Fish Recipes for Christmas

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Whether or not you want to eat seafood at Christmas because of the southern Italian tradition of the Feast of Seven Fishes, you have some great options that can make your holiday meal special. Traditionally, some Italians and Italian-Americans eat seafood on Christmas Eve, partly because it's a Vigil night, in which no meat is eaten. But then there are feasts of nine, 11, and 13 fishes, all numbers with a religious, historical, or cultural meaning. People don't agree which fish is appropriate, or even if seafood in general (like shellfish) is best to honor the holiday. Regardless, here are some delicious options from our waters. Stews come to mind when the weather is cold, so consider a comforting, healthy Mediterranean fish stew like this one with clams, white fish, leeks, and fennel.