I grew up with my mother’s German tradition of eating pork roast and sauerkraut on New Year’s Day. My mom always told me you have to eat some sort of cabbage on NY Day to bring good fortune in the coming year. I never thought much about it, but I did continue that tradition in my own home. This year is no different, we will enjoy a ham from our friends George and Anne House, and some Eatwell Red Cabbage for our New Year’s gathering. But today, as I was thinking about what to write for this week’s newsletter I began to wonder where this tradition came from, so I googled it.
This is what I found on the “German Food Guide”:
Eating Sauerkraut on New Year's Eve is a long-standing tradition in Germany. It is believed that eating Sauerkraut will bring blessings and wealth for the new year. Before the meal, those seated at the table wish each other as much goodness and money as the number of shreds of cabbage in the pot of Sauerkraut.
I also read that the long shreds of cabbage are meant to represent a long life. And for the pork, well a pig cannot look backwards, only forwards, and therefore only roots forward. This is meant to represent looking to the future rather than dwelling on the past. And the pig/pork roast is also a symbol of good luck for the coming year.
As Cameron and I walked around the farm today, for the last time this year, I couldn’t help but smile when I saw this gorgeous purple row of cabbage and look forward to our delicious New Year’s Day meal. Happy New Year Y’all!