is going well:)

Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 318 Comments: 28904
43. hurigo
5:21 PM GMT on January 02, 2012
Happy New Year 2012 Prose.
Member Since: October 9, 2005 Posts: 100 Comments: 6778
42. Ylee
3:14 AM GMT on January 02, 2012
Hi, Pros! Hope you had a good New Years'!
Member Since: February 3, 2011 Posts: 110 Comments: 18988
41. beell
3:11 AM GMT on January 02, 2012
Oh! I am almost late.
Happy New Year, Prose and Family.

Member Since: September 11, 2007 Posts: 153 Comments: 18208
40. Proserpina
12:28 AM GMT on January 02, 2012
Member Since: May 6, 2008 Posts: 186 Comments: 19068
39. Grothar
4:48 PM GMT on January 01, 2012
Quoting GardenGrrl:
Great blog. Did not know that March was the "New Year" for quite a while.

As for the Germans, Poles and Scandinavians eating pickled herring at midnight, bet they don't kiss much around that time ;-)

Hope you have a great last week of 2011 and a better 2012.


Hey, watch it! Well, since I am part Italian, I am only half insulted. LOL
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 72 Comments: 28721
38. shoreacres
4:46 PM GMT on January 01, 2012

Member Since: October 4, 2004 Posts: 205 Comments: 15288
37. Grothar
4:46 PM GMT on January 01, 2012
Happy New Year, Proserpina.

Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 72 Comments: 28721
36. shoreacres
3:01 PM GMT on January 01, 2012
Pros, I'm laughing myself silly. I saw the pic on Ylee's first, and it took three looks for me to focus enough to figure it out. Funny!
Member Since: October 4, 2004 Posts: 205 Comments: 15288
35. palmettobug53
2:43 PM GMT on January 01, 2012
Happy 2012, Pros! Give my regards to Raindad and the rest of the family.

Thanks for stopping by Dad's.

I planned on doing some blogging yesterday but WU was unavailable until later in the day. Plus, I was sidetracked by a cat, as you've seen on my new thread.

You did have a rough 2011; here's hoping that 2012 will be better.
Member Since: October 7, 2005 Posts: 245 Comments: 26059
34. Proserpina
2:28 PM GMT on January 01, 2012
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WHITE RABBITS X3!

This is as far as my humor goes this morning!


Ylee, January white rabbits to you!

Sandi, white rabbits to you. Safe travels to the rellies!

Cal, happy new year, happy january, happy 2012
Koko says 'ARF'!

weatheringpoints, thank you and HAPPY NEW YEAR TO YOU! I love Haydn music, it is so soothing for me.
White Rabbits x3!

Member Since: May 6, 2008 Posts: 186 Comments: 19068
33. Ylee
9:38 AM GMT on January 01, 2012
Hi, Pros!




Whatever you do, don't be dancing on any tables! Sandi and Shore are just a couple of young whippersnappers who are always looking for trouble, lol!

Hope you have a nice New Years' Day!
Member Since: February 3, 2011 Posts: 110 Comments: 18988
32. sandiquiz
9:05 AM GMT on January 01, 2012
Hi Pros,



I hope you have a happy, healthy and safe 2012 :)
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 318 Comments: 28904
31. calpoppy
3:25 AM GMT on January 01, 2012
Happy New Year, Pros and Koko!!

Member Since: February 18, 2008 Posts: 68 Comments: 4551
30. weatheringpoints
1:53 AM GMT on January 01, 2012


Member Since: February 26, 2008 Posts: 13 Comments: 2028
29. Proserpina
11:45 PM GMT on December 31, 2011
Hi Karen, thank you for the wishes. Same to you and your family.

WHAT! No Rose Parade tomorrow? I am forced to break my tradition of almost 50 years? The only year that I have not watched the Rose Parade on TV was the year 2001 and that's because I was there to see it in person! Horrors, what shall I do tomorrow morning?

Enjoy your enchiladas, traditions are good. I just was chatting on FB with a cousin in Italy. It was about midnight there and he invited me to share his lentils! I commented that I had recently learned about the lentils custom for the Eve and he said that he eats them just because he likes them! Customs and likes intertwined!

