15 comments on “A New Year’s Tradition

  1. I had never heard of eating black-eyed peas on New Years until this year and I have seen it on several of my blogs. Come to think of it I don’t think I have ever eaten black-eyed peas. That shall be my New Year’s resolution…..find and eat some black-eyed peas.

  2. No fried cabbage or hog jowl? What’s up with that?
    I did cook beps in the crock pot. Thanks for the heads up on why we eat them.

  3. Not only have I never seen a black-eyed pea I’m not even sure what one is! (Though one might guess) Whether that’s a blessing, curse or none of the above remains open to question.

  4. All these traditions and ways of doing things is fascinating. In my life travels I have seen so many different traditions in various cultures, all of it has to do with luck, good fortune, money, health and long life. I suppose this is what humans in general prize the most. The black eye pea tradition that is a new one for me. It is unknown here in Canada despite our so called multiculturalism. In Italy the Xmas tree was virtually unknown until about 25 years ago except for the Northern parts near Austria.
    Even today in Rome there is little in terms of Xmas decorations or music. Lots of coloured lights instead and fireworks. But in Italy everywhere at New Year’s Eve you must eat beans and ham, for good luck, fortune, money and health. It’s on every menu of every restaurant and house.
    As for the decoration bit, I get tired of them by 3 Jan. but I do remember that as a child the third big holiday was Epiphany 6 Jan. with a special cake with the famous bean inside. That tradition still exist in many countries like Mexico , they had the most wonderful cakes and Italy with the Befana, the old ladies who brings gifts to children and cakes with a coin inside. But here it seems to have faded into memory.

  5. When we were all living together, Shannon, Mom, and I, there was a disagreement about when to take the Christmas decorations down, as well. Mom & I had always gone with leaving up till Epiphany and Shannon, of course, down by New Years. We compromised and got to keep the Epiphany, but I always had to eat at least a helping of black eyed peas. As an adult, I haven’t touched them since Shannon was alive. I might try the bean in bag approach if they taste better than the canned.

  6. For us, the gradual “de-greening” depends on whether or not we used any live greenery! The non-allergenic silk stuff stays up until well after Epiphany, because we always tip our ritualistic hats in the direction of the Old Calendar too. Our anniversary is on Feb. 2, so sometimes we leave at least part of the decoration up until then.

    Our collective New Year’s Eve meal traditions include: black eyed peas with hot sauce, served with country ribs, sauerkraut, assorted vegetables and greens cooked with some of the pot liquor, pumpernickel bread, fancy salad, Trappist fruitcake, lemon curd cookies, and champagne at midnight.

  7. I know my mother and a platoon of my maternal ancestors are rotating as I type. Yes, I detest BEPs and I have refused to eat them since mom died and isn’t here to shame me into eating at least one pea on New Year’s day.

    If you must eat them, the more pork products in the pot the better…..bacon,hog jowl or side meat especially. And pepper sauce.
    I’ll stick to the collards with cornmeal dumplings.

    Growing up I learned from our neighbor that BEPs are traditionally served for Rosh Hashanah too by many Southern Jews. I learned that one year when shabbos dinner(which I often attended at their house)coincided with Rosh Hashanah. 2 New Years that year and 2 times with the BEPs!
    There was just NO WINNING that year! lol

  8. No hard and fast traditions in our house. We used to always have oyster stew on New Year’s Eve. Here in Spain, Christmas celebrations come to a climax on Epiphany (Dia de los Reyes, the Day of the Kings). That’s the traditional eve/day for exchanging gifts, too. Gifts don’t come from Santa, they come from The Kings! As for black-eyed peas… I was raised a Yankee.

  9. Had our dose of black-eyed peas Tuesday: Ready for the New Year! Some people I suppose do actually consider black-eyed peas a ‘dose’, but ‘Southern stigma’ aside, they’re really just a standard-issue legume. Done-up in a salsa recipe (known as ‘redneck caviar’) they’re trés tasty. Happy New Year!

  10. My grandmother would have had pork roast and sauerkraut she was Pennsylvania Dutch. We had shrimp salad and pizza. I like to start the new year with my favorite foods. As for the tree, it came down New Years Day, while we were watching the rose parade.

  11. You were also raised as a Baptist? Same here. :) Sort of spiritual now though after a Pentecostal preacher scared the daylights out of me when I was 12 years old. Here at Casa Tipton-Kelly we don’t have any holiday traditions other than keeping things very low key. Electric candles in the window and a few colored lights outside, down by New Year’s Day. So I guess we’re following that superstition without even realizing it. Bill loves black-eyed peas! Ironically, a meal of black-eyed peas, ham bone and greens was probably the most nutritious meal the Southerners could have.

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