Pledging to kick bad habits, start good ones, or generally working to be a better you, aka “new year’s resolutions,” are a popular tradition as the calendar flips to a new year. But that’s not the only ritual practiced for new year’s success. Around the world, a variety of foods are consumed on New Year’s Eve & Day with hopes of ensuring a year filled with luck, abundance, growth, progress, and prosperity.
Lentils represent financial prosperity for the year, which is why Southerners traditionally eat black-eyed peas on New Year’s.
Pork symbolizes growth and progress in the coming year.
Fruit can be lucky, too. In Spain and Mexico, people eat 12 grapes when the clock strikes midnight to bring in luck for each month of the year. In Greece, pomegranate seeds symbolize fertility, life, and abundance. Filipinos celebrate New Year’s Eve with round fruits like mangos in hopes of financial prosperity as the shape resembles that of silver and gold coins.
Green vegetables like cabbage, spinach, broccoli, mustard greens are said to represent money. Danish eat kale with cinnamon and sugar. Many Americans celebrate New Year’s Eve with cooked collards with pork.
Fish symbolizes abundance. Since fish swim forward and fish scales symbolize silver, it is considered a lucky New Year food. The Japanese devour fish for prosperity and shrimp for long life. In some countries, the entire fish is served to symbolize the end of one year and the beginning of another.
Grains like rice, risotto, oats, barley, and quinoa represent abundance since they swell when cooked. In Indian mythology, rice is used in most religious ceremonies as it is believed to soak up negativity and bad omens. People in Sweden and Finland devour rice pudding as a lucky dessert. Many Latin countries savor rice and beans for the New Year.
Noodles are a symbolism of longevity due to their long shape. Japanese and Chinese devour long noodles on New Year’s Eve. As a custom, people slurp on long noodles without cutting or breaking them to bring in lots of luck, happiness, and long life in the coming year.
Your Food Town has all your New Year’s lucky foods for less. Shop our huge Produce Departments (fresh deliveries made to our stores daily) for your fruits and green vegetables. Quality meats with plentiful pork selections plus loads of legumes and grains galore! Visit any of our 30 area locations today. Happy New Year!
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