Member Since: May 6, 2008 Posts: 186 Comments: 19068
28. SBKaren
11:06 PM GMT on December 31, 2011
Wow - you've had a busy blog! The only thing traditional we eat is turkey enchiladas, and only because I have extra turkey from Thanksgiving (it's been frozen, don't worry!). I was going to make them tonight, but the kids can make it over tomorrow, so I'll have a New Year's Day dinner! I'm making a big cinnamon roll tomorrow. I found the recipe on my local Patch. Here's a link if you are interested. My only problem is we were going to munch on it while watching the Rose Parade, but it's not on until Monday! Ack!!!

Here's wishing a very Happy and Safe New Year's Eve to everyone - and a grand new 2012 tomorrow morning! Remember, the Rose Parade isn't on until Monday (for those that watch)! I won't know what to do tomorrow morning!

Member Since: February 21, 2005 Posts: 200 Comments: 14864
27. Proserpina
5:21 PM GMT on December 31, 2011
Shore and Sandi, you have reminded me about a short story by Julio Cortazar titled "Casa Tomada", or House Taken Over. According to the story, it would explain why the clocks have a mind of their own!

It is an interesting little story by the way.
Member Since: May 6, 2008 Posts: 186 Comments: 19068
26. shoreacres
5:11 PM GMT on December 31, 2011
Mass & Sandi ~ It's even better (or worse) than that. The countdown clock on my page is showing the time to midnight in - Central Standard Time!

Apparently it adjusts itself. Don't ask me how, because I haven't a clue - any more than I can explain how, since I came back from Louisiana, every site I go to is showing me advertisements for Tabasco sauce! LOL
Member Since: October 4, 2004 Posts: 205 Comments: 15288
25. sandiquiz
5:05 PM GMT on December 31, 2011
Mass - Then the computers are taking over the world as it still shows the countdown to my midnight on my computer... this side of the pond!!
Yikes - they are taking over the world so I had better go and hide under the table instead of dance on it!!! lol

Pros - A baby elephant dancing on her table she would not like!! lol

Sent you an outer mail :)

Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 318 Comments: 28904
24. Proserpina
5:01 PM GMT on December 31, 2011
Shore, only you could say it so well! Thank you! Among other things, what you say about the herring, it explains why I had to have mom's cookies this Christmas. I made enough to carry me into the New Year, and I have been eating them everyday since Christmas including this morning. Traditions are so ingrained in us that we do things, eat things at certain times of the year automatically. No explanations needed.

I like your thinking "And tomorrow I'll eat plenty. If the year turns bad, I'll just tell myself, "Think how much worse it could have been if you hadn't eaten those peas!" I will adopt what you say as my thinking as well.

I have always loved the Lee Ann Womack's song 'I Hope You Dance' thank you for posting it and reminding me how much I like listening to it!

Happy New Year and please eat a spoonful of bep for me (I have asked the same of Skye). Vicarious good luck eating!

ADD: I love smoked herring! I have eaten it since I was a little child.
Member Since: May 6, 2008 Posts: 186 Comments: 19068
23. shoreacres
4:47 PM GMT on December 31, 2011
Here you go - your New Year's post reminded me of this. It's a wonderful video, and lovely song.

Member Since: October 4, 2004 Posts: 205 Comments: 15288
22. shoreacres
4:31 PM GMT on December 31, 2011
Morning, Pros ~ I danced on a table, once. It was a very long time ago...

Ylee's comment about the "luck" foods made me stop and think for a minute. Then, it came to me - what if God's given us these foods to bring us luck and we refuse them? That would be ungrateful now, wouldn't it!?

Actually, if you move beyond superstition and such, the tradition of eating blackeyed peas and such for "luck" in the new year is just a different way of acknowledging what we all know - that the future can't be predicted, that we're going to have to depend on resources outside ourselves to get through whatever shows up, and if we bind ourselves together in keeping to the tradition, but may remain bound in the year to come.

There. How's that for Saturday serious? LOL
Me, I've got my jar of pickled herring in the fridge and ready to go - I didn't realize it was any sort of cultural tradition. All I knew was that my dad had to have pickled herring on New Year's, and now every year about this time I'm overcome by the compulsion to buy some and eat it. I don't crave it at any other time of the year - pretty interesting.

I do recommend the blackeyed peas. I like them with lots of onion and smoked ham. I see they're on sale down the road, so I'll pick up some dry and start them soaking. And tomorrow I'll eat plenty. If the year turns bad, I'll just tell myself, "Think how much worse it could have been if you hadn't eaten those peas!"

