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Decoding the media noche table

Decoding the media noche table


Have 12 round fruits ready. Prepare 12 round fruits at New Year’s Eve. Each round fruit stands for the coming months of the year approaching. Gather them in a fruit basket or platter, and put them on your dining table. This way, you ensure that all the months will be fruitful. Round fruits also signify nature’s bounty and continuity, so eating 12 of them means abundance and prosperity the whole year round.

Some common fruits in the New Year’s lineup include apples, grapes, oranges, and persimmons
Palabok is a popular choice for Filipino dinner tables

Serve something long for dinner. Consider having long noodles for your New Year feast. Pasta noodles like spaghetti, fettuccine, and linguine or any kind of any kind of pansit topped with eggs are common to Filipino dining during the traditional Media Noche. According to the elders’ beliefs, the length of the noodles are symbolic of long life while the eggs signify a new life for the family. 

A holiday staple, the fruit salad is a sweet way to end the meal

Finish it sweet. Media Noche should have a sweet ending. Serve desserts. Most Pinoy families go for the popular fresh fruit salad. Others bake cakes, leche flan or buy ice cream. Some prefer to have a native delicacy made from sticky rice like biko, suman or sapin-sapin. Sweet and sticky food makes a closely-knit and a sweeter bond within each member of the family. Also, sticky food denotes that good fortune will remain all throughout the coming year.

This story was originally published in Northern Living, December 2014.

PHOTOGRAPHY SAM LIM © 2020. Hinge Inquirer Publications, Inc.


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