Set the table for a down-home New Year's Eve party. Give your family and friends the best of wishes with these Southern good luck foods for the New Year.
The Deep South of the United States is filled with good people, good times, and good food. Along with this goodness is an air of superstition and food symbolism. And, the New Year is no exception. On New Year's Eve, Southerners have three favorite dishes that are more than just good luck charms. These foods are plentiful and inexpensive.
Here are the three foods you'll find on a Southern table for New Year's Eve dinner. Serve these dishes to your party guests in the hope that y'all will gain wealth, health, and happiness in the coming year.
Serve black-eyed peas to grow your wealth
It is believed that eating black-eyed peas will help expand wealth because the peas swell up and expand when cooked. Also, black-eyed peas can endure the rough spots. These peas grow in the harsh southern summer sun when many other plants wither and die.
Black-eyed peas are served often at our house. It's easy to cook black-eyed peas and there are so many ways to prepare these staple foods. We make a simple black-eyed pea and vegetable soup with onions, carrots, and collard greens.
Patrick and Gina Neeley, from Down Home with the Neeleys on the Food Network, have an awesome recipe for Black-Eyed Peas with Bacon and Pork. Their recipe calls for chicken stock. If you are looking for a low-sodium and vegetarian soup stock, save your vegetable scraps and make your own homemade vegetable soup stock instead.
Add a side of collards to have hope for better things to come
This West Coast girl had never heard of collards until moving to the South. The bitter taste and tough texture weren't to my liking. Then we started growing collards in our garden and picking the young leaves for our dinners. The flavor is much milder and the leaves are much easier to eat.
Another popular Southern cook, Paula Deen, has a simple dish for a Quick Collard Green Saute that is delicious. If you don't like collard greens, you can substitute any of the cooking greens such as spinach, mustard greens, bok choy, or Chinese cabbage.
Clean your plate with cornbread to keep your good fortune
|Leqenik by Violetamyftari. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons|
Add a touch of golden happiness to your New Year's meal with this Buttery Corn Bread Recipe from Taste of Home. This is a simple recipe that just takes a few minutes to mix together and 30 minutes to bake.
Sit back and enjoy your holiday get-together
After dinner, sit back and enjoy the Southern hospitality. Spend quality time with your family and friends. Share some laughter. Sing some happy songs. And, have hope in a prosperous new year.
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