1 - 13 of 13 Posts

k_tsoukalas

Administrator
Lent for Orthodox Christians begins on Monday (March 15th), which got me thinking about Easter. I am curious - what are some of your favorite Easter traditions? For me, going to church on Saturday night and bringing home the candle, breaking our Lenten fast with a nice meal after church (usually pastitso, kouloura, olives, feta cheese, and a red Easter egg), and eating lamb the next day, are some of my favorites.
 
It is such a special time for us.My dad cooked a whole lamb outside. I took it over for many years and now I cook 2 lamb legs. My son-in-law likes his rare.
Of course, I went to church every day.
 
How is Greek easter different from Catholic or western easter?
 
  • Like
Reactions: voula_slat
How is Greek easter different from Catholic or western easter?
As for timing, I know Orthodox Easter has to be after the first full moon after the Jewish Passover. Western Easter simply has to be after the Equinox. Sometimes they're on the same day. However, if you listen to the Greek comedian Basile, he said it's because it enables the Easter Bunny to buy half price candy.
 
Lent for Orthodox Christians begins on Monday (March 15th), which got me thinking about Easter. I am curious - what are some of your favorite Easter traditions? For me, going to church on Saturday night and bringing home the candle, breaking our Lenten fast with a nice meal after church (usually pastitso, kouloura, olives, feta cheese, and a red Easter egg), and eating lamb the next day, are some of my favorites.
Besides participating in extra church services and fasting through lent, Easter Day is quite the celebration in our house. The food always includes pastitsio, lamb, koulouria , a Greek sweet bread in individually baked pieces that was a recipe unique to my mother-n-law's family. I have yet to see a comparable recipe in Greek cook books. For dessert koulourakia are always included. So many traditions. Here are some koulourakia and the sweet bread right out of the oven.
 

Attachments

  • Screen Shot 2021-03-12 at 6.37.20 PM.png
    Screen Shot 2021-03-12 at 6.37.20 PM.png
    798.7 KB · Views: 0
Last edited:
Easter is my favorite Greek holiday and the tradition I like the most is roasting the lamb on the spit!

The process for my family in past years is to purchase the lamb locally (with head of course!) on good Friday. Keep it packed on ice and then marinate it the next morning (good Saturday) get it attached spit (which is a fun process, LOL) then get it ready to go for Easter morning.

Then the best part happens! Family gets together at 7AM Easter morning and then the fire gets started and the slow cooking process takes place until lunch is served at around 1PM. Most people stop by to grab a fresh piece of lamb off the spit. Most times it does not make it to the table :)

Why-Do-We-Roast-Lamb-at-Easter-720x480.jpeg
 
Easter is my favorite Greek holiday and the tradition I like the most is roasting the lamb on the spit!

The process for my family in past years is to purchase the lamb locally (with head of course!) on good Friday. Keep it packed on ice and then marinate it the next morning (good Saturday) get it attached spit (which is a fun process, LOL) then get it ready to go for Easter morning.

Then the best part happens! Family gets together at 7AM Easter morning and then the fire gets started and the slow cooking process takes place until lunch is served at around 1PM. Most people stop by to grab a fresh piece of lamb off the spit. Most times it does not make it to the table :)

View attachment 32
Oh wow! Head and all? When we used to do the
Easter is my favorite Greek holiday and the tradition I like the most is roasting the lamb on the spit!

The process for my family in past years is to purchase the lamb locally (with head of course!) on good Friday. Keep it packed on ice and then marinate it the next morning (good Saturday) get it attached spit (which is a fun process, LOL) then get it ready to go for Easter morning.

Then the best part happens! Family gets together at 7AM Easter morning and then the fire gets started and the slow cooking process takes place until lunch is served at around 1PM. Most people stop by to grab a fresh piece of lamb off the spit. Most times it does not make it to the table :)

View attachment 32
I hear you. Sounds so similar to what we used to do, minus the head. My husband, his dad, and his brothers used to turn the spit by hand until we got a motorized spit. My husband really misses that tradition, but after losing his father, his brother, and his other brother moved away...well, you get the picture. It's tough having to let some traditions go as we age. We've been making new traditions though. Thank God.
 
