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Christmas Eve around the world

2015/12/24 11:03:08    本站原创     【字体:

Bulgaria

In Bulgaria, the meal consists of an odd number of lenten dishes in compliance with the rules of fasting. They are usually the traditional sarma, bob chorba (bean soup), fortune pita (pastry with a fortune in it), stuffed peppers, nuts.The meal is often accompanied with wine or Bulgaria's traditionalalcoholic beverage rakia.

France

In French-speaking places, Réveillon is a long dinner eaten on Christmas Eve.

Italy

While other Christian families throughout the world celebrate the Christmas Eve meal with various meats, Italians (especially Sicilians) celebrate the traditional Catholic "Feast of the Seven Fishes" which was historically served after a 24-hour fasting period. Christmas fasting is no longer a popular custom, some Italian-Americans still enjoy a meatless Christmas Eve feast and attend the Midnight Mass. In various cultures, a festive dinner is traditionally served for the family and close friends in attendance, when the first star (usually Sirius) arrives on the sky.

Russia, Ukraine and Lithuania

In Russia, Ukraine, and Lithuania, a traditional meatless 12-dishes Christmas Eve Supper is served on Christmas Eve before opening gifts. This is known as the "Holy Meal" (Kūčios in Lithuania). The table is spread with a white cloth symbolic of the swaddling clothes the Child Jesus was wrapped in, and a large white candle stands in the center of the table symbolizing Christ the Light of the World. Next to it is a round loaf of bread symbolizing Christ Bread of Life. Hay is often displayed either on the table or as a decoration in the room, reminiscent of the manger in Bethlehem. The twelve dishes (which differ by nationality or region) symbolize the Twelve Apostles.

The Holy Meal was a common Eastern Orthodox tradition in the Russian Empire, but during the era of the Soviet Union it was greatly discouraged as a result of the official atheism of the former regime. It is coming back in Russia and continues to be popular in Ukraine.

The main attributes of Holy Meal in Ukraine are kutia, a poppy seed, honey and wheat dish, and uzvar, a drink made from reconstituted dried fruits. Other typical dishes are borscht, Varenyky, and dishes made of fish, phaseolus and cabbage.

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