Everybody knows that New Year’s Day is meant for presents,  hot drinks and of course, food! Families, friends, couples will get together, have a great time and eat an excellent New Year’s meal!  However, the meal will vary from one country to another. Since each country has its own traditional meal for New Year. If you would like to shake things up a little, this article is what you are looking for!


1. Spanish New Year’s tradition: 12 grapes

Spanish New Year's tradition: 12 grapes

New Year’s Eve in Spain starts during dinner. The typical menu depends on the city, it is mostly composed of seafood, fish, meat, and of course, a dessert: typical Christmas sweets. But there is one important thing, one tradition, that Spanish people kept for years. This tradition says that, if you want to start a New Year with good luck you need to eat 12 grapes for the 12  bells at midnight! Each of these grapes represents each month of the year and have to be eaten, one by one from the countdown to midnight.


2. Italian lentils

Italian lentils

In Italy, you can find lentils on almost every table during New Year’s Eve. Lentils with their coin-like shape are bringing prosperity in the new year, as it is believed. Italians often cook lentils with garlic, onions, herbs, tomatoes, and olive oil. They are commonly served with either ‘cotechino’, an Italian pork sausage, or ‘zampone’, a stuffed pig’s trotte.


3. German Berliner

German Berliner

What about Germany? Germans like to eat doughnuts known as Berliners around midnight on New Year’s Eve. A Berliner is a doughnut that is topped with powdered sugar and filled with fruit jam. Sometimes  Germans can fill the doughnut with something different, for example, mustard, and offer it to their guest as a joke. So be careful! 


4. Japanese New Year’s meal: Soba noodles

Japanese New Year's meal: Soba noodles

On New Year’s Eve at midnight, the Japanese eat toshikoshi soba! Toshikoshi soba is buckwheat noodles in a soup with different toppings. The choice is various. The noodles can be simply served with some green onions, but also with things such as nori, egg, spinach or tempura. These noodles symbolise long life. People aren’t supposed to cut their noodles, but instead, slurp them down as a whole.


5. French King cake

French King cake

This tradition is not happening on New Year’s Eve, but right after. This golden cake, filled with frangipane appears in each boulangerie and patisserie already at the end of December. King cake or ‘la galette des rois’, is a traditional cake that all families eat on the first Sunday after New Year’s Day. The one who will find a little figurine, that is hidden inside of the cake, will be called a king!


Here we are our five meal selections, but it really depends on your food taste! We gave you some interesting choices of how you can diversify your traditional meal. 

What is your traditional New Year’s meal? 

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