ADD: My favorite new year's eve activity is a watchnight service in a cathedral. It's the bells, don't you know. ;) I've had the experience of ringing in the new year at Riverside and St. John's in New York, in London (in a Christopher Wren parish church) and Grace Cathedral in San Franciso. Wonderful memories, all!
Member Since: October 4, 2004 Posts: 205 Comments: 15288
21. Proserpina
4:22 PM GMT on December 31, 2011
"Hi Pros .... I shall get kicked out if I dance on the table at my friend's house!! lol"
Sandi, I bet your neighbor will join you! She will be happy for you if you dance, at least I would be!

So we are finally back on WU, I was starting to get withdrawal symptoms!

Happy New Year, and may it bring all that you desire! Hugs, my friend.

Alley
, what a lovely graphic. I went looking for info on the author and found tons of inspirational poems-graphics. THANK YOU for the good wishes and the new site to enjoy.
Happy New Year to you, and to the kitties too. I hope that the year brings you health and all of the contentment that you might desire. Big Hugs.

MASS, thank you, thank you for all of the wonderful graphics-comments-wishes. Yes, let's hope that the coming year will be kind to you, me, our family, our friends, and around the world. Big VA hugs.

Hi Janes, no resolutions here either, but a desire to lose unhealthy weight. My doc would be happy if I lost weight and so would my ego. Happy New Year to you, your family, your students.

Ylee, we have never had any 'lucky' foods in my house nor my parents house. My parents did have traditional foods for all holidays but as tradition not for luck. However there are many families and nationalities that do have 'luck foods' as well as traditional customs. A lot of these customs do come from the early agrarian timing of the new year, or even the Saints Celebrations that come around that time of the year.
I used to go to church on the first day of the year to 'insure' that I went to church throughout the year! I suppose the intent is good but a little paganish?! Anyways, I no longer rush to church on the first day of the year, why? I really do not know except that in my old age I am a little different....
As sometimes we say on WU 'I wrote a whole book!'. Happy New Year to you and all of your family.

YCDO, hello and glad that you stopped by. Glad that you find something worthwhile to read here, now and then. Happy New Year to you and yours.

Skye, I will try the black eyed peas just because you suggested that I do. If you get a chance, I would love your recipe for the slow cooker. I like okra but in small amounts, I like it fried. I never heard of okra when living in MA, I discovered it when I moved to this area so many years ago. Same about the black eyed peas. Oh I am slow! It just occurred to me where the pop group Black Eyed Peas got its name! Neat.
I came to your blog last night and there was quite a bit going on... You sure have a lot of patience and self control.
Happy New Year to you and yours, and please eat a spoonful of peas for me.

Hello GGd BF, KAT, and all of you who come here but do not have an active blog, Happy New Year to you and yours.

LOVE YOU RAIN AND AQUA!


THANK YOU ALL FOR YOUR FRIENDSHIP AND SUPPORT in a year that has been a bit challenging now and then. Some of the kindnesses were extended to me on the blog and some privately, it is all appreciated.

HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL OF WUNDERGROUND!
Member Since: May 6, 2008 Posts: 186 Comments: 19068
20. masshysteria
3:46 PM GMT on December 31, 2011
Quoting sandiquiz:
Hi Pros .... I shall get kicked out if I dance on the table at my friend's house!! lol

I had to smile at the graphic that Mass posted of the countdown to 2012... it is recording the countdown to GMT - in other words to my midnight!

Have a lazy day Pros, and I wish you a wonderful New Year:-)


Hi Pros and Sandy!

Actually as I'm posting this message, it's 10:46 am EST in the Northeast part of the US or Mass. and in 13 hrs or so, (see countdown clock) it will be midnight or New Years in our region. I was careful to program this countdown clock in Eastern Standard Time not GMT. Nevertheless, whenever your clock does strike 12:00 M, may you and yours have a most HAPPY, HEALTHY & SAFE NEW YEAR!!
Member Since: June 21, 2006 Posts: 75 Comments: 8923
19. sandiquiz
3:34 PM GMT on December 31, 2011
Hi Pros .... I shall get kicked out if I dance on the table at my friend's house!! lol

I had to smile at the graphic that Mass posted of the countdown to 2012... it is recording the countdown to GMT - in other words to my midnight!

Have a lazy day Pros, and I wish you a wonderful New Year:-)
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 318 Comments: 28904
18. Alleyoops
3:21 PM GMT on December 31, 2011
Happy New Year Pictures, Images and Photos

Happy New Year's Eve dear ones....BIG HUGS
Member Since: April 18, 2007 Posts: 190 Comments: 29460
17. masshysteria
3:09 PM GMT on December 31, 2011
Good Morning (((Pros))) ~

Thankfully, I've finally been able to get onto Wunderground again after early morning website glitches kept me off both new and classic formats!