Lent for Orthodox Christians begins on Monday (March 15th), which got me thinking about Easter. I am curious - what are some of your favorite Easter traditions? For me, going to church on Saturday night and bringing home the candle, breaking our Lenten fast with a nice meal after church (usually pastitso, kouloura, olives, feta cheese, and a red Easter egg), and eating lamb the next day, are some of my favorites.
Easter is the Greek Super Bow land the lamb on the spit is the MVP!

My favorite tradition in my family is gathering the men (women are welcome they just don't want to hang out with us at 7am ha) building the fire and watching the lamb cook while eating mezedakia, listening to music and laughing. We used to manually turn the spit and take turns doing so back in the day but now we have a motorized spit so we just pretend to be working hard. To me it's a great way of gathering multi generations together to spend time together and not on our phones.
 
Easter is the Greek Super Bow land the lamb on the spit is the MVP!

My favorite tradition in my family is gathering the men (women are welcome they just don't want to hang out with us at 7am ha) building the fire and watching the lamb cook while eating mezedakia, listening to music and laughing. We used to manually turn the spit and take turns doing so back in the day but now we have a motorized spit so we just pretend to be working hard. To me it's a great way of gathering multi generations together to spend time together and not on our phones.
Greek superbowl I LOVE that haha
So true at my house! There are always at least 5 men standing around 1 lamb watching it cook haha
 
As for timing, I know Orthodox Easter has to be after the first full moon after the Jewish Passover. Western Easter simply has to be after the Equinox. Sometimes they're on the same day. However, if you listen to the Greek comedian Basile, he said it's because it enables the Easter Bunny to buy half price candy.
Thank you!! That's hilarious lol, I will check him out
 
Easter is my favorite Greek holiday and the tradition I like the most is roasting the lamb on the spit!

The process for my family in past years is to purchase the lamb locally (with head of course!) on good Friday. Keep it packed on ice and then marinate it the next morning (good Saturday) get it attached spit (which is a fun process, LOL) then get it ready to go for Easter morning.

Then the best part happens! Family gets together at 7AM Easter morning and then the fire gets started and the slow cooking process takes place until lunch is served at around 1PM. Most people stop by to grab a fresh piece of lamb off the spit. Most times it does not make it to the table :)

View attachment 32
Mmmmm looks so yummy! Reminds me of what my uncle used to do every summer except he'd add a couple more lambs lol my family is huge
 
My favorite tradition is coming together with my family and making tsoureki. It's so hands on and I love to get the whole family on board (even if we mess up the recipe lol)

tsoureki.JPG
 
  • Like
Reactions: StamatiaMaria
Dying the eggs red and making tsoureki is definitely a family favorite!
 
  • Like
Reactions: voula_slat

Greek Wedding Traditions Roundup

I am helping someone plan her Greek wedding. I wanted to make a list of all the traditions we need to keep in time for the big day. Did I miss anything?

The Stolisma

The wedding day begins with the ritual of 'Stolisma,' where the bride and groom are prepared separately by their families. It's a moment filled with emotion, songs, and blessings, setting the tone for the day. I had honestly never heard of this. Do people still do it?

The Krevati

An amusing tradition is the 'Krevati' (bed making), where family and friends gather to decorate the couple's future bed with baby items, symbolizing fertility and a happy family life. Money is also often thrown on the bed for good luck and prosperity.

The Crowning (Stefana)

One of the most iconic rituals during the ceremony is the exchange of crowns or 'Stefana.' I believe they need to buy the crowns they want in advance?

Koufeta

No Greek wedding would be complete without 'Koufeta'—sugar-coated almonds given to guests as wedding favors. These bittersweet treats represent the ups and downs of married life and are shared in odd numbers to symbolize indivisibility and shared life.

