At NOURISH Evolution, we love the power of fad-free, sound nutrition strategies that have stood the test of time and nourished generations of people around the world. And we couldn't help noticing that many foods traditionally eaten for good luck and prosperity in the new year will also get your year off to a healthy start.
Ring in the year with grapes. In Spain and parts of Latin America, revelers gobble 12 grapes at the stroke of midnight to ensure a sweet year ahead. According to Epicurious, this practice was started in the early 20th century by Spanish grape growers to encourage people to consume surplus fruit. Nonetheless, it's a nourishing start–and it would give Lia and me a head start on our resolution to eat more fruit in 2011.
Legumes for prosperity. These swell as they cook and are thought to represent coins–and therefore good fortune in the new year–so they're a classic new year's food from Japan to Europe to the American South. Make a pot of our Southern-style Nourishing Hoppin' John for a down-home celebration or our All-Purpose French Lentils (lentils being traditional in Italy, Germany and Brazil). Split Pea Soup with Spanish Chorizo and Sherry Vinegar is another option.
Greens–show me the money. Could the prosperity connection be any more obvious? Around the globe, people will be gobbling greens tomorrow, from collards in the South to kale in Denmark to sauerkraut in Germany. Try our Quick Collards or our White Bean and Kale Ragout with Turnips and Sausage, which also features lucky legumes.
Progress with pork. Pigs move ever forward as they forage for their food, so they represent progress in cultures all over the world. It's also rich in fat, which signifies wealth. You'll find it in many forms in New Year's dishes–sausage, bacon, roasts. Since pork is so flavorful, we like to enjoy it in smaller portions surrounded by sumptuous veggies. Serve it up in our Super Succulent Five-Spice Pork Shoulder, Carnitas de Lia or Spiced Pork Roast.
Move forward with fish. Like pigs, fish are always moving ahead, and eating fish will help you get ahead in the new year. Cod is traditional in Europe, so try our Pan Seared Harissa-Rubbed White Cod. Or make a batch of our Hot-Smoked Sablefish to add to a Scandinavian-style new year's smorgasbord.
Whatever combination of these foods you choose will begin your year on an auspicious–and nourishing–note. Happy (and Nourishing) New Year!