A lot of Christmas traditions dictate that seafood be an integral part of the dinner menu. Fish or lobster tails as the main dinner entrée might be a go-to, but there are so many additions and variations that can take your seafood menu to the next level. Let’s start with an appetizer idea to start of dinner and work our way through the meal.
For an appetizer that can easily be shared with family and friends, you might want to try a crab dip. There are all sorts of variations that include cream cheese; mustard, hot sauce and even sour cream but they of course all require crabmeat. Mixed together in a bowl and baked in the oven, this is an easy appetizer that can be served for everyone at once with crackers, chips or pita.
A more bite-sized option that always goes over well is anything bacon wrapped. Luckily, seafood is just as good wrapped in bacon as just about any other food. If you have pieces of lobster meat or sea scallops, either can be rolled into a strip of bacon and cooked. Served on a toothpick, these are quick snacks that are great before dinner. They mix fatty and lean, while not filling up guests too much before dinner.
To be served as a side or an entrée, have you ever considered lobster mac and cheese? A crowd-favorite, comfort food, mac and cheese can be made from scratch in a crock-pot or in the oven. Adding lobster meat to this dish ties together pasta and a seafood. The richness of the pasta pairs perfectly with the richness of lobster. It also makes great leftovers, warmed up in the microwave.
Just like bacon adds some salt and fat to the meal, crab cakes can add a fried or baked element. Much like Polish cheese patties or Italian raviolis, crab cakes cooked on a skillet or griddle adds crab to the menu in along with bread and mayonnaise. Adding spicy seasoning gives traditional crab cakes new life and will pleasantly surprised guests that are looking for a little kick in their meal.
These four ideas are just some of the ways you can make your seafood based Christmas dinner a little different than last year’s. Changing the portion can turn an entrée idea into an appetizer or vice versa. No matter what seafood offers a lot of opportunity for new, unique dishes that will be remembered Christmas after Christmas.