Seafood Christmas: More Traditional Than You Think
Christmas is a holiday well known for its food. From eggnog to the fruitcake to a Christmas turkey, the foods of Christmas are iconic and easy to visualize without any prompts. So, it’s unsurprising that, for some, the idea of having anything other than the foods we know is sacrilegious!
The reality, however, is that Christmas is a pretty universal holiday, and traditions vary wildly depending on the country you go to. In fact, sometimes you don’t even need to leave the country! For example, seafood is as much a part of daily life as anything else in Portland, Maine, and our connection to the ocean runs deep. So, it stands to reason that we like to mix things up on Christmas!
So, for today’s blog, we’re going to introduce you to the wonderful tradition of the Feast of Seven Fishes, where there’s seafood aplenty, and the good times are felt by all!
The Feast of Seven Fishes tradition goes back to Southern Italy, a region also surrounded by miles of coastline. Unfortunately, the area was also historically poorer than the northern regions as well, meaning the population had to work with what they had. As you can imagine, there probably weren’t that many Christmas turkeys going around, so the people used seafood as the linchpins of their Christmas feasts.
During the Italian civil war of the late 1800s, many Italians, particularly those from the affected southern regions, moved to America to start a new life away from the conflict - bringing their traditions with them and creating a popular Italian-American practice in the process!
Don’t worry, though; while the origins are Italian-American; there’s no reason you can’t enjoy a feast of seven fishes of your very own! The point is to enjoy the company of family and friends while eating the best seafood you can get your hands on.
The Seven Fishes
One of the funny things about this tradition is that it’s very unclear just what the “seven fishes” are and what they’re meant to signify. But, thankfully, that just means you get to make up your own reasons and have an excuse to put as much delicious seafood as you can on the table!
Now, we might be a little bit biased, but we reckon a Feast of Seven Fishes is missing a certain je ne sais quoi without including a little bit of Maine lobster on the menu! The rules for what you should have are pretty loose, to say the least, with no two menus ever looking the same, the only constant being the good times spent with family and friends.
So, if you’re looking for a great way to celebrate Christmas, but you’re tired of having the same staples as every other year, then why consider bringing a time-honored tradition to your home and trying your own Feast of Seven Fishes!
That’s it for today’s blog from Get Maine Lobster. Keep an eye out for our next blog entry to learn more about what we’re up to and what makes Maine Lobster so unique. Until then, we’ll see you later!