A mix of traditions and a toast for a new year that will hopefully be blessed with more good food, exciting travels and new adventures! This was our very simple new year's eve dinner. We had a comforting and spicy soup with black-eyed peas and thin sausage slices garnished with green onions, which is popularly known as Hoppin' John. I like having this with steamed white rice. I learned that it's usually eaten on New Year's day for good luck. To go with the soup, I also made some crispy springrolls. Fresh roll (called "pan de sal" in the Philippines) filled with pan-fried ham slices and edam cheese, was always my favorite New Year snack in the Philippines. My mother would always buy Chinese ham from a busy food store in downtown Manila. The cheese was usually aged gouda imported from Holland which has been a part of the Christmas season there for many years. A good sign that the holiday season has began is when groceries and markets start selling Chinese ham and round gouda cheese (dipped in red wax). Having this sandwich for New Year's eve will always remind me of Christmas in the Philippines. Fresh round fruits that the Filipinos believe to be for good luck is a favorite centerpiece for the table. Some like to have as many as thirteen different kinds of round fruits but for me, the number is not as important as the meaning it conveys. As for my husband and me, our New Year's eve wouldn't be complete without our traditional toast.