Eat Some Lucky Foods for a Prosperous New Year

BlogHer Original Post

Foods Shaped Like Coins

Hopping John
Image: Hopping John from Tavallai via Flickr

In many places, foods shaped like coins are thought to bring prosperity in the new year. If you're in North America, especially the southern U.S. states, black-eyed peas are a tradition for New Year's Day, possibly dating from the Civil War, when most crops were burned and people survived on this type of field pea, also called cow peas. In the South, black-eyed peas are most often served in a traditional dish called Hopping John, usually containing ham, rice and collard greens and paired with macaroni and cheese. A few years ago on BlogHer I shared more ideas for cooking black-eyed peas if you'd like to get the black-eyed peas luck in a less traditional dish. Many African Americans make a type of coin-shaped cookie called benne wafers for good luck in the new year, or as part of the celebration of Kwanzaa. In Italy people often eat lentils and sausages just after midnight on New Year's Eve, and lentil dishes also symbolize good luck for New Year's in Germany and Brazil. In some Eastern European countries, the lentils are combined with sauerkraut, and the long strands of sauerkraut symbolize long life. In Turkey, pomegranates symbolize good luck for the coming year because of the red color and the shape of the seeds, which represent money and prosperity.


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