Friday, December 20, 2013

Ching e Ching Christmas is Coming!
We are in the final stages…
Christmas will soon be here
Who is excited?
Who’s nervous?                            
Who can’t wait for it to be over? 

The one thing I look forward to is our traditional Italian Christmas Eve Feast!  
Plus we need to listen to Dominick the Donkey! Enjoy!

What is a traditional Italian Christmas Eve Feast it is a seafood spectacular banquet (YAY!) … Many Italian families call it the feast of the seven fishes, in my family we never counted how many fish recipes were made. Therefore, we didn't call it the Seven Fishes Feast. We call it Christmas Eve. Quite honestly I am not sure why we eat fish on Christmas Eve, I always thought it was similar to following the Lenten rule during advent, and thought that as Catholics we are not supposed to eat meat on a holy day; I also read that it started so that one can attend midnight mass.  At this point I am not really sure and even though I attended Catholic school I now realize that I don't ever recall the nuns telling us not to eat meat during advent or on Christmas Eve. Having said all of that bottom line it's a tradition, that is what we do, and it is Seafood Yum!.

This year as in the past we will be at my sister‘s house; that is my second sister Claudia….we celebrate it at her house because we also celebrate my nieces birthday; yes they were born on Christmas Eve….

We always start out with my dad’s famous fish salad

Then we will have Spaghetti with vongole (clams)

The table will be filled with so many wonderful seafood dishes.  It’s a tradition and we all know how to pace ourselves and enjoy each bite.

Shrimp Scampi will probably be served

Fried Calamari definitely …oh my mouth ….I cannot wait!  

On the side, we will have a salad, broccoli rabe (maybe), potatoes (perhaps); but without a doubt mom will make these

Cardoons – have you ever tried them they are delicious - my mom makes these – read what Epicurious wrote about them I inserted below the pictures.

Only a culture that loves food could have come up with multiple techniques for cooking the cardoon—this thistle (a cousin of the artichoke that also tastes like one) with the texture of overgrown celery requires meticulous preparation. But the fact that Italians and Italian-Americans alike scour the markets for it come fall is evidence enough that it's worth it. A light coating and deep-frying really enhance the vegetable's subtle flavor.

These are not my pictures… my pictures and recipes of a sea faring culinary feast will follow!

Mangia, Mangia…No Talk!


  1. Marisa,
    This post just made me nervous.I have not had a chance to do any holiday shopping or even grocery shopping for our Christmas meal. I have been sending my husband for "go get me this" at grocery store. ahh so much to do.
    But, Today his VACATION starts for 3 weeks and I am going to have him just stay at home while I get everything. yes, even my own Christmas gift. Nah..just kidding. I think he's taking care of that .I don't want or need anything. I have everything I always wanted.
    but, I do need to go for a pedi, a girls lunch, and my hair needs some color touch up.
    I love the seafood extravaganza sounds so neat. We usually have a Ham, or Steaks .
    Have yourself a Very Merry CHRISTmas!!!

    1. Marissa it will all get always does take deep breaths and play the baby card! If not somehow magically it gets done!

  2. I like to think I'm familiar with many Christmas songs, but Dominick the Donkey is a new one to me! Guess what I'll be humming in my head all day? :-)

    I haven't had cardoons, but I love artichokes, so I imagine I'd also love cardoons. Your feast sounds wonderful. Merry Christmas!

    1. I was thinking of you when I wrote about cardoons, I remembered how you like artichokes and don't you grow them too, I thought you would know what they ...look for them they look like a rough version of a celery glad you enjoyed the song !!!!! LOL!

  3. Marisa,

    I am quite familiar with the Italian tradition of seafood fare on Christmas eve, as my first serious relationship was with a second generation Italian, in Canada, in university. EVERYTHING was homemade and DELICIOUS!! I'm sure your Christmas eve gathering and feast will be, too. Lucky you!

    Merry Christmas to you and your family; all the very best in the new year!


    1. All I can say is Thank Goodness we love seafood...cannot wait for this meal! Thank you for stopping by and as for you Miss Poppy hang in there smile, sing bring that wonderful spirit into your beautiful home ...Merry Christmas! And happy new year!

  4. alas! christmas is over and i'm seeing you in my mind's eye as FINALLY getting some rest!
    i hope so!
    i love dominick the donkey. as kristi said. it's in my head now!
    and in my heart.
    thanks to my dear friend marisa.
    love to you little one. and a happy and maybe not such a busy new year! ♥

    1. Oh we love Dominick the donkey very funny ...last week Nick surprised me with a Mexican singing dog (I think it's suppose to be a Chihuahua, but looks more like a Jack Russell,so cute LOL! ) singing Santa Claus where are you it's Christmas Eve....He saw it in Walgreen's and thought this will make Marisa smile ! I love silly things like that...yes Christmas is over next is New year! wishing you a much needed healthy and relaxation new year ! Psst I know what is going on at the Peanut and I will comment soon (not happy about it but I do understand ) ... I was wondering if you would consider adding some Eastern approaches; not medicine but perhaps meditation, not sure about yoga ...but definitely Qigong ... did you know that there is a square in china that this is practiced every morning ,,,it is not hard at all and so relaxing also there is a group of chronic patients that practice this and have out lived their prognosis well it doesn't hurt and the first rule of the Hippocratic Oath is "heal thyself! I think! Thanks for stopping by! <3 <3 <3 Marisa


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Shopping List - April 24,2016

Vegetables/Fruit Bananas .49cents a lb. 1 bunch Tomatoes .99cents a lb. 4 or 5 Eggplants 1.39lb get three String Beans @ .99 cents a pound Avocado @ .99 cents each (2) Mangoes 2 for $3.00 (2) Bag of Eastern Potatoes $1.99 Limes and lemons Mini Cucumbers 1.99 English Cucumbers 2 for $3.00 Romaine Hearts 1.99 Deli/Bakery Pretzel Chips Feta cheese Hummus – Boars head 2 for 5.00 (1) Pita flat bread (Greek) Meat Chicken Cutlets 3.49 a pound Chicken Kabobs 3.99 a pound Dairy/Frozen Mozzarella Shredded Cheese $2.50 Plain Greek Yogurt or Tzatziki sauce (deli) Ricotta Cheese Biazzo $3.99 Almond Milk 2 for 6.00 I need is 1 Grocery One box of Orzo Coffee $4.99 Cups Paper Plates 1 can of Tomato Sauce - small can One bottle of Balsamic vinegar Cereal –General Mills 1.99

What's for dinner - W/O April 24,2016

Dinners This week April 24, 2016


Chicken Kababs – Greek Salad and Orzo


Fusilli with Ricotta Cheese- salad and Italian bread


Chicken Cutlets-Salad- Green Beans - French-fries


Eggplant parm – salad and rolls to make sandwiches


Peppers and Egg Frittata – Rolls and Salad

Friday – Tuna Salad – fries- salad - (green)

Saturday – Fun night – could be take out, homemade pizza, Mexican (homemade) Deli-Meat quesadillas, grilled cheese and soup – or Diner style cheeseburgers. Until next week’s flyer

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