Tuesday, January 1, 2008

New Year's Day

And time to cook the traditional collards, black-eyed peas, and smoked hog jowl -- another of my Alabama-bred grandmother's traditions. The collards, simmered in chicken broth with onion, hot pepper, and slices of the smoked pork, are eaten "to put green money in your pocket" in the coming year. The fatty hog jowl is for good fortune, probably coming from a time when any sort of meat was scarce and fat was a source of energy, not a scary taboo.

The black-eyed peas, also cooked with the hog jowl, bring good luck. Some folks say you need to eat 365 peas (366 on Leap Years), to ensure luck each and every day. We make ours into Hoppin' John , a savory mixture of rice and onions and peas, whose name may derive from a creole dish made with pigeon peas -- thus au pigeon.

May your New Year be full of good things, whatever tradition you follow!
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Jon MichaelRiley said...

Happy New Year Vicki! As always, I enjoy both your photographic/visual talent as well as your writing. Then there's the advice and just-good-sense stuff about writing.
The winter snow tree image is awonderful, as is the open shed door with air-dried sheets taking in the sun.
Best Wishes for 2010!
Jon Michael Riley

Vicki Lane said...

Thanks, John! Praise from a real photographer warms my heart!

I wonder how your comment about today's post get over here on last year's post?

Vicki Lane said...

Jon! I meant JON!