It’s unlike us not to have plans, but that’s where we found ourselves on New Year’s Eve. We talked about maybe having dinner at the pizza place we like so much in our neighborhood. But we also liked the idea of staying home, being cozy, and cooking something. I had no idea which direction we were headed until Sean texted mid-afternoon asking me to pick up a few items at the store on my way home from work. A cozy New Year’s!
I had read on Martha Stewart about lucky New Year’s foods. I shared a few of the highlights with Sean and he helped us incorporate them into our night. We had braised pork belly for dinner because pork, as a rich piece of meat, symbolizes a rich new year (and I took that to be rich in fortune and experiences). He also made one of his best dishes, creamy baked grits with sun dried tomatoes as a side. (The link is to a recipe that calls for soft goat cheese, but we usually use aged goat cheese and it’s delicious.)
We also ate 12 grapes after the ball dropped, a Spanish tradition. Per Martha, each sour grape represented a sour month and each sweet grape a sweet month in the new year. We’re both destined for a majority of sweet months, but four sour for me and three sour for Sean. Although that doesn’t really matter because according to my colleague, we did it all wrong.My colleague lived in Spain until she was about nine. In Spain you eat one grape per second as you count down to 12! That’s a ton of grapes! She told me it was hard and I didn’t for a second doubt it. We laughed about how Sean and I did it wrong and laughed even harder when she told me she showed up at a bar with her ziploc baggie of grapes! How funny would that have been to witness? I don’t think we’ll be eating one grape per second next year, but it’s fun to experiment with lucky foods and traditions for the new year. Martha also said that round foods symbolize the year coming full circle. She recommended doughnuts. I kind of like the sound of that for next year.
As I’ve already started to hint in my posts, welcome 2014! We’re happy you’re here.