Tis' the season to be jolly! Not only are Christmas festivities in full swing, but there is also the hustle and bustle here and there as people prepare to welcome the New Year. People do this in different ways, but one common thing is food. Read on to know what different countries eat to celebrate the new year.
Some of the most shocking happenings have plagued 2020, and yeah, that's basically the coronavirus that kept the entire universe on their toes!
The world is ready to bring the turbulent year to a close and ring in a fresh one that will hopefully be much better.
And what better way to do that than with a delicious platter of food? Here's how different countries eat to ring in the new year.
Americans celebrate the new year with "Hoppin' John," which is significantly most associated with the Southern U. S. on New Year's Day.
"Hoppin' John" is a dish of black-eyed peas, rice, pork, and vegetables and spices. The signature dish is served alongside cornbread and greens, which are thought to represent money as the meal is believed to bring a year blessed with good fortune.
In Denmark, New Year's Eve is celebrated with a towering cake called kransekage. The cake is also eaten in Norwegia, where it is called kransekake.
The Danes enjoy a large spread that typically includes boiled cod, stewed kale, and cured saddle of pork for New Year's Day. However, the country's signature dish for the new year is the traditional Kransekage, which comprises about 18 layers of marzipan rings that may be topped with icing, chocolate, and almonds.
The cake's shape is reminiscent of a cornucopia, or horn of plenty, and promises a future of happiness and financial success. The cake is adorned with toothpick flags and served with champagne at midnight.
Many Spaniards will pop 12 grapes into their mouths at midnight — one with each chime of the clock. Each grape represents a wish for happiness and luck for every month in the coming year. Legend has it that this "12 grapes in 12 seconds" custom stems from grape suppliers in the Alicante region who were bothered by a surplus of crop more than a century ago.
The tradition has trickled into other Latin cultures, too, with a few modifications. In Portugal, they eat 12 raisins; in Peru, they eat a 13th grape for good measure.
Italians welcome the New Year while munching on coin-shaped lentils with cotechino, a pork sausage that symbolizes the land's fat.
With their coinlike shape, the lentils represent luck and prosperity, while the accompanying pork signifies the fat or bounty of the land. Italians mainly chose the pig to evoke the future as pigs root forward, whereas other animals, such as chickens or cows, move backward or standstill.
The Filipinos hold a traditional dinner party called Media Noche. The signature food items you'll find at a media Noche are those shaped like circles, for luck.
They primarily focus on fruits and would have at least 12 different fruits on the table to represent each month. Other traditional meal items include roasted pig, noodles, and caramel-topped rice cake.
In Japan, the New Year's meal comes in an appealing spread of colors and is packaged in unique, lacquered boxes.
The lineup typically includes a soup called ozone, a savory combination of bonito (fish)and kombu (kelp) and flavored with a Japanese lime. The soup is paired with omochi, steamed rice pounded, and shaped into cakes that are grilled. Soba noodles also appear, often at Buddhist temples; their length represents the hope for longevity.
The "osechi ryori," which means the New Year's cuisine, also includes foods symbolic of good harvest, good health, happiness, prosperity, and so on. It is also dominated by red, white, and yellow, the colors that the Japanese believe to be the lucky colors, including red, white, and yellow.