Easter is the most significant religious celebration in the Greek Orthodox faith. It begins with the Lenten fast seven weeks before Easter…this time of fasting is to cleanse the body and spirit.
Easter preparations begin on Holy Thursday when the eggs are dyed red, representing the blood of Christ. Women in Greek families are busy baking tsourekia and koulouria. The house is filled with aromas of mahlepi and warm tsourekia.
Good Friday is the holiest day of the Easter calendar. A day of mourning.
On Holy Saturday, the Mayeritsa (Easter soup) is being cooked and the house prepares for the coming feast. After the Resurrection service families go home and enjoy a late dinner of Mayeritsa and breaking of the fast.
Easter Sunday is a day spent with family and friends and every soul feasts on lamb, usually cooked on the spit. Everyone always loves the part where the red eggs are cracked. From ancient times, the egg has been a symbol of the renewal of life. The message of the red eggs is victory over death and Christ breaking free from the tomb. As a child I just wanted to have the strongest egg.
‘Everything a butcher needs to know about Greek Easter’ article in Australian Meat News, March 2013
Here are the detailed recipe sheets…