Christmas dinner is one of the most special meals of the year for Catholics. This is a custom that stretches across the globe and has its particular style in each country. Here’s a look at what is eaten around the world on Christmas Eve.
In this country, it is common roast or pork and serve it on Christmas Eve, accompanied by potato salad or lettuce. Because it’s summer, a frozen dessert or fruit salad is usually eaten, but candies, pudding, and Christmas cake are always a staple.
Although Christmas dishes vary depending on the region, the most common dishes that can be found this time of year for Colombians are tamales, pork, suckling pig, stuffed turkey with chili sauce, and vegetable soup with chunks of meat. The meal is finished off on a sweet note with bread with fruit, biscuits, and custard .
In America, the star of the Christmas Eve is roasted turkey, which is accompanied with cranberry jelly, mashed potatoes and vegetables. Among the traditional sweets are apple and pumpkin pie and traditional drinks include eggnog. However, our multicultural population makes for diverse Christmas Eve’s in every corner of the country. For example, in Miami, where there are a lot of Cubans, lechon asado or roasted pork, replaces the turkey and for Puerto Rican’s, coquito replaces the eggnog.
In the Aztec country, it is customary to eat turkey and tamales, donuts, fish, romeritos and salad made from apples and beets. They also drink ponche or punch, which is made from boiled fruit in water and sweetened with brown sugar and is served hot.
It is traditional to eat turkey or pork and for dessert, panettone with hot chocolate. As for drinks, champagne and cider are common.
Christmas Eve in Uruguay is celebrated by eating pork, chicken, or lamb. Before starting dinner, it is customary to make a “picadita” where meats and cheeses are shared while drinking whiskey and wine.
In Venezuela, on the night of December 24, they eat hallaca, which consists of a corn dough stuffed with a beef stew, chicken, and pork, as well as olives, capers, raisins, onion, paprika, other ingredients that may vary depending on each region. The traditional hallaca is accompanied with pan de jamón or bread ham, and chicken salad and pork. Among the most famous sweets are black cake, fresh papaya, nougat, or panetonne.
In Spain, it is customary to eat a lot of sweets. Among them are the Jijona and Alicante turrones (nougats). Marzipan, dates, and shortbread are never missing from the Christmas table. As for savory foods, it is common to find a variety of dishes such as pork, lamb, or turkey. Seafood such as prawns and cod are also common.
Christmas menu’s in Italy vary vastly throughout the regions of the peninsula, but there are certain dishes such as fried vegetables and fish salad that are common. Of course, there are pasta dishes in different forms, the most common being pasta with tomato sauce and tuna and spaghetti mixed with seafood. One of Italy’s typical Christmas desserts is the panettone, which is filled with candied fruit or chocolate in its most modern presentations. Pandoro Panforte is also common.
Depending on the area, turkey or baked cod with potatoes and eggs are typically served. It is also customary to serve octopus. Aside from cookies, nuts and cakes are also available. The traditional sweet is the Bolo Rey o Pastel Rey, which is placed at the center of the table and served with port wine.