Happy New Year’s

New Year's Dinner

The first day of 2011 is different for me this year.  With the passing of my grandmother, there is no phone call from her or second-hand reminder from my mom to make black-eyed peas & put some money up in a high place.  In my family, both are actions meant to guarantee a lucky start to the new year.

Even if someone forgot to make the peas, neither my mom nor my grandma would forget to put a dollar bill or two on a high shelf.  Neither would forget to mention every year that you were supposed to do both these things, even if they themselves hadn’t.  It was kind of a funny little family tradition in its own way.

So, with that in mind a few days ago, I planned on making black-eyed peas for my husband & myself.  I knew that Mark Bittman had a recipe in his How to Cook Everything that was easy enough even for me (the Panicked Chef) to cook.  Unfortunately, once we got all the ingredients, I had to turn the cooking reins over to my husband.  (I’m coming down with some sort of hacking-congestion-sinus miserableness.  Would you like some phlegm with that?)

So, with peas made & money put on the highest shelf of my bookcase, I feel set to face the new year & would like to carry on my family tradition by saying I hope you do the same or, at least, indulge in your own New Year’s Day rituals.  To friends & readers near & far, I wish you love, joy & fulfillment in 2011.


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