Christmas is one of the best traditions to get to know Neapolitan cuisine. Here are what Neapolitans traditionally eat at Xmas Eve and at Xmas.
Christmas Eve Neapolitan Menu
The traditional Christmas Eve Neapolitan Menu begins with an ‘antipasto’, a starter that usually includes bruschetta (bread), Italian-style fried dry, fried coldfish, mozzarella, ham…
The first one of the main dishes is spaghetti with clams (spaghetti con le vongole in Italian). Many people eat soup with meat and vegetables called minestra maritata, instead. The second great dish is fried or roasted eel (capitone in Italian). Traditions may vary from family to family: others prefer to eat meat even if the Italian tradition is different. The classic side dish is cauliflowers with capers, anchovies, olives, garlic, vinegar. It is called ‘Insalata di rinforzo’.
There are many Xmas desserts in the Neapolitan Menu for Xmas Eve! Sweets such as mostaccioli, struffoli (pastries with honey).
Xmas Day Neapolitan Menu
The Neapolitan Menu for Xmas Day usually starts with the soup minestra maritata. Lasagna, tortellini, cannelloni, and timballo are other pasta tyes and recipes that many Neapolitan families eat on Xmas.
The traditional second course of the Xmas Day Neapolitan Menu is the roasted turkey. It is usually served with broccoli and caponata, or with aubergine.
As for Xmas Eve, the sweets are the most traditional ones: struffoli, and mustaccioli are a must!
Other traditional sweets are Panettone and Pandoro. Even if they are not part of the authentic Neapolitan traditions, everyone includes them in the Xmas menu.
Every Italian long meal ends with a coffee or with a digestive. Digestives usually are spirits such as the limoncello. Spirits are part of Italian traditions as well. Limoncello is made in the Sorrento peninsula and in Amalfi Coast. The best is produced with the lemons of this area.