Good Luck for the New Year

— Written By and last updated by

The New Year offers us an opportunity to make a clean start on developing new life habits and leave the ones behind us. Be sure to start your new year with an extra boost of good fortune by enjoying a meal sure to promise good fortune. The traditional foods in the South relating to good fortune are beans, greens and pork.

Greens, any greens, including cabbage, collards, kale, and chard, — their green leaves look like folded money, and are thus symbolic of economic fortune.

Beans, any legumes including beans, peas, and lentils are also symbolic of money. Their small, seed like appearance resembles coins that swell when cooked so they are consumed with financial rewards in mind.

Pork, the custom of eating pork on New Year’s is based on the idea that pigs symbolize progress. The animal pushes forward, rooting itself in the ground before moving.

Be sure to ring in the New Year with much bounty and progress by munching on these easy recipes, which contain the ingredients to get you on the right track!

Black-Eyed Peas with Garlic and Kale Recipe


  • 1½ pounds kale, washed and drained
  • 1 tablespoon olive or other vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh garlic, or more to taste
  • Pinch of dried red pepper
  • 2 cups canned or cooked black-eyed peas
  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar, or to taste


  1. Pull the kale leaves from the tough stems. Discard the stems and chop the leaves into one-inch pieces. Place about two inches of water in a large pot and heat to boiling. Add the kale, cover and cook until tender, stirring occasionally, 15 to 20 minutes.
  2. Drain. Reserve the water for soup, if desired. In a large non-stick skillet, combine the oil and garlic. Cook the garlic over low heat, stirring, until it begins to sizzle, about two minutes. Add the peas and red pepper and cook until blended, stirring, about three minutes. Add the kale and stir to blend over low heat. Add the cider vinegar just before serving. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Serves 6.

Hot Turnip Green Dip Recipe


  • ½ cup finely chopped onion
  • ½ cup finely chopped celery
  • 2 tablespoon butter
  • 1 3-ounce can mushrooms, drained
  • 1 10-ounce package frozen chopped turnip greens
  • ¼ teaspoon grated lemon rind
  • 1 can cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 6-ounce roll garlic cheese
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 5 drops hot pepper sauce


  1. Sauté the onion and celery in butter until tender. Stir in mushrooms and set aside. Cook turnip greens according to package directions and drain well. Combine them with the lemon rind in the bowl of a food processor and process until smooth.
  2. In the top of a double boiler, combine sautéed vegetables, pureed turnip greens, soup, cheese Worcestershire and hot pepper sauce, stirring until mixture is well blended and heated. Serve hot with corn chips.

Italian Sausages with Roasted Veggies


  • 1 pound potatoes washed and cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 1 green bell pepper, cored, seeded and cut into 1 to 1½-inch chunks
  • 1 red bell pepper, cored, seeded and cut into 1 to 1½-inch chunks
  • 1 large purple onion, sliced lengthwise or cut in 1 to 1½-inch chunks
  • 1 medium zucchini, sliced thick
  • 1 medium yellow squash, sliced thick
  • 4 ounces mixed mushrooms
  • 4 ounces baby bella mushrooms
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons Italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 1 pound Italian sausages (I use the turkey ones)


  1. Preheat oven to 450°F.
  2. Spread the potatoes, onion and peppers in single layer in one or more large roasting pans; do not crowd them or they won’t brown. Drizzle with the olive oil, Italian seasoning and granulated garlic. Add salt and pepper to taste. Roast veggies, turning once or twice, for about 30 minutes.
  3. Add the squash and mushrooms, mix in well. Pierce each sausage in two or three places with a fork. Place the sausages on top of the veggies. Bake for 30 minutes or until the sausages and veggies are cooked through. Turn sausages halfway through baking time. Serve hot.

Baked Black-Eyed Peas


  • 4 slice thick-sliced bacon
  • 2 celery stalks
  • 1 jumbo onion
  • 1 red pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 package dry black-eyed peas
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 can chicken broth
  • 1⅓ cups ketchup
  • ⅔ cup molasses
  • ½ cup cider vinegar
  • ¼ cup light brown sugar
  • ¼ cup bourbon
  • 1 tablespoon dry mustard
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce


  1. In 12-inch skillet, cook bacon over medium-low heat 10 to 12 minutes or until browned, stirring frequently. With slotted spoon, transfer bacon to paper towels to drain. Spoon out 3 tablespoons bacon fat from skillet into cup; reserve. Discard any remaining fat in skillet.
  2. Return reserved bacon fat to skillet; heat over medium-high heat until hot. Add celery, onion, and pepper, and cook 15 to 20 minutes or until vegetables are lightly browned, stirring occasionally. Add garlic; cook 1 minute, stirring.
  3. Meanwhile, rinse black-eyed peas with cold running water and discard any stones or shriveled peas. In 6-quart Dutch oven, place peas, bay leaf, broth, and 7 cups water; heat to boiling over high heat. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 30 to 40 minutes or until peas are almost tender. Drain peas, discarding liquid.
  4. In small bowl, stir ketchup, molasses, vinegar, sugar, bourbon, mustard, Worcestershire, and salt until blended. Return peas to Dutch oven; stir in bacon, vegetables, and ketchup mixture until combined.
  5. Preheat oven to 350°F. Transfer pea mixture to deep 4-quart casserole; cover and bake 40 minutes or until hot and bubbly. (If not baking right away, cover and refrigerate up to 48 hours. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350°F. and bake peas, covered, 1 hour or until hot and bubbly.)

Serves 20.

Black-Eyed Pea Jambalaya


  • 6 slices of bacon
  • 1 cup of chopped onion
  • ½ cup chopped green bell pepper
  • ¼ cup of chopped celery
  • 1 teaspoon of minced garlic
  • 1½ cups of diced ham
  • ½ pound of Andouille or other smoked sausage, sliced
  • 3 cups of chicken broth or stock
  • 2 cans black-eyed peas, undrained
  • 2 cups of uncooked, long grain rice
  • ¼ cup of chopped, sliced pickled jalapeno
  • ¼ cup of sliced green onion
  • 2 pinches of kosher salt, or to taste
  • 10 turns of the pepper grinder, or to taste
  • ¼ to ½ teaspoon of Cajun seasoning
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Hot sauce, for the table


  1. Using kitchen shears, cut the bacon into the bottom of a cast iron Dutch oven and sauté until slightly browned. Add the onion, green bell pepper and celery; sauté for about 5 minutes until soft. Add the garlic and cook another minute. Add the ham and sausage and cook another 3 minutes. Add the broth and black-eyed peas; bring to a boil.
  2. Stir in the rice, jalapenos and green onion. Season with salt, pepper, and Cajun seasoning. Add the bay leaf and return to a boil, cover, reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to sit covered for another 10 minutes before serving. Fluff with a fork.
  3. Serve with Chow Chow and pass hot sauce at the table, if desired.

Red Beans and Rice Jambalaya: Substitute two cans of light kidney beans, drained and rinsed, for the black-eyed peas.

Serves 6-8.