• Fri. Sep 30th, 2022

Traditional Easter foods from around the world

ByAnjali Phagami Pun

Apr 6, 2022

Easter is the most important festival in the Christian calendar. It celebrates Jesus rising from the dead, three days after he was executed. Hence, Easter is a very significant date on the Christian calendar. However, Easter falls on a different date each year. It is a time for those who celebrate it to be with family, friends, and loved ones. And what better way to spend time with your favorite people than to stuff your face with delicious and traditional Easter meals? Easter is simply around the corner and every person is looking for very easy Easter recipes concepts. Here are my personal favorite Easter foods from around the world and why we eat them.

Easter foods around the world

1. Easter foods from around the world-Hot Cross Buns

Easter foods from around the world-hot cross buns
<hot cross buns>

Hot cross buns, the English bread made famous by a nursery rhyme, is an Easter tradition. A hot cross bun is a spiced sweet bun usually made with fruit, marked with a cross on the top, and has been traditionally eaten on Good Friday in countries such as the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, India, New Zealand, South Africa, Canada, and some other parts of the Americas, including the United States.

Ingredients

  • Two packages of dry yeast
  • 2 cups warm whole milk
  • Two eggs
  • 1/3 cup butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 6 to 7 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup dried currants
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1-1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar (for icing)
  • 4 to 6 teaspoons of whole milk (for icing)

Method

  1. Firstly, in a small bowl, dissolve yeast in warm milk. In a large bowl, combine eggs, butter, sugar, salt, spices, yeast mixture, and 3 cups flour; beat on medium speed until smooth.
  2. Secondly, turn onto a floured surface; knead until dough is smooth and elastic, 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease the top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
  3. Then, pound down the dough. Turn onto a lightly floured surface; divide and shape into 30 balls. Place 2 in. apart on greased baking sheets. Cover with kitchen towels; let rise in a warm place until doubled, 30-45 minutes. Preheat oven.
  4. Using a sharp knife, cut a cross on top of each bun. In a small bowl, whisk egg yolk and water; brush over tops. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool slightly.
  5. Finally, for the icing, in a small bowl, mix confectioners’ sugar and enough milk to reach desired consistency. Pipe a cross on top of each bun. Serve warm.

2. Easter foods from around the world- Roasted Lamb

Easter foods from around the world-roasted lamb
<roasted lamb>

Lamb carries with it certain religious connotations, with the sacrificial lamb remembered in celebrations of both Passover and Easter. Because of this significance roast lamb has become firmly entrenched as the Easter food around the world, long predating the vast, golden turkeys of Christmas.

Ingredients

  • 2.5kg leg of lamb
  • 2 bushy rosemary sprigs, leaves finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 lemon
  • 4 anchovy fillets, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 carrot, halved
  • 1 celery stalk
  • 2 onions, unpeeled and halved
  • 250ml chicken stock
  • 1-2 tbsp redcurrant jelly

Method

  1. Take the lamb out of the fridge and all its packaging at least 1 hour before you want to cook it.
  2. Secondly, preheat the oven. Make deep incisions all over the lamb with a small, sharp knife. In a mortar and pestle, bash the rosemary, garlic, lemon zest, and anchovies to a rough paste, then stir in the olive oil. Push this into the incisions and rub any excess paste all over the lamb.
  3. In a large roasting tin, place the carrot, celery, and onions cut-side down. Set the lamb on top, season with some flaky sea salt and black pepper then roast for 20 minutes. Lower the oven and roast for another 1 hour 15 minutes (or about 25-30 minutes per kg).
  4. Then, take the lamb out of the oven, transfer it to a plate or board, loosely cover with foil, and rest for 30 minutes.
  5. Furthermore, for the gravy, place the roasting tin over medium heat. Add the stock and stir up all the sticky bits. Pass the gravy through a sieve into a small saucepan, pressing any excess juices out of the vegetables. Stir in the redcurrant jelly (adding more or less depending on how sweet you like your gravy) then simmer briskly for 3-4 minutes until you have a glossy gravy.
  6. Finally, carve the lamb and serve with the gravy, salsa verde, braised lettuce and peas, and boulangère potatoes.

