Friday, 17 April 2009

Polish Easter

Polish: Wielkanoc
Kashubian: Jastrë
English: Easter
Albanian: Pashkët
Mokshan: Очижи
Lithuanian: Velykos
Georgian: აღდგომა
Ossetian: Куадзæн
Swabian: Auschdra
Croatian: Uskrs

Easter breakfast is the most important thing about celebrating Easter in Poland. Everyone wakes up very early and participates at Rezurekcja (6 o'clock a.m. Holy Mass); the naive one who plans to be lazy and sleep longer rather won't be able to, cause at this time you will hear everywhere clangor of special instruments, petards, bells and so on. After that, at least in my family, men prepare and decorate breakfast table while women bake white sausage, season żurek and decorate meals. However, almost everything is already done. Pisanki are painted, żur is already sour, babka is waiting to be served... A culinary must are: żurek, sour rye soup (eaten with chunks of white sausage and boiled eggs, often served in cored little breads), baked white sausage, eggs and babka with mazurek, two kinds of cakes, a flat and a tall one. Often people serve pascha, curd cheese dessert, and chałka, hallah bread. There is actually no other meal this day, people just sit together, start eating breakfast, talk, spend lazy time, heat resting żurek and kiełbasa for dinner and leave the table only to cut some more bread or to boil new portion of tea.

see also: pictures of my family's 2008 Easter breakfast dishes

This year my family's Easter menu was:

* żurek - sour rye soup (for more details, visit the previous post). Sometimes can be replaced by horseradish soup, sometimes people cook a fusion of both: a delicious horseradish żur. The main thing is a sour taste!)
* pieczona biała kiełbasa - baked white sausage
* rolada szpinakowa - spinach & smoked salmon & horseradish cheese roll
* chicken-vegetable (pea, bean, corn, radish etc.) salad
* ser jajeczny - egg cheese (eggs cooked with milk until curdles; looks like cheese, tastes like eggs, traditionally eaten with horseradish sauce)
* jajka - hard-boiled eggs (plain or marinated in beetroot juice) with mayonnaise
* homemade bread
* chałka - hallah
* puff pastry poppy seed pigtails
* babka (egg-yeast tall traditional cake, this year with coffee flavour and coffee icing)
* mazurek (the flat cake; this year with Easter rabbit)
* cooked (yes! not baked! just cooked!) cheesecake with poppy seed-coconut roll cake
* pear-jelly-biscuit cake
* homemade butter
* ćwikła (horseradish with beets), horseradish sauce, red and black kaviar
* sos tatarski - tartar sauce (mayonnaise, sour cream, horseradish, chopped pickled sour cucumbers, capers, champignons, hard-boiled eggs, chives, lemon juice)
* slices of fresh vegetables, homemade pickled mushrooms
* homemade (preserved) cherry juice (kompot wisniowy)

bread, tartar sauce, eggs and egg cheese:

beet-dyed-eggs and egg cheese:

mayonnaise eggs, homemade butter, spinach roll:

spinach roll:

chicken-vegetable salad with duck-egg on the top, sauces and kaviar:

mushrooms and garden cress:



pear-jelly-biscuit cake:

raspberry pascha:


cooked cheesecake hidden in poppy seed-coconut roll:

An important ingredient of eastern breakfast is a plate full of differrent sausages, just like these

Traditional Easter decoration are: garden cress and oat grass, box twigs, willow twigs with catkins, daffodils, myrtle, little lambs (symbol of Jesus Christ) and obviously pisanki, which are eggs painted, dyed, scratched, decorated with bulrush pith or painted with melted wax


Agata Chmielewska (Kurczak) said...

co to za ser jajeczny? pierwszy raz się z nim spotykam

Ewa said...

przepis podać?

Unknown said...

Wow Ewa, as I prepare for Easter here in Chicago (US) for my boyfriend's family I have to say that your spread of Easter food is very impressive!! They are of Polish origin, and I wanted to do some more authentic foods for our Easter lunch. I got some really good ideas from your blog. Thank you for the beautiful pictures and descriptions.
-- Carolyn R.

Unknown said...

This Easter table is so beautiful and mouth watering. Nice job! Ester is Husvet in hungarian language.

Ewa said...

@Carolyn: I am so glad you got an inspiration from my blog :) What do you prepare for this Easter?

@Eva: thanks :) I wonder what do Hungarians prepare for this day? Szervusz!