The New Year is right around the corner. One thing you may know is that some Italians can be superstitious and like to stay true to their traditions. Many traditions involve some type of food and the New Year’s Eve traditions are no exception! Italians like to enjoy hearty foods that will symbolize good fortune and prosperity in the New Year!
Lentils have many symbols for this holiday meal. They are round like coins. Lentils are eaten for the hope of prosperity and good luck. This tradition can be linked back to the early days of Rome. In our family, my mother picked up the tradition from her mother and the matriarch of Angelo Caputo’s Fresh Markets, Romana Caputo. Nonna Romana would make lentil soup to be eaten after the clock strikes midnight as a sign of good luck and prosperity for the New Year.
Many people also eat sausage with their lentils. This is said to symbolize abundance. When sausage and lentils are eaten together, it means that the New Year will be even better than the last!
We offer dry lentils for you to make yourself or pick up one of our homemade lentil soups from our prepared foods section!
Another way to ring in the New Year is by eating grapes! At midnight you eat 12 grapes, one for each month. When you eat each grape, you are supposed to make a wish for that month!
Christmas is almost here! It’s time for those final preparations which includes planning your meals, but sometimes, per tradition, you already know what your meal will consist of! An important tradition in our family and many Italian-American families is the Feast of the Seven Fishes.
The Feast of the Seven Fishes gained popularity in America; however, is not known as the same thing in Italy. Each region of Italy has different meals that they prepare for La Vigilia, or Christmas Eve, so the traditional meals tend to vary region by region. Although the meals are different, they mainly consume light, meatless dishes. As with many Italian traditions, they are rooted in faith. Many people speculate that the Feast of the Seven Fishes gets its name because seven is a motif in the bible– the sacraments, days of creation, and more! The Christmas Eve meal includes varieties of different types of fish all prepared in different ways. There is no limit to how many varieties of fish you can eat- each family has their own routine.
Here are 3 of our favorites that we can’t wait to enjoy during the feast:
Fried, in pasta, or with cocktail sauce- shrimp is a delicious seafood that is easy to incorporate into many dishes and that is widely loved (even by those picky eaters).
Our homemade octopus salad goes through a specific process. We first tenderize the octopus, then marinate it with our signature blend of spices, oils, vinegars, and vegetables. It is a perfect course during your feast!
Lobster is a light fish that has a bit of a sweeter taste. With a little bit of warm butter drizzled over the fish, you can’t even tell it’s a fish which makes it another great option for the picky eaters!
Stop by and visit our seafood department for a wide variety of fresh fish! See some of our offerings here
It’s time to start thinking about meal prep for what may be the biggest holiday of the year. Sharing a meal on Christmas Eve and Christmas is sure to help you make some happy memories. At Caputo’s, we want you to have a hassle free holiday, so we will do the work for you! Our Homemade Holiday Feast is perfect for the holiday season and will allow you to spend quality time with the family! This homemade feast features a main entree, multiple side dishes, condiments, and dessert!
We offer a full feast that will make your holidays much easier! Our homemade feast feeds 10-12 people and is made with all natural foods, no preservatives, and the nostalgia that comes with home cooking. For the main entree, there is a choice between an oven roasted turkey or an oven baked ham. Both items are holiday classics so you can’t go wrong with either one of them! Plus, the ham comes with our very own signature apricot pineapple glaze!
You will get sides–vegetables, potatoes, a salad, and bread. There are different options to pick from in each category to make your dinner perfect. To go along with your meal are condiments! You will get two cans of either jelly or cranberry sauce!
Can’t forget dessert! The feast comes with a fresh 8” La Bella Romana apple or pumpkin pie!
The feast is available hot for Christmas Eve or you can request it cold and warm it up to enjoy on Christmas Day!
Maybe you’re looking for a part of your meal, an antipasto tray, a dessert… we can help you make your holiday perfect!
With the holidays coming up, we take a moment to reflect on all of our blessings and think of what we can do to give back.
Earlier this year, we lost our founder, Angelo Caputo. Anyone who has known Angelo and Romana Caputo can attest to the fact that they were the most generous people. In an effort to honor their name, we have created the Angelo and Romana Caputo Foundation. Angelo and Romana’s true pride and passion was family. They loved their children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren. Nothing made them happier than seeing their family together. In addition, they had a unique ability to make people feel at home. Whether staying for a week or an hour, you were made to feel like part of the family and a treasured guest as soon as you walked into the Caputo household.
With this in mind, we have partnered with Ronald McDonald House Charities of Chicagoland & Northwest Indiana (RMHC-CNI) who exists so families with hospitalized children can get better together.Their goal of keeping families together during an incredibly difficult and unimaginable time is on brand for the Caputo Family. No family should have to be separated from their children, especially in a time of crisis. Ronald McDonald House allows parents who are far from home to stay close to their hospitalized child and benefit from the comforts of home without incurring hotel and food costs.
We are confident that our missions align and are inspired by the hard work of all those involved in the RMHC-CNI! To help support the Ronald McDonald House we’ve got a few different programs in-store.
One way to get involved is by donating to our holiday toy drive! Every kid that enters the house starts by going to the toy room and picking out a brand new toy! We will be collecting toys in each of our locations and dropping them off to the local chapters. You can get involved by dropping off new, unwrapped toys or gift cards! We will have the toy drive run through the end of the year!
Pop Tab Program
Sometimes the little things can make a big difference! Another way to get involved is to collect your pop tabs and donate them! These pop tabs are the aluminum tabs you pull open soda, soups, and other cans with! Collect them in your house and drop them off at our stores. Look for the little RMHC-CNI or give them to the service desk. These tabs will be collected, given back to Ronald McDonald House, and where it is donated for scrap metal!
We look forward to our continued partnership in support of the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Chicagoland & Northwest Indiana. Keep an eye out for more opportunities to get involved!