Dining the Spanish way on Christmas Eve

Cordoro Asada, Roast Lamb, is just one of the main courses that could be served,






Cordoro Asada, Roast Lamb, is just one of the main courses that could be served.


Here in Spain, the main family festive meal is enjoyed fairly late tonight, often at 9 or even 10pm. It is known as La Noche Buena, which translates literally as The Good Night. It means as much or even more here than Christmas Day lunch or dinner elsewhere. But if you are expecting turkey stuffing and all the trimmings followed by Christmas pudding or mince pies, then I am sorry to disappoint you but you need to think again.

Still, I have done some research and, while there is no standard traditional meal, I have come up with some ideas of what families could be about to enjoy tonight. Take a look:

Tapas or Appetizers (two examples):

  • Jamón, Queso y Chorizo – Ham, Cheese and Spanish Chorizo Sausage on bread.
  • Langostinos con Salsa Rosa – Langoustines or large prawns are boiled, then served with a slightly spicy salsa rosa or pink sauce.

Primer Plato or First Course (one of these five examples, not all!):

  • Sopa de Pescado y Marisco – Fish and Shellfish Soup, served with French bread slices.
  • Sopa de Carabineros – Creamy Spanish Prawn Soup if you prefer a creamy soup. It is full of ‘carabineros’ (large shrimp) and fish, mixed with fish stock and tarragon.
  • Esparragos Blancos – White Asparagus: White asparagus with oil and vinegar.
  • Ensalada de Endibia con Vinagreta – Endive Salad in Tomato Vinaigrette.
  • Spanish Romesco Seafood Pasta Salad.

Plato Principal – Main Course:

In Spain, this is called segundo plato, the ‘second’ course. Beef, lamb, poultry or game can be served with rice or potatoes, such as:

  • Cordero Asado, Patatas Fritas y Ensalada Mixta – Roast Lamb, Home-Fried Potatoes, lightly fried in extra virgin olive oil, and Mixed Green Salad.

Postre – Dessert

Selections of delicious Spanish treats such as:

One of the varieties of traditional Turrón.

One of the varieties of traditional Turrón candy.

  • TurrónSpanish almond candy.
  • Polvorones – Almond cookies.
  • Mantecados – Spanish crumble cakes.

Drinks with the meal

No Spanish Christmas would be complete without several toasts and a few glasses of cava sparkling wine. Spanish cava is generally good quality and reasonably priced.

After dinner dishes, it’s time for a hot cup of espresso coffee and/or a small glass of Spanish sherry brandy or a liqueur.

Has that got your mouth watering and taste buds tingling? Lisa’s and mine most certainly are.

Bon apetito.



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