Happy New Year! What are your traditions?

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Aug 1, 2013
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As I cook the southern tradition of black eyed peas and cabbage (separate dishes) with my addition of pork chops and cornbread, I wondered what everyone else cooks on New Year's Day.

So, what are you cooking?
As little as possible. Yesterday, I prepped Bitterballen (how to describe.... they're a meat and cheese croquette, dredged in bread crumbs and deep fried); they're a Dutch bar treat that I like to make on New Years day. I took a couple of tubs of Dutch pea soup (erwtensoep) out of the freezer as well as a smoked Farmer Sausage. As well, because my daughter can't have onions or garlic in this phase of her elimination diet, I'll be making a small pot of turkey vegetable soup (no noodles; I'll throw in some rice instead).

Usually, oliebollen are a New Years tradition around here but this year, I decided not to bother as my daughter is gluten free and we don't need the calories. Plus, they're a lot of standing over a hot stove for a long time. Oliebollen, translated literally as oil balls, are a deep fried fritter stuffed with raisins, currants, and diced apples. They're sprinkled with icing sugar and best served warm. Growing up, I was told that the tradition was to go to your neighbours on New Years Eve and share a plate of oliebollen.

Yummm...both of those sound delicious to me, but sadly, I'm really trying to keep my resolution to get in shape this year, so I have lots of salad and salmon in my future. So please have some for me! In case you don't have a favorite cornbread recipe, I'll offer this one that I've made for years and years. People always as for seconds and then they ask for the recipe, so I guess they like it as much as I do. I've yet to taste one that I liked better. And it's easy. Happy New Year to all!

The Best Cornbread Ever

1 box Jiffy cornbread mix
2 eggs
1/4 C oil
1 C sour cream
1 C creamed corn

diced jalapeno pepper (optional)
some hot pepper sauce (optional)

In a medium sized bowl, beat the eggs lightly with a fork. Add the oil, sour cream and creamed corn and mix with fork til blended. Add diced jalapano and hot sauce, if you like. Mix in Jiffy cornbread mix with a fork just until blended---do NOT over mix. Bake in a greased pie pan. Bake according to directions on the box, til golden brown on top.(400 degrees for 20-25 minutes)
As I cook the southern tradition of black eyed peas and cabbage (separate dishes) with my addition of pork chops and cornbread, I wondered what everyone else cooks on New Year's Day.

So, what are you cooking?

In our neck of the woods (western NC) it was always crowder peas and turnip greens, mostly because my grandfather was a farmer and that was what he liked. But these days any field pea and winter green will do me. Love going to all-afternoon potlucks and just hanging out with friends; usually the folks in my circle of friends like congregating in a house way out in the country. That's what I'll be doing this afternoon.

EDIT: Anyone frying up hog jowls? Now that is a tradition I have not experienced in a while.

I'm in NW PA and Swedish and Irish. We follow Swede traditions for most holidays, but the Irish comes out on New Year's. I grew up with cabbage, potato and ham soup. Which I've never liked. So I usually make scalloped potatoes with what's left of the Christmas ham. I always do a breakfast treat for the kids (and my sweet tooth :)) on holidays. This morning it was cinnamon and sugar donut muffins.
Well, it's not a tradition, but I made vegetarian chili for dinner tonight. I soaked the beans last night, then boiled them today. I had a bit of TVP (textured vegetable protein) in the pantry and used that as well, soaking it with added spices (a special blend I make plus a few extras for spiciness) and sautéed it to a light brownish color. It looks a bit like ground meat when sauteed, but I don't want it to taste like meat even though it is sold as a meat substitute.

For lunch, I used some of the sautéed tvp to make myself a vegetarian taco with olives, avocado, onions, peppers, lettuce, sour cream and cheddar in a soft flour tortilla. I'd usually add fresh tomatoes too, but didn't have any on hand. I love homemade tacos. Usually I fry the tortillas because I like the soft crispy greasiness of a freshly fried tortilla, but today I went au naturel.

When my husband got home, I was still pouring the gradient soap, but dinner was already made so once I finished and cleaned up a bit, we ate the chili. It's pretty good and we each had second helpings.
As I cook the southern tradition of black eyed peas and cabbage (separate dishes) with my addition of pork chops and cornbread, I wondered what everyone else cooks on New Year's Day.

So, what are you cooking?

yep - black eyed peas for sure. Corn bread and cabbage were huge in the house growing up. Yep - Daddy was a Texan! I haven't been able to recover grandma's cornbread recipe - dang it. She used the lodge cast iron corn bread pans to bake it in.

A tradition I started w/DH has been to always have platters available for the count down of sliced smoked sausages and sometimes salmon, crackers, cheeses, pate (which we both forgot this year), pretzels, queen annes, and many crunchy other foods celery, carrots, zucchini,bells, etc., and just keep em flowing. This year I added dried spiced okra - ummm so good. Oh - yeh, I'll be hunting down fried/dried okra recipes soon enough. The dried okra was pretty pricey - even for Winco.

ok - now I want to go foraging for left overs.
I love spicy pickled okra. My Dad used to always get a jar of that for me when he traveled somewhere in Texas. I've actually not looked for it myself. And the dried okra, that I have found and bought a few times. Luckily my husband doesn't like it. More for me.:)
I can't exactly remember there being any special foods we would have on New Years when I was growing up. They seemed to be one of those anything-goes, pot-luck affairs, but in recent years we've been making and eating tamales over at my sis's house ever since one of her best friends gave her (my sis) their family's tamale recipe (they are soooo yummy!)

This year, though, we ended up cancelling our regular New Years plans over at my sis's and stayed home because my sis is recuperating from surgery, and also because our washing machine decided to clunk our on us (the tub bearing gaskets wore themselves out).

Hubby took advantage of his 3-day New Years weekend off of work to fix it himself, courtesy of a wonderful YouTube repair tutorial he found online. He was able to procure the proper parts from Sears and spent the better parts of Sunday and Monday taking the machine apart piece by piece and getting 'er done, and then putting it all back together again.

I assisted when needed and helped clean the parts before he put them all back together (in between my own project of taking my Tower Garden apart to clean it out and put my new extension kit on it). All told, it ended up being a very productive weekend.........our washing machine happily works like new again (it's a 10-year old LG), and we figured we dodged an $800 repair bill at the very least, probably more than that since it was a holiday weekend. And my tower is clean and has 8 new planting slots to fill. WooHoo!

For New Years dinner, we ended up eating pierogis left-over from Christmas Eve......and a peanut butter and Nutella sandwich may also have been eaten somewhere along the way. :mrgreen:

IrishLass :)

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