Every holiday has specific foodstuffs very much associated with it.
But few occasions have the virtual cornucopia that Christmas Eve boasts. From tamales to posole to green chile casserole to cookies for dinner (a tradition held by some very forward-thinking families), the 24th of December has a number of classic menus and dishes.
The Feast of the Seven Fishes, or La Vigilia, is a major one. The Italian tradition is not simply about putting out seven different fishes on a platter but seven grand and tasty courses. Some families go for more dishes, but few ever go for less.
And while it certainly can be and is observed at home, several Los Angeles restaurants stock the shellfish and salmon in anticipating of Christmas Eve.
Drago Centro will be celebrating with some fish-laden flourishes and fancy treats. Maine lobster cappuccino is one such intriguing entry. Other items on the downtown restaurant's Dec. 24 menu include roasted monkfish with a truffle potato puree and spaghetti with tuna bottarga.
Tavern will also be throwing its own Feast. We're eying the oh-so-classic cioppino as well as a crab and squid salad. We'll add the dessert does not contain any seafood -- no real surprise there -- it is a wonderful and traditional cannoli.
And Providence? The Melrose avenue destination has marked La Vigilia for several years now. Items from the 2012 menu will include wild Norwegian cod and king crab. Prime beef, which of course is not seafood, makes a surprise showing as well.