Thursday, April 21, 2011

ICLW + a Greek Orthodox Easter

Welcome ICLW! Thank you for stopping by my blog. If you would like to know a little about my IF Journey please click on the page above. I'm sure my tale will leave you with a smile after reading my 6 years battle of infertility and miscarriage.

Most Easters I remember fondly, but like Christmases gone by, Easter was also a reminder of the child I didn't have. Invited by friends or family and surrounded by children. Children I loved but were not mine. Watching their excited faces as they opened their Easter Chocolate Egg as it crumbled to their feet and smothered their cute faces. The rampant noise they made as they played with the new Autumn falling leaves. I now have that child and I look forward to his experience of Easter. My son will have his chocolate, but more so he will learn and acknoweldge its true meaning - of Christ, of Resurrection and of Christianity.

My post is simply a recipe and some humble traditions of a Greek Orthodox Easter.

Greek Easter is a week long celebration. There are no frisky bunnies in my household. Instead, there are many beautiful moments with my mother, godmother and sister dying eggs, baking bread and cleaning intestines! Loving memories of us being together gossiping and discussing life. One part I absolutely adore is dying the eggs particularly because of its meaning. The egg is seen by followers of Christianity as a symbol of resurrection. Easter eggs are dyed red to represent the blood of Christ, shed on the Cross.

The hard shell of the egg symbolises the sealed Tomb of Christ—the cracking of which symbolises his resurrection from the dead. We crack each others eggs on Easter Day and the person whose egg is still intact will have good luck for the rest of the year.

Another awesome tradition we Greeks have is cooking this amazing soup. I remember the day when I first started dating Shooter (who is from an Anglo-Celtic background) I had invited him to my family's Easter celebration. His mouth was watery when he entered the backyard and smelled the lamb roasting on the spit and the yalaktobouriko sweets baking in the oven. However he soon realised that in order to be welcomed to The Family and eventually as my spouse he would need to try the "special soup". We all hung to the moment he put spoon to mouth. Surprisingly he loved it, because in Scottish tradition, haggas resembles this soup dish.

Magiritsa Soup - (μαγειρίτσα) is a Greek soup made from lamb offal. Traditionally it is eaten to break the fast of the Greek Orthodox Great Lent, the 40 days before Easter. Its role and ingredients result from its association with the roasted lamb traditionally served at the Paschal meal. In its traditional form, Magiritsa simply consists of all the offal removed from the lamb before roasting.


• 2 lb lamb heart, liver, lungs (pluck) and other organs.

• 3/4 cup rice

• 1 bunch anise and barley

• 1 lb spring onions

• 3 eggs

• 2 tbsp butter

• Lemon juice of 3 lemons

• Salt and pepper to taste


• Boil the pluck and remove the foam.

• Add salt to it and let it boil for a while.

• Take it out and keep the broth.

• Cut the pluck into small pieces and place the broth in a big pot, after passing it through a strainer.

• Cut the onions and the anise/barley into small pieces, and combine them with the broth.

• Add the pluck and the butter, mix well.

• Reduce the flame and let them boil till they are almost done.

• Add the rice to it.

• Meanwhile beat eggs in a bowl very well and then add the lemon juice gradually.

• Take some of the soup and add it slowly to the sauce.

• Repeat the process several times, beating always the sauce and add the sauce to the pot, stirring the soup slowly.

Prepared by Greeks on Holy Saturday along with the next day's lamb, Magiritsa is consumed immediately after the Pascha midnight mass.


Coming Soon - my submission for the Bust a Infertility Myth Blog Challenge - National Infertility Awareness Week 24-30 April.


  1. Love all the traditions and your recipe.... Happy Easter to you and hope that your egg doesn't crack, so that you have plenty of luck over the coming year xoxo

  2. At first I was disappointed there were not Greek sweets - and then glad. I don't need the temptation a couple days before my GD test!

    I don't know if you'll be my friend after this, but I HATE lamb. I often fear the government will find out and revoke my Aussie citizenship, but it reminds me I definitely couldn't be Greek!

    I hope you have a wonderous holiday!!

  3. It all looks yummy Athena. Happy holidays.

    and thanks "for being there" meant a lot.

  4. Wow, so fascinating! We never really had any traditions at Easter OR Christmas so I'm really looking forward to creating my own for this little one so he grows up with some. No idea what I plan to do yet though! I hear ya on Easter having been hard while battling IF, I plan to write a post about this myself in the next few days. Last year was particularly hard. Wish I could be over there and hang out with your family, sounds like I'd have a ball! I definately plan to come stay one day! Just inviting myself. Hehe. Happy Easter hon! xox

  5. lovely! We make turkey Magiritsa after Thanksgiving ... I never knew it was an Easter tradition! Your little one is so lucky that you will be sharing those traditions with him.

  6. Love your blog and thank you so much for all your kind words since I started blogging... it's been lovely to start sharing this journey with you. I've awarded you a Stylish Blogger and/or Versatile blogger Award :)) Follow the link below and join in the fun this Easter :) Love always xoxo

  7. I loved reading about your Easter traditions!Hope you have a wonderful week of celebrations! xoxo

  8. Happy Easter! Those eggs are really pretty!

  9. I love reading your Wog stories... he he he.. I sometimes feel that being the white bread stealing descendants, we dont really have much tradition. I guess sauso sangers and coleslaw, camping and water skiing over easter is as close as we will get. Happy Easter Athena, Shooter & Callum, and your families..xo

  10. You're the first IF blogger I have come across who is also Orthodox!!! My husband and I have recently discovered the Orthodox church back in November and so are still catchumens, but loving all of it. Especially the depth of meaning being all the traditions. Our church is Antiochian Orthodox so it is interesting to compare some of the slight variance of custom.... My husband refuses to eat ofal but I may have to make this recipe and not tell him, it sounds really tasty :)
    I also wanted to let you know I have given you a blog award! I had to spread the information out over two posts so here are the links:

  11. Athena, just read about another blogger who states she is from a Big Fat Greek Family and I told her she has to come to your blog. She is on ICLW;

  12. I love the dying eggs Greek tradition. One of my best friends is Greek and I've dyed eggs with her for the last 2 years.
    We have a lot of family traditions and I've made sure I have kept them up with df, otherwise Easter and Christmas just doesn't feel special. I don't think id be able to eat your soup though.

    A while ago you asked if I would mind if you posted my ttc story on your blog, to be honest id feel very honoured if you did. I still love reading success stories and it still doesn't feel real that I have a baby after all it took to get here.

    P.s Caleb is just gorgeous.

  13. *callum sorry, phone auto correct.

  14. Stopping by from ICLW...

    I really loved reading this post about all your traditions. The eggs are beautiful!

  15. Happy Easter and happy ICLW week to you too! it was lovely to read about your Easter traditions!


    ICLW #131

  16. Hey I've also given you an award on my blog! Hope you had a lovely Easter!xo

  17. I didn't know that about the Easter eggs. We used to color eggs, but not just red, any color. I really like reading about different triditions! I'm Christian, but I'm not greek orthodox, (I go to an evangelical church.)
    Found you via ICLW.


Grace was in all her steps, Heaven in her Eye, In every gesture dignity and love" ~ John Milton. Thank you for your comments.