Hope you and yours are well and ready to ring in the NEW YEAR with may better days be ahead for all. It's certainly been an overwhelming challenge, at times, trying to get through 2011. We can only hope that 2012 won't be as daunting.

Thanks for your lovely NEW YEARS graphic and wishes left on my site! It's much appreciated along with your close friendship! Naturally, I also wish nothing but the best for you and others in the days to come! Big hugs!

...........................................

.........................


CLICK ON THE GRAPHIC JUST BELOW OF THE OLE TRADITIONAL NEW YEAR'S TUNE,"FOR AULD LANG SYNE",
BY MAIRI CAMPBELL AND DAVE FRANCIS. (The Youtube embedding was disabled upon request, therefore, the link up). HOPE YOU ENJOY THIS LOVELY SCOTTISH VERSION WHICH HAS MOVED ME SINCE I FIRST HEARD IT A COUPLE YEARS AGO.!


Member Since: June 21, 2006 Posts: 75 Comments: 8923
16. JanesVacation
2:40 PM GMT on December 31, 2011
Hi Pros!
Thanks for stopping by and Happy New Year to you, too!
No resolutions or New Years traditions for me...we just enjoy a glass of the bubbly. Here's toasting to a great 2012!
Member Since: June 21, 2008 Posts: 283 Comments: 1789
15. Ylee
3:31 AM GMT on December 31, 2011
Hi, Pros! My grandma used to bake a ham and have a large meal on New Years' day. Not for good luck or anything, but just because! Come to think of it, we never did(still don't) do anything for good luck! I guess the underlying reason is that to do something "for luck" would indicate a lack of faith in God.

Hope you're having a pleasant evening!
Member Since: February 3, 2011 Posts: 110 Comments: 18988
14. Proserpina
10:28 PM GMT on December 30, 2011

Dance as if no one were watching,
sing as if no one were listening
and live every day as if it were your last.

Anonymous

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Member Since: May 6, 2008 Posts: 186 Comments: 19068
13. itrickpony
6:51 PM GMT on December 30, 2011
It is always worth a visit here!
All the recipes look delicious and for some reason I've been craving ham lately.
I'll be back as my former self: YCD0108 because I am just learning this "Touch screen"
Typing - it is slower than poking around on the keyboard and too easy to leave errors here.
Member Since: December 24, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 1
12. Skyepony (Mod)
3:44 PM GMT on December 30, 2011
Happy New Years Pros!

With a German Dad & Mom from MS we always ate those two good luck meals. Usually one on NYE & the other on News Years Day. I prefer the black eyed peas & make that now for my good luck meal.

I use the crock pot..Black eyed peas, onion, ham hock & my beloved okra.

This year it's been so warm I bought pounds of fresh okra for 99 cent a pound right before Christmas. The sale they have before they go to market for Christmas food.. Blanched, sliced & froze a slew. Some of that is going in the new years pot:)

You've really got to try Black eyed peas. In the south if you don't already have your bag..they might be scarce to find already.
Member Since: August 10, 2005 Posts: 309 Comments: 41424
11. sandiquiz
3:32 PM GMT on December 30, 2011
Pros - thank you for the info on fireworks. I had some inkling that they had been around for thousands of years.

I didn't get to the deer park, it decided to rain, so I gave it a miss. I have many shots from the past, so here is one just for you.... when OtherBug visited the Deer Park!! lol



Enjoy doing your painting... it is a great medicine to do things for "self " occasionally!
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 318 Comments: 28904
10. Proserpina
2:12 PM GMT on December 30, 2011
COTECHINO WITH LENTILS (Cotechino con lenticchie)

Cotechino with Lentils is the most traditional dish for the Cenone, the Italian New Years Eve supper. The lentils represent the money soon to befall all who eat the lentils within an hour of midnight.
Makes 4 servings
Ingredients:

8 ounces dried lentils
2 cloves garlic, peeled
12 fresh sage leaves
one quarter cup extra-virgin olive oil
one quarter cup red wine vinegar
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 large (about 2 pounds) cotechino sausage

1. In a medium saucepan, bring 6 cups of water to a boil, and add 1 tablespoon salt. Add the lentils, garlic, and sage. Cook the lentils at a gentle boil until tender yet still firm, about 20minutes. Drain and place in a medium bowl.
2. Add the olive oil and vinegar to the lentils and season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
3. Prick the sausage several times with a pin. Place in a large pot of cold water and bring to a boil over medium heat/. Reduce the heat to a very low boil, cover the pot and cook for 1 %uFFFD hours. Drain.
4. Spread the marinated lentil on a large serving platter to form abed for the cotechino. Slice the cotechino into %uFFFD -inch thick rounds, arrange over lentils, and serve.

