2018 is on the horizon which, here in Australia, is a big deal for many. But Aussies aren’t the only ones who get excited at the thought of a new year approaching. Many other cultures celebrate their New Year at the same time, and incorporate just as many customs and traditions into their holiday practice.
We often hear people talk about eating certain foods to ring in the new year and bring good luck going forward. In India, this is a tradition that many take part in, and we would like to encourage you to as well!
There are many customary foods to consume on the New Year that you may not have known about. Here are some of the most widely recognised “good luck” foods in Indian cuisine– all of which you can find on the Aagaman menu!
Lentils – The equivalent of black eyed peas in America, lentils are India’s legume-oriented New Year’s tradition. Because they are shaped like coins, they are said to bring financial support.
Dishes on our menu: Dal Makhani, Jhane Ko Dal
Paneer – Cheese curds are considered beneficial in Indian tradition for those who are travelling as well as students or employees facing trials and challenges in their place of study or work.
Dishes on our menu: Kadai Paneer Masala, Palak Paneer, Mater Paneer, Shai Paneer
Ghee – This condiment is essentially clarified butter, and is thought to keep negative energies at bay. Traditionally, ghee was meant to be burnt to experience the benefits, but we think eating it is just as good!
Dishes on our menu: Kesari Chawal, Butter Chicken, Tandoori Roti
Fish – In some cultures, fish is thought to be good luck as it’s silver appearance signifies riches to be received in the new year.
Dishes on our menu: Malekhu Fish Tikka, Chatpati Macchi, Marinara Masala, Goan Fish Curry
Mango – Because it is round and sweet, mango symbolises prosperity and is especially good luck when eaten alongside other succulent, circular ingredients like jaggery and coconut.
Dishes on our menu: Mango Lassi, Mango Pickles, Mango Chicken
Chilli – This spice is also one that eliminates evil spirits, according to many Indian communities.
Dishes on our menu: Ghurkhali Chilli Chicken, Bhindi Masala
If you’re not very superstitious, or are generally wary of mystical claims, then consuming these foods for their properties of luck may not be for you. That being said, they are still great foods to incorporate in the New Year thanks to their health benefits alone!
Lentils, paneer and fish are delicious, lean protein sources. Ghee is a heart-healthy fat. Mango contains heaps of fibre and vitamins, and chilli contains anti-inflammatory properties and is great for metabolism.
If you are craving any of these powerhouse ingredients, they are all available on the Aagaman menu, the best Indian restaurant in Port Melbourne. Whether you come in to try them over the holidays or after, we ensure that you can’t go wrong with any!
Which are your favourite ingredients on this list? Do you have any culinary New Year’s traditions we haven’t included here?