“Greek Easter” has always been notoriously (well, if you’re Greek Orthodox) out-of-sync with the rest of Christendom. This year is exceptionally late: Greek Easter is on May 5; everybody else’s Easter is on March 31. That’s 5 weeks! Talk about Greek-time… (as opposed to on-time). Ah well, I guess we can buy Easter treats and decorations at half-price…
Except that traditional Greeks don’t really go in for the Easter bunny thing. Easter is the most important holiday in the Orthodox Church, and little bunnies and fuzzy chicks don’t enhance the drama and ritual of the celebration. The closest we get to Easter baskets is red eggs and Easter bread. The Easter bread sports a jaunty red egg baked in the middle, and sometimes the dyed eggs get wrapped in tulle and tied with a ribbon, but that’s about it.
That said, it’s helpful to remember that Greeks are also known for independent thinking – Greece was the birthplace of democracy, after all. Translated, that means anything goes – I hope my mom is not reading this! So, if you want a Greek menu and an Easter egg hunt for the little ones – go for it! (That’s what I do, anyway!)
Here are some of the options I’m considering for Greek Easter on May 5th:
Saganaki with french bread slices
Hummous with pita triangles
Wines/spirits from Greece