In honor of Friday the 13th, we show you how to find your true love in an apple peel, shorten a life by cutting noodles, and frustrate fishermen with bananas.
Long Noodles for a Long LifeChina has a rich history of foods and holidays that celebrate luck and tradition. When planning your next Asian-themed dinner party, include a noodle dish on the menu, but serve the noodles uncut. Some Chinese cultures believe the long noodle symbolizes a long life, so cutting the noodles before serving symbolizes cutting life short.
True Love, Found!Next time you bake an apple pie–or feel like finding Prince Charming–peel the fruit until the skin breaks. Toss the skin onto the counter and see what letter forms in the peel. The letter you see in the peel is the first letter of your true love's name. Bonus points if your peel is long enough to spell their entire name.
Santa Ate ItChristmas is fraught with urban legends. Our least favorite is the belief that cakes can only be cut on Christmas Eve, and at least one slice must be saved for Christmas Day. Waiting to cut a cake like Peppermint Ice Cream Cake can be hard, but making yourself stop before eating the last piece can be torturous.
That's BananasIt sounds like a fishy story to us, but for centuries fishermen have vehemently refused to have bananas on their boat. Rumor has it that an illness once befell one fisherman after eating the fruit, or at least that's how he explained his poor catch that day. If you do go fishing with a superstitious angler and must bring a banana, hide it inside an innocent chocolate cake, and don't offer to share.
Peas on EarthLikely crafted by a pea farmer, the tradition of eating black eyed peas on New Year's is as old as dirt, and some might argue just as appealing. Dress your luck-laden veggies with fresh cilantro, ground red pepper, and a dash of sour cream.
Ward Off DraculaWhile it tends to pop up most often at Halloween when ghosts and ghouls run freely among us, the belief that garlic wards off vampires, evil spirits, and unwanted first-date kisses has long been passed from generation to generation. Fortunately, garlic has tons of good qualities, too. It helps prevent the flu, clears congestion, and adds great flavor to lots of easy dishes, like this hearty potato soup.
You May Now Pelt the Bride and GroomTo celebrate their life-long vows, many couples hand out tiny bundles of uncooked rice for well-wishers to toss in their direction as they leave. The act is meant to symbolize the hope of good health and prosperity. Now that the price of rice is rising, consider throwing rose petals or blowing bubbles at the duo and save your rice for a tasty side dish.
Bad Luck Befalls SpillersMind your shakers! Spilling salt is the only acceptable cause for throwing food in most homes in America. The unlucky slip can only be remedied by throwing a handful of salt over the left shoulder. Skip the risk and keep your shakers in the kitchen to make this tasty potato dish.
Burning Friendship BridgesWhen working in the kitchen with friends, never pass hot peppers to anyone. Instead, place them on the table and allow your cooking buddy to pick them up. Supposedly this will keep disagreements from coming between you, though you do risk annoying your sous chef when you avoid passing directly.