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'Auld Lang Syne'? For tradition, that song loses to black-eyed peas

December 31, 2008 |  9:43 am

Auld Lang Syne? I'd rather have black-eyed peas 

Why do we sing "Auld Lang Syne" each New Year's Eve?

Maybe it's just me, but remembering all the folks we've left behind seems like a pretty depressing way to start off a New Year. (At least that's my interpretation of the lyrics, but let me know if I am missing the kicky, happy part of this song.)

I know, I know. It's all about tradition. I'd rather embrace this tradition: eating black-eyed peas on New Year's Day. Hoppin' Johns, blackeyed beans -- this dish goes by several different names, and there are seemingly endless ways to serve them up.

Conventional wisdom in the South says you're all but doomed unless you start the New Year with a serving of these, which are said to bring good luck and prosperity.

And who can't use a little of those?

Here are two old-school recipes, and this one is a more modern take. If you have a preferred way of making your Hoppin' Johns, we want to hear about it.

Happy New Year!

--Rene Lynch

Photo credit: Glenn Koenig / Los Angeles Times