Recipe by Mario Batali - Babbo NYC website

CHIACCHIERE

3 tablespoons melted butter
1/4 cup sugar
3 large eggs, well beaten
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
zest of 1 small lemon
1 to 2 teaspoons milk
Vegetable oil for frying
Powdered sugar for dusting

Vegetable oil for frying
Powdered sugar for dusting

1. In large mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugar.
2. Add eggs and vanilla and mix thoroughly.
3. Add flour, baking powder, salt, and lemon zest and mix well.
4. Place mixture on lightly floured surface and knead for 6 to 8 minutes until the dough is soft, smooth, and elastic. If dough is hard, add 1 to 2 teaspoons of milk.
5. Form dough into ball, place in greased bowl, turn to coat, and then cover with towel and let stand for 10 minutes.
6. Roll out into sheets, 1/8 thick. (I%u2019ve seen other recipes that recommend folding the dough over and doing this a few times, but you can use your judgment.)
7. Cut dough into 3 by 5 inch strips. Put a small slit in the center of each strip and twist slightly.
8. Deep fry strips of dough for 1 to 3 minutes until puffed and golden. Remove from oil and place on paper towels to drain.
9. When cool, sprinkle with powdered sugar.


Member Since: May 6, 2008 Posts: 186 Comments: 19068
9. Proserpina
3:02 PM GMT on December 29, 2011
SANDI, here is a little info on fireworks and the New Year:

"The First Firecrackers

The history of fireworks goes back thousands of years to China during the Han dynasty (~200 B.C.), even long before gunpowder was invented. It is believed that the first "firecrackers" were likely chunks of green bamboo, which someone may have thrown onto a fire when dry fuel ran short. The rods sizzled and blackened, and after a while, unexpectedly exploded. Bamboo grows so fast that pockets of air and sap get trapped inside of the plant's segments. When heated, the air inside of the hollow reeds expands, and eventually bursts through the side with a long bam!

The strange sound, which had never been heard before, frightened people and animals terribly. The Chinese figured that if it scared living creatures so much, it would probably scare away spirits - particularly an evil spirit called Nian, who they believed to eat crops and people. After that, it became customary for them to throw green bamboo onto a fire during the Lunar New Year in order to scare Nian and other spirits far way, thus ensuring happiness and prosperity to their people for the remainder of the year. Soon, the Chinese were using bursting bamboo for other special occasions, such as weddings, coronations, and births. The "bursting bamboo", or pao chuk as the Chinese called it, continued to be used for the next thousand or so years. "

For the continuation of the article (interesting), please go to www.pyrouniverse.com/history.htm
Member Since: May 6, 2008 Posts: 186 Comments: 19068
8. Proserpina
1:56 PM GMT on December 29, 2011
Good morning BF.

Sandi, welcome back to my blog. Thank you for the kind comments.
So glad that you had a good holiday time with friends, neighbors, and family (when you went visiting). I love your indomitable spirit!

I knew that wonderful people like you would add more New Year's customs to this blog, and you did! I am familiar with several variations of the 'First Footing' but I have never known of anyone who actually practiced it! I think that traditions is part of what makes a 'family' and are to be treasured and passed on.
You just gave me the idea to look into fireworks and new year. They are popular round the world this day and age but I bet that the custom goes way back, perhaps to the Chinese. We'll see.
Going to the Deer Park, etc, great idea for photo ops, fresh air, ... Have a wonderful day my friend.

