Friday, December 23, 2011

Buon Natale, Joyeux Noël, メリークリスマス

Happy Eve of Christmas Eve!!  Is that a real holiday?  I’m not sure, but that’s still not an excuse to skip the celebration!  I sent my brother an invitation for a holiday bake off with homemade hot chocolate (I use soy milk in mine because it’s vegetarian.  Try it!  I swear it’s delicious.  Just don’t tell Brother what he’s drinking…).  We will enjoy our festive night talking like silly little kids, making a mess, and enjoying the famous Hans in the background.  If we get extra lucky, maybe Biff will even join us.  Then we’ll get to be even louder and make a bigger mess.  I love the Eve of Christmas Eve!!

The Feast of Seven Fishes

It’s no secret that I am of full Italian descent.  I grew up celebrating holidays as a typical Italian-American.  As a child I always thought these traditions were just the way things were done.  I had no idea that it was because of my ethnicity.  Growing up, my best friends and family friends were all Italian-American.  I knew nothing else.  It wasn’t until I was introduced to a new best friend in High School who was Jewish that I learned that people celebrate things differently.  Then when I started dating a Greek, my mind was really blown!  Sheltered much?  Hahaha

In my family, Christmas Eve is a bigger deal than December 25.  When my brother was given the option of working Christmas day or Christmas eve, he made his decision without hesitiation.  He chose to work on Christmas day.  Every year, on December 24, my family gathers together in different homes to indulge in The Feast of Seven FishesThis vegetarian eats fish, so this holiday is cleary at the top of my list.  Yum!!  Throughout the course of the night, everyone must eat seven different types of fishes.  I’m not sure why we eat seven or what will happen if we don’t eat all seven, but I’m not going to be the rebel that finds out!

We start off the feast with a typical antipasto and gabanadina.  Then comes out the fried calamari (1), baked clams (2), and the crab cakes (3).  After a short break, the feast continues with a hefty serving of linguine and clam sauce (4)I know that I already said BAKED clams, but hey, it’s cooked differently so it deff counts as #4!!  Don’t hate…  This is when the women come and gather all the pasta dishes.  After a quick clean up and heat up, out comes the flounder (5), stuffed tilapia (6), and shrimp scampi (7).  The meal is also separated by other fillers such as vegetables and a hearty salad!  My moms side of the family likes to add the traditional bacala.  That’s salted cod fish.  It’s disgusting.  Luckily I spend Christmas eve on my father’s side! 

The feast doesn’t end there.  We are then filled to breaking point with wine, fruits, cookies, cakes, chocolates, canolis, and even roasted chestnuts.  It’s amazing how I stay 98 pounds with all that food!!
 

What are your holiday traditions?

I want to wish you all a very Happy Holiday filled with plenty of family time and a lot of laughter.
<3
-LMF

14 comments:

  1. Although I am not of Italian decent, our family gathering is on Christmas Eve, too. We have an early dinner, usually of ham. Enjoy your Holiday weekend.

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  2. God, after all that food I'd explode. That be more food then I eat in a month, no joke..haha

    Maybe you should also come up with your own word for a vegetarian fish eater, those full on vegans might shun you..haha

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  3. Christmas is always about good food and spending time with family. And although we have different traditions, it all boils down to those two. Have a wonderful Christmas weekend with your family, LMF!

    Cheers,

    Wi
    A Single Girl's Musings

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  4. Hahah my grandma used to do that. Now, my mom tones it down with shrimp and linguini and clam sauce, usually.

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  5. omg so much food! but totally worth it on a holiday!:) xx

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  6. How fun! My grandma came to the U.S. from Italy. My mom tries to keep some her Italian traditions alive, but they're slowly fading. So sad--I wish they wouldn't. I love those traditions so much. I might just have to keep them alive for my own family ;)

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  7. i guess you know what's happening here right now.. i'm trying my best not to eat too much but you know italians :)
    buon natale cara!!!! tanti baci. xoxo, Haus of Gala

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  8. Christmas Eve is pretty quiet in my house these days. Unfortunatley my mum lives in Jamaica and my dad died a few years ago, so it's just me and my youngest daughter. She's busy doing her own thing and I usually start preparing the food for Christmas day. It's a lovely time anyway, because the family meet up over the Christmas period.
    Merry Christmas :-)

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  9. Oh geezus, that all sounds so great! Have a fun feast and merry Christmas Eve!

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  10. merry christmas, pisan:) i also celebrate christmas eve and christmas day ain't much. that's how i was raised as a first-generation italian american. my mom is from tuscany. my dad's parents are from bari. when my extended family used to get together and my dad and uncles were around, we had calamari, clams, oysters, and it was a celebration. just a little lemon and salt on the clams and oysters, that's it. now, much of the old guard has passed away, and my mom still makes calamari, which we had last night. so i kin relate:)

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  11. I just heard about this tradition on NPR. It sounds delicious!

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  12. love the fish aspect of your christmas! thats so creative!

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  13. so many traditions, and a few italian ones creep in here and there,like eating panettone

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