List of Cretan Dances?

I will be attending a Cretan wedding and am curious about the traditional Cretan dances! I know the dances are slightly different and I want to learn some. I don't know the names of the dances so that I can look them up. I did some research, though. Are any of these dances common at these weddings?
  • Pentozali
  • Sousta
  • Siganos
  • Chaniotis
There's a dance the wedding party typically does in Crete. Which dance is that?

Where did plate smashing come from?

When Greeks feel happy and are dancing and have a good time, they've been known to smash plates. I've seen it! It's not just a tourist thing - but they don't do it much because I am sure they won't want to smash their expensive dish wear.

I was just at a wedding and they had purchased plates to smash - so basically they were cheap throwaway plates that actually smashed really well. I almost wonder if they were made for the purpose...

It got me thinking - where did this tradition come from? Does anyone know?

Advice about making Greek coffee

I've developed a fascination with Greek culture and cuisine, and one aspect I'm particularly eager to explore is Greek coffee. I've heard that it's a unique and delicious brew, but I'm not quite sure how to make it at home.

I understand that Greek coffee is traditionally prepared using a special pot called a briki, but beyond that, I'm a bit lost. What type of coffee grounds should I use, and how finely should they be ground? Are there any specific brands or blends that are favored for making Greek coffee?

I'm also curious about the brewing process itself. Is there a particular technique for achieving that rich, foamy texture that Greek coffee is known for? And what about serving suggestions? Are there any traditional accompaniments or customs that I should be aware of?

Thanks in advance!

Tips for Learning and Teaching Greek

I know how to speak Greek okay, but I am not great at it. I want to brush up on my skills, and I also want to teach some of my family members. I am good enough at it to the learn the basics. I am looking for advice, but I've also compiled some ideas:

1. Spend an extended period of time in Greece

There’s no better way to learn Greek than to immerse yourself in the language and culture of Greece. If you have the opportunity, consider spending an extended time in Greece, studying or working, taking a sabbatical, or just exploring the country. Living in Greece can help you understand the nuances of the language, such as the different accents, dialects, and slang that are used. You’ll also have the chance to practice your Greek with locals, watch Greek TV or films, and read Greek books or newspapers. I would imagine this is the best way to learn fast!

2. Use a language program

If you can’t travel to Greece or you prefer a more structured approach to learning Greek, consider using a language program. There are many language programs available online or in your local area, ranging from self-paced courses to interactive classes. Some popular language programs for Greek include Rosetta Stone, Duolingo, and Pimsleur. From what I understand these are all great options and I can learn at my own pace.

3. Take classes

Taking classes is another excellent way to learn Greek, especially if you prefer face-to-face interaction and feedback. You can find Greek language classes in community colleges, universities, language schools, or private tutors. Taking classes can help you improve your Greek skills, such as listening, speaking, reading, and writing. You’ll have a teacher who can guide you through the learning process, answer your questions, and give you homework or assignments that challenge you. You’ll also have classmates who share your passion for Greek and can practice with you.

4. Find ways to immerse yourself outside of Greece

Even if you can’t go to Greece or attend classes, you can still immerse yourself in Greek in your daily life. One way is to find Greek-speaking communities or events in your area, such as cultural centers, festivals, or meetups. You can also use online resources to connect with Greek speakers, such as language exchange websites, social media groups, or chat apps. Listening to Greek music, watching Greek videos or podcasts, or reading Greek literature can also help you familiarize yourself with the sounds and patterns of the language.

Honestly, I plan to try all 4 - whatever I can do. I think it will all help.
Share and discuss Greek traditions related to Greek weddings, christenings, dance & holidays!

WorldwideGreeks.com is a free online forum community where people can discuss Greek food, travel, traditions, history and mythology.
Join Worldwide Greeks here!

JOIN COMMUNITY FOR FREE

LOGIN TO YOUR ACCOUNT
Back
Top