GG, 2011 sure was a big 'surprise' for you and me! I am sure that you are glad that it is over, just as much as I am. On the other hand, for you it was also a year to show your grit, to win a personal fight, to encourage others, to set a good example on how to live with grace and class,... I love you for all of these things and I wish you a HEALTHY and joyous year. You enrich my life, thank you.
Member Since: May 6, 2008 Posts: 186 Comments: 19068
7. Proserpina
1:43 PM GMT on December 29, 2011
Now there are more overweight people in America than average-weight people. So overweight people are now average%u2026 which means, you have met your New Year's resolution. Jay Leno

Photobucket


Drop the last year into the silent limbo of the past. Let it go, for it was imperfect, and thank God that it can go.
Brooks Atkinson
Member Since: May 6, 2008 Posts: 186 Comments: 19068
6. GardenGrrl
12:43 PM GMT on December 29, 2011
Great blog. Did not know that March was the "New Year" for quite a while.

As for the Germans, Poles and Scandinavians eating pickled herring at midnight, bet they don't kiss much around that time ;-)

Hope you have a great last week of 2011 and a better 2012.
Member Since: March 25, 2007 Posts: 282 Comments: 11024
5. sandiquiz
7:29 AM GMT on December 29, 2011
Great to see you back in WU-mode, and a wonderful new blog.

The Asians believe they should eat long noodles on New Year's Day in order to bring a long life. The longer the better!

In the UK many still follow the old Scottish tradition of "First-Footing". The First-Foot in the house traditionally is a dark, handsome male carrying a piece of coal, a tot of whisky, shortbread and a black bun - a rich dark fruitcake encased in pastry. The visitor in return is given a small glass of whisky.

I remember my first MIL insisted we kept this tradition and at 11.58 her tall son was sent outside with the required items, then after midnight he would ring the door bell and be allowed to enter the house, greeting each and everyone by wishing them a "Happy New Year" with a hug or a handshake.

A new tradition is fireworks - and these can be heard all over the country at the stroke of midnight.

I have a free day today - I should have been visiting the elderly relatives, but they are still not 100% so don't want me to go.
So I am going out to drive through the Deer park, and might have a walk around the gardens.
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 318 Comments: 28904
4. Proserpina
3:47 AM GMT on December 29, 2011
Hi BF! I have never tasted black-eyed peas! One of these days I will have to try some. Red meat? That's American! Sounds good to me.

I do not know what 2012 will bring but I can tell you that 2011 was for me and my family a BAD year! Personally it was probably one of the worst years in a long long time. All I have to say to 2011 is 'GO AWAY BEFORE YOU DO MORE HARM!'

I wish you a very happy New Year, full of health, joy, peace, successes, and lots of dancing.
Member Since: May 6, 2008 Posts: 186 Comments: 19068
3. Barefootontherocks
3:37 AM GMT on December 29, 2011
Hi Prose,
Eating black-eyed peas is traditional here. Red? How about some good red meat? Lobster also sounds like a winner. Let's all swim backward and away from 2012.

Happy nearly New Year. Enjoy!

Member Since: April 29, 2006 Posts: 163 Comments: 20741
2. Proserpina
2:55 AM GMT on December 29, 2011

HOPPIN’ JOHN


Ingredients
• 1 tablespoon olive oil
• 1 large ham hock
• 1 cup onion, chopped
• 1/2 cup celery, chopped
• 1/2 cup green pepper, chopped
• 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
• 1 pound black-eyed peas, soaked overnight and rinsed
• 1 quart chicken stock
• Bay leaf
• 1 teaspoon dry thyme leaves
• Salt, black pepper, and cayenne
• 3 tablespoons finely chopped green onion
• 3 cups steamed white rice

Directions

Heat oil in a large soup pot, add the ham hock and sear on all sides for 4 minutes. Add the onion, celery, green pepper, and garlic, cook for 4 minutes. Add the black-eyed peas, stock, bay leaves, thyme, and seasonings. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 40 minutes, or until the peas are creamy and tender, stir occasionally. If the liquid evaporates, add more water or stock. Adjust seasonings, and garnish with green onions. Serve over rice.
Emeril Lagasse
Member Since: May 6, 2008 Posts: 186 Comments: 19068
1. Proserpina
2:53 AM GMT on December 29, 2011
From previous blog:

Hi and welcome back Shore. I have not had time to visit any blogs today but I will come around soon. I really am looking forward to enjoying your little excursion.

I have spent several hours writing up the new blog, and then adding the photos. The research had been done in previous days. I thought that I could get the blog done in no time at all but I was wrong. Now that I have something new up, I can go back to my book. I am reading about Juana, last Spanish queen, also known as Juana la loca. It is a fascinating story.

I have also done a lot of painting the last two days. It feels good to get my hands full of paint!

Take care.
Member Since: May 6, 2008 Posts: 186 Comments: 19068

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