spanish xmas dinner

Do Christmas Dinner Spanish Style

Last Updated on 19/11/2021 by richard

🎄When to Eat?

To do Christmas dinner Spanish style, you eat on Christmas Eve unlike here in the UK where we traditionally eat in the middle of Christmas day.

🎄A Bit of Family History

At my parent’s house, we ate at 1:00 pm prompt. Overcooked dry turkey, soggy bitter whole brussels sprouts, pigs in blankets, Christmas pudding, pulling crackers, silly hats and terrible jokes. A fairly standard 1960’s Christmas dinner.

standard uk christmas dinner
UK Christmas Dinner

🎄The Christmas Sixpence

At that time there was a tradition of burying a silver sixpence in the Christmas pudding. One of the lucky diners would “find” the coin, usually with their teeth if they hadn’t accidentally swallowed it!

british predecimal sixpence
British Predecimal Sixpence

Us children would be overjoyed if we found the sixpence (2½p in today’s money) and it was off to the sweet shop asap.

Again in keeping with tradition, everything had to be served, eaten and cleared away by 3:00 pm ready for the annual Queens speech to the nation. So about 2 hours in total.

🎄Christmas Dinner Spanish Style

spanish xmas tapas
Start with Tapas

In Spanish homes, Christmas Eve, or La Noche Buena (“The Good Night”), is a real feast with family and friends. There are many courses starting with tapas-style appetisers, starters, the main course, dessert and concluding many hours later with Cava, Brandy and coffee.

Spanish Xmas dinner
Main course
coffee and brandy
Finish with espresso and brandy

Most families will attend either an early evening or midnight mass and enjoy their Christmas feast from late evening onwards, sometimes into the early hours. Fiesta!

midnight mass

There are five opportunities for Spanish families to indulge in feasting over the Christmas period:

  • Christmas Eve Dinner – the main event
  • Christmas Day Lunch
  • New Years Eve Dinner
  • New Years Day Lunch
  • Three Kings Day – on January 6th

If you would like to try Christmas dinner Spanish style here are some suggested recipes which are favourites of ours. Give them a try, you won’t be disappointed.

🎄 Feliz Navidad!

feliz navidad
Merry Christmas!

Other Stuff You Maybe Interested in …..

🎄Menu (Menú de Noche Buena)

Appetisers (Tapas)

Chorizo-Filled Dates Wrapped in Bacon
Check out this recipe
chorizo stuffed dates
Sauteed Chorizo with Red Wine
An authentic Chorizo Al Vino Tinto tapas
Check out this recipe
chorizo in red wine
Authentic Ham Croquetas
This easy croquetas de jamón Serrano recipe proves that the true trick to Spanish ham croquettes is time, patience, and a great arm for stirring the bechamel sauce!
Check out this recipe
ham croquetas
Crispy Squid with Harissa Mayo
Fresh, crispy squid dunked into this beautifully bold harissa mayo – perfect for feeding a crowd.
Check out this recipe
crispy squid with harissa mayo

Starter (Primer Plato)

Spanish Fish and Shellfish Soup
Sopa de Pescado y Marisco combines fish, clams, and shrimp with white wine and rice for a rich and flavorful dish
Check out this recipe
spanish fish and seafood soup
Seafood Pasta (Portuguese style)
This traditional Portuguese dish of seafood pasta is an excellent choice for a lunch among friends!
Check out this recipe
seafood pasta

Mains (Plato Principal)

Spanish Roast Lamb
Traditionally cooked Spanish roast lamb for a spectacular Sunday dinner or alternative Christmas feast.
Check out this recipe
spanish roast lamb

In the Extremadura region of Spain, a traditional dish of marinated chicken prepared with almonds, saffron, garlic and orange zest is served along with other meats.

Escabeche de Pollo de Navidad (Marinated Christmas Chicken)
Zesty egg coated chicken fried and served with an almond, saffron and garlic sauce.
Check out this recipe
escabeche de pollo

Dessert (Postre)

Spanish Christmas Almond Cookies – Polvorones
Polvorones are a traditional Christmas treat made from crumbly almond shortbread.
Check out this recipe
spanish almond cookies

Cava, Brandy and Coffee

Round off your special Christmas meal with a toast or two to good friends and family with a lovely chilled Cava.

cava
Lovely Spanish cava
cardenal mendoza
Cardenal Mendoza Brandy

Then relax and enjoy the evening with a fine Cardenal Mendoza brandy and a liqueur coffee.

irish coffee
Irish Coffee

If you are entertaining this Christmas Eve and want to try something different for your family and friends, explore some of these dishes and try doing it Spanish style!

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