When we were growing up, at some point, our mom started saying, “Rabbit” on the first of the month. It was the first thing she said before she would get out of bed, or utter another sound. “Rabbit.” On New Year’s day, she would say it three times. “Rabbit, rabbit, rabbit.” It was supposed to bring good luck. I don’t know if she ever felt like saying “rabbit” brought her luck or if she just reached a point where she was afraid not to say it so she just kept on going.
She also had sauerkraut on New Year’s. I don’t remember this for my entire childhood but at some point it started to matter. Then it turned into cabbage or something cabbage like, such as brussel sprouts.
My husband’s family also had New Year’s traditions. They ate black eyed peas. In my own home, we now make Black Eyed Pea Fritters each New Years. I won’t say that I make them for good luck. I make them so that my kids can have a holiday tradition to carry forward for their children and grandchildren.
Black Eyed Pea Fritters
Two cans black eyed peas, drained and rinsed
Half an onion chopped
Two cloves garlic, crushed
Eight ounces diced ham
Just less than half a cup flour
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Mush the black eyed peas into a paste. You can use a food processor. I went old school and had my faithful assistant use his (freshly washed) hands.
2. Add the rest of the ingredients and stir until combined.
3. Scoop eight patties onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
4. Bake at 400 for 15 minutes. Flip, drizzle with a little olive oil and bake for another 15 minutes.
I served these with sautéed kale. They were delicious.
I have fried these in the past but I have found that many of the things I fry taste just as good baked and are a little bit healthier.
I hope you’ll give these a try. Happy New Year to one and all. May the new year bring you prosperity, health and happiness.