Start the year off right with a brunch that brings good luck. Knowing a few New Year's Day traditions and superstitions will help you plan the perfect meal.
Step 1: Create a centerpiece Fill vases with flowers believed to bring good luck -- magnolias, irises, peonies, lotuses, chrysanthemums, and plum blossoms.
Step 2: Offer pomegranate cocktails Start with a cocktail that contains pomegranate juice. Pomegranates are part of many New Year's Day menus in Mediterranean countries because they represent abundance.
Step 3: Serve lucky foods Include at least one of these foods at your New Year's Day brunch: Cabbage, which represent money; lentils, which symbolize coins; pork, because pigs represent progress and a rich life; and long noodles, which signify a long life.
TIP: Avoid serving lobster and chicken; they represent setbacks and regrets.
Step 4: Serve a Bundt cake Serve a Bundt cake -- or any ring-shaped sweet -- for dessert; it ensures closure for the old year. Some cultures hide a small trinket or coin in the cake they serve at New Year's Day brunch; the person who finds it is destined for an especially fortunate year.
Step 5: Don't clean your plate Leave a morsel or two on your plate; it guarantees that your pantry will always be stocked in the coming year.
FACT: If the first person to cross your threshold in the New Year is a tall, dark, handsome man, you're going to have a good year, according to the Scottish superstition known as the "first footer."