Christmas is only FOUR days away and with that, I’m starting to cook and bake and prep for Christmas Eve. This year looks MUCH different for us as we normally have both of our families with us to celebrate Christmas Eve together, but COVID has hit my side of the family this past week and with reduced gathering limits, we can’t all be together this holiday. We’re making adjustments and doing drive-bys to see each other at a safe distance, but still trying to make the best of it!

You would think that with less people coming over this Christmas Eve my menu would be less, but that would be logical and when I cook, I’m never logical, haha! I don’t do a typical “Seven Fishes” on Christmas Eve bc I personally don’t like a lot of the fishes! I like to infuse some seafood into my menu bc its only fitting! On a typical year, I’d have double if not triple the appetizers and desserts, as well as more seafood – spaghetti & crab for one, but I am toning it down a little.

So here’s what this year’s menu looks like:

Appetizers:

Charcuterie Board – find some charcuterie ideas HERE
Shrimp Cocktail
Fried Calamari **recipe below**

Entree:

Salad
Baked Ziti
Sausage & Meatballs
Fresh Italian Bread

**I might make some homemade gnocchi too bc I just loved being able to make my own!**

Desserts:

Gingerbread Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
Dessert Charcuterie Board
Flan – courtesy of my MIL

Beverages:

Wine & Beer
Coquito – my MIL makes a GOOOOOOOD coquito!
A Very Merry Mule


Fried Calamari

Calamari is one of our go-to appetizer choices any time we go out to eat and I never realized how easy it is to make until a few years ago! Since then, its on our Christmas Eve Menu every year!

Ingredients:

1/2 lb squid, cut into rings
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1 egg, beaten
vegetable oil for frying

Directions:

Heat vegetable oil in saucepan over medium-high heat.

Combine flour, cayenne pepper, and paprika in a dish with a pinch of salt. Put the egg in a separate dish.

Add the squid to the flour mix and toss well. Remove the rings from the flour and shake off all extra flour then dip into the egg. Lift the squid rings out of the bowl allowing any extra egg to run off.

Add the squid onto the hot oil and cook for 2 minutes. Drain on paper towel and serve immediately with some marinara sauce and lemon wedges.


I might try doing these in my air fryer this year and might put together a quick aioli sauce to have two dipping options!

Also for those who’ve been asking, this is the tutorial I used to make my gnocchi last week. However, I baked my potatoes in the microwave instead of the oven for time’s sake. I will share my own personal recipe as I work on it a little more these next few weeks.


Looking for all of my holiday content? Head over to The Holiday Guide HERE for lots of gift options and other holiday fun!

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