Feast of the Seven Fishes

If you are Italian American, it is likely that for you, Christmas Eve means that some type of fish is involved! The feast of the seven fishes is known as "Esta Dei Sette Pesci”. It is a Christmas Eve tradition celebrated by Italian Americans. Although the majority of Italians enjoy eating fish during this day, not all are familiar with the origins, or the symbolism of the feast.

Italian Christmas Traditions

Most countries and cultures have their own Christmas traditions and the Italians are no different. At this festive time of the year, most people in Italy get involved in the celebrations in one way or another. The history and culture of the Italians have led to them following many interesting and unique traditions during the holiday season. Many of these are now followed in other locations across the globe as Italians have emigrated and passed on their way of life in New communities. Here are some of the best Italian Christmas traditions.

Biscotti Cookie Recipe

The biscotti originated in Tuscany, Italy centuries ago during Roman times. The word "biscotti" is Italian for cookie or biscuit. It is made of two words "bis" and "cotto" meaning "twice" and "baked". They were baked twice so that they would become crisp and could be stored for longer periods of time and remain fresh during voyages.  Today biscotti are commonly eaten with Vin Santo, cappuccinos, or lattes. These sweet, crisp, almond cookies can be dipped in chocolate as well, and are perfect for the holidays!

Frank Sinatra – Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas

A Jolly Christmas  is a well known Christmas album by the one and only Frank Sinatra.  It was Sinatra's very first full length Christmas album, featuring 12 wonderful songs. Although the album was released in 1957, Sinatra's classic Christmas songs will never get old!

Panettone [Italian Christmas Cake]

Nothing says Christmas to Italians like a slice of delicious panettone cake with a cappuccino, café latte, or sweet wine. Originating in Milan, Italy this classic sweet bread loaf dates back to the 1500s. It was previously referred to as "pane di tono" which means "luxury cake”, which it most certainly is. Its fluffy texture, nuts, and candied fruits make it the perfect dessert and gift this Christmas! Today it can be seen in almost every Italian household throughout the holiday season! Ideal for baking during a cold winter day!