2. While Dylan McDermott and all other non-Italians are busy eating turkey on Christmas…
You just had turkey for Thanksgiving. What’s the prob? You didn’t have enough leftovers?
4. It all starts on Christmas Eve with the Feast of the Seven Fishes, or “Esta dei Sette Pesci.”
A traditional Christmas Eve dinner is a meal that consists of seven seafood items, but some Italians have up to 13. And the types of seafood range anywhere from lobster to calamari, fried to grilled, and served alone or on top of pasta. (But we all want the pasta, right?)
The feast originated from the Roman Catholic tradition of abstaining from meat and dairy on Fridays and holy days. So, since the Italians couldn’t celebrate waiting for the birth of baby Jesus with meat, they turned to fish. Lots of fish.
5. And by “Feast of the Seven Fishes,” I’m talking about fish pasta, like puttanesca.
For those who haven’t tried this dish — and you MUST — it’s a sauce with olives, capers, anchovies, and tomatoes. It’s also topped with cheese, but if it’s Italian then that’s pretty much a given.
9. Basically, the night before Christmas, Italians just get to gorge on a bunch of absolutely fantastic fish.
Then when we wake up, Santa has come and left presents under the tree for us. It’s like we had a Christmas the night before, and get to relive it the next morning, basically.
10. Oh, and did I mention that you wash it all down with some fine Italian vino?
11. Then there’s Christmas day. You ready for this? Because it starts with more alcohol.
12. After opening gifts, and before Christmas dinner even begins, there’s the antipasto platter.
Think ham, capicola, prosciutto, salami, turkey, provolone and pecorino cheeses, black olives, artichoke hearts, red roasted peppers, and vinegar peppers. So many things.
14. Next, it’s time for the main event — dinner — which means it’s time to BRING ON THE MEATBALLS.
Seriously, the meatballs are just one part of the meal. Get ready.
15. Much like the Feast of Seven Fishes, Christmas day is basically the Feast of Meats, like braciole and pasta.
Braciole is a thin slice of meat that’s typically wrapped around a stuffing, cooked with wine, and tossed over pasta. It will make you forget the meatballs ever happened, then weep with tears of joy.
24. So, what I’m saying is this: Would you like to come to my Italian Christmas dinner?
You look like you could use some pasta right about now.
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