Feast of the Seven Fishes

Feast of the Seven Fishes

Image of feast of the seven fishes

One of the most classic Italian-American holiday traditions is the Feat of the Seven Fishes, celebrated every year on Christmas Eve. Its said to have originated in Southern Italy and comes from the ritual of abstaining from consuming meat the day before holy days, but we owe it to the Italian-Americans of the early 1900s for re-popularizing the feast.

It's safe to say that many Italians have probably never heard or celebrated this tradition because of the rich cuisine diversity in Italy. Other regions have their own quintessential Christmas Eve dishes, for instance, Romans typically enjoy a fish-based soup called minestra di pesce.

Regardless of your background or religion, the feast is a delightful thing to celebrate if you're a seafood lover. It features seven seafood dishes prepared in different ways. Explore our favorite seafood dishes for the Feast of the Seven fishes below, along with a refreshing dessert recipe. 


Image of whole roasted fish

Savory & Aleppo Roasted Branzino

It may seem daunting, but preparing a whole roasted fish is actually quite simple. Season it with a delicious spice blend and roast with veggies for a built-in side.


Image of seafood Paella

Seafood & Chorizo Paella

Although paella is a traditional Spanish dish, it's a great addition to this meal because of the rice and ample shellfish.


Poached Salmon

Poaching salmon in a flavorful brother renders a deliciously tender fillet that's seasoned to the core.


Image of eschabeche sardines

Escabeche of Sardine

Draped over salad leaves, slices of tender potato, or in between fluffy slices of country bread, escabeche of sardine is a flavorful classic that the Mediterranean countries like to all claim as their own. 


Image of Chraime


Cod cooked in a thick, flavorful tomato sauce seasoned with a lot of spices. 


Image of shabazi calamari

Shabazi Fried Calamari

Fried Calamari is one of the more traditional dishes served in the Feast of the Seven Fishes. The highlight of our version is the fried lemon slices and Shabazi fry flour.


Image of swordfish

Seared Swordfish with Orange Soy Glaze



Seamed Mussels with Fennel & Lemon

Simple and delicious. Serve with crusty bread to soak up the flavorful juices.


Amba Crab Cakes

Using jumbo lump crab makes these crab cakes rich and luxurious. This recipe is easily duplicated based on how many cakes you need.


Image of scallops

Thyme-Seared Scallops

A flavorful pan sauce is the key to making this delicious scallop dish.


Gambas al Ajillo

Another way to use our favorite Harissa Honey condiment for an easy shrimp dish.


Cod Brandade

In this recipe, chef Jeremy Flowers opts to quick cure cod for an ultra flavorful brandade.


Dipping Sauces

Amba Aioli

This zesty condiment compliments many of the recipes listed above!


Image of vegan fennel aioli

Vegan Fennel Aioli

Another wonderful condiment, made using fennel, oil, and a multitude of spices.


For Dessert

Lemon Basil Tiramisu

Citrus and seafood is a classic combination. In this dessert, ladyfingers are soaked in a lemon-basil syrup and layered in between citrusy mascarpone cream. 


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