Over the next few weeks, I will be posting recipes to be used for the Feast of the Seven Fish. This feast is celebrated on CHRISTmas Eve. It is believed to have originated in Southern Italy and is not a known tradition in many parts of Italy. Today, it is a feast that typically consists of seven different seafood dishes. Some American families have been known to celebrate with 9, 11 or 13 different seafood dishes. This celebration is a commemoration of the wait, Vigilia di Natale, for the midnight birth of the baby Jesus.
There are many hypotheses for what the number”7″ relates to, one being the number of Sacraments in the Roman Catholic Church. Another therory is that seven is a number representing perfection: the traditional Biblical number for divinity is three, and for Earth is four, and the combination of these numbers, seven, represents God on Earth, or Jesus Christ.
Of course, I will be doing the Feast of the Seven Fishes, using New Orleans’ style seafood dishes. Check back tomorrow for the first recipe: Crabmeat Ravigote.