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Easter Food Traditions

Easter long weekend is almost upon us. Whether you celebrate this holiday within the Christian faith, as part of the Jewish Passover or just as a special time with family and friends, food will be part of the celebrations. There are many different food traditions enjoyed throughout the world. Here are a few:

Hot Cross Buns

A hot cross bun is a rich spiced tea bun. Sometimes referred to as Easter Cakes or Biscuit. These are associated with Easter and in particular Good Friday. It began as an English tradition introduced when a London by-law forbade the sale of these buns except on Good Friday, Christmas and at burials! The spicy bun filled with raisins and orange peel is now enjoyed all over the world. Early Saxons associated the bun with the goddess Esotre from which Easter gets its name. After being converted to Christianity they placed a cross on the bun before cooking.


This became the meal of choice in America to celebrate Easter. Lamb which is served in many European countries, was not easily available to the American settlers. After they slaughtered the pigs in the fall ,the curing process would begin. These hams were normally ready to eat around Easter. Serve this classic American dish spicy or with a sweet glaze.


In ancient times lamb symbolized Spring. It also has strong Christian symbolism as Christian’s name Jesus, The Lamb of God. Lamb is also one of the main celebratory dishes during the Jewish Passover. Cook the leg of lamb over an open grill or in a Weber type oven.In Greece where Easter is the most important holiday ( even more so than Christmas) a spit with lamb is always featured on the menu .


Eggs have always symbolized rebirth and revival and closely associated with Easter. Many countries prepare eggs on Good Friday and serve these on Easter Sunday. The hard-boiled eggs are prettily decorated.

As the years have gone by the introduction of chocolate and sweet Easter eggs has gained momentum. Let’s face it what would Easter be without Easter eggs!

The now-famous Easter Egg roll that takes place on the South Lawns at the Oval House has become an American presidential tradition. Children roll over 14 000 decorated hard-boiled eggs over the lawns with long spoons.


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This is a traditional Easter beverage in the Netherlands. It is similar to Eggnog and made from eggs, sugar, and brandy. The Dutch drink it as an apéritif (before dinner) at Easter.

Cape Malay Fish

This is a popular South Africa Easter dish served in the Cape Malay community. It is a cooked pickled fish with hints of curry flavor. Served Cold it has become part of any Malay Easter buffet.

Simnel Cake

This is a fruit cake which has a layer of flat marzipan on top decorated with 11 marzipan balls. The 11 balls represent the 12 apostles (minus Judas). This cake is a staple dessert in English and Irish homes.


In Cyprus, a special Easter bread is prepared on Good Friday and served on Easter Sunday. They fill the bread pockets with raisins and cheese.

Bialy Barszcze

This is a popular Easter dish made in Poland. The Polish people take the ingredients including Sausages, Eggs, and Butter to church on Easter Sunday for the blessing. The white borscht is then prepared at home for a later celebratory feast.

Happy Easter .May you your family and friends enjoy a special festive time filled with fun and laughter and most importantly of all GOOD FOOD!

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