These are my aunts Anna and Rita. They cook an amazing meal for at least ten members of our family every Christmas Eve, and all of us love them very much. A lot of my friends ask me to email them photos of our annual feast, and so I decided to make it easy and upload a bunch here. I hope you all had a great holiday. We did.
I came across some lard bread in the morning and couldn't pass it up.
Neither could Joanna and Josephine.
Anna's baked clams. One day I hope to make them as good, but I'm not holding my breath.
Rita's angel hair with garlic, hazelnuts and almonds. Simple and perfect.
Rita and Joan's fried shrimp will make you weep. Two platters and not a single shrimp was left.
It's not Christmas Eve without seafood salad, and Anna's is excellent.
So much so that these two are always sliding it to their side of the table.
These mussels were a surprise dish. Simple and extremely tasty.
Broiled baccala with cherry peppers. Love, love, love it.
Also a baccala salad. Even the non believers were all over this salad; it was terrific.
Cousins Alec and Joan discuss strategy over the next dish to show up. Will they or won't they?
Stewed eel with olives and prosciutto. They did eat it. So did everybody else. One of the best eel dishes I've ever had, and I eat plenty of eel.
And of course a couple baked lobsters. Just in case we were still hungry.
I've said this before: Josephine may be the finest baker that I know. I always look forward to her Christmas cookies and biscotti.
Christmas Eve is also her birthday, and Goombah Joe remembered.
Anna went above and beyond this year and surprised us all with homemade pasticiotti. I damn near cried.
Yeah, we had a little wine. Just ask cousin Frank, he'll tell you.
We'll be back next year. I hope.