3. Easter foods from around the world-Torta pascualina

<Torta pascualina>

Torta pascualina is a savory pie made with spinach, ricotta, and whole eggs that cook as the pie is baked. Originally from Liguria, in northwest Italy, it’s now popular all over the peninsula being one of the most popular easter foods around the world. The most important aspect of the torta pasqualina is the eggs baked inside. When you cut the pie you should see the egg sliced through the middle in what’s a beautiful and festive effect.  This traditional Easter dish is a favorite of both Argentine and Uruguayan families.

Ingredients

  • 800g of spinach
  • 500g of ricotta
  • 6 eggs
  • 2 sheets of puff pastry
  • salt
  • black pepper

Method

  1. Firstly, put the spinach directly into a large saucepan with a lid and turn the heat on low, cover them and leave them to wilt for 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow the spinach to cool completely.
  2. When the spinach is cool, put it into a blender and whizz for a few seconds to chop it into small pieces. Then, in a bowl, mix the spinach with the ricotta cheese. Season with salt and pepper to taste and mix in 1 egg.
  3. Then, butter in a deep 20cm cake tin and line it with one of the sheets of puff pastry. Pour in the spinach mixture and transfer the tin to the fridge to chill for about 30 minutes.
  4. Carefully make four large holes in the spinach mixture with a spoon, big enough to take an entire egg each. Then break 1 egg into each of the holes.
  5. Place the second sheet of pastry puff carefully over the top of the mixture, and use a sharp knife to score a cross in the pastry over the eggs so that when you come to cut the pie you will cut the eggs in half.
  6. However, make a small hole in the center of the pie with the knife, paint one final layer of beaten egg on the top, and bake it in the oven for 1 hour.
  7. Allow the pie to cool completely, and then cut into eight portions using the cross on the top as a guide.

4. Easter foods from around the world-The kulich

Easter foods from around the world-the kulich
<the kulich>

Kulich is delicious sweet bread commonly eaten in Russia on Easter day. However, smilar in shape and flavor to panettone, kulich is packed with fragrant spices, dried fruits, and citrus peel. Moreover, in Eastern European countries like Serbia, Belarus, Ukraine, Georgia, and parts of Russia, Orthodox Christians dine on kulich, a tall cylindrical cake topped with white frosting. During Easter services, the kulich is often decorated with flowers and blessed by a priest.

Ingredients

  • 450g of strong white bread flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1-1/2 tsp mixed spice
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 50g of butter
  • 50g of caster sugar
  • 14g of fast-action dried yeast
  • 210ml of milk
  • 1 beaten egg
  • 100g of mixed dried fruits
  • 25g of citrus peel, mixed
  • 100g of icing sugar (for icing)
  • 1/2 lemon, juice only (icing)
  • 8 cherries
  • almonds

Method

  1. Firstly, butter the tins well and line each with some buttered baking paper sieve the flour, salt, ground mixed spice, and cinnamon into a large mixing bowl and rub in the butter using your fingertips. Make a well in the center of the mixture and add the sugar and yeast.
  2. Secondly, add the beaten egg and tepid milk to the flour and mix together to form a soft, pliable dough.
  3. Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured work surface. Carefully work the mixed dried fruit and mixed peel into the dough until well combined. Knead lightly for 5 minutes, or until smooth and elastic.
  4. Shape the dough into a ball and place it into a buttered mixing bowl, then cover with a clean tea towel and set aside in a warm place for 1 hour to prove.
  5. Place the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and divide it into 6 equal pieces. Roll each piece into a ball, then roll them into a long cylinder shape and put them into the buttered and paper-lined tins. Cover the tins with a tea towel and set them aside to rise for 25–30 minutes.
  6. Turn the Kulich out of the tins onto a wire cooling rack and allow it to cool completely before icing.
  7. To make the icing, add the lemon juice to the icing sugar, spoon by spoon until you have a thick but runny icing that will cover the kulich buns and dribble a little down the sides. Spoon the icing over kulich and scatter the glacé cherries, toasted almonds, and sprinkles over the top.

5. Easter foods from around the world-Bun and cheese

Easter foods from around the world-bun and cheese
<bun and cheese>

The Easter holiday in Jamaica is marked by the enjoyment and delight of Easter Bun and Cheese. The bun is eaten with cheese, a combination that is now an integral part of the island’s cuisine. Bun and Cheese are just one of the easter foods from around the world adapted from other cultures for Jamaican tastes. Moreover, the buns, made with spices and raisins, are cut in two and eaten with slices of cheese, usually cheddar.

Ingredients

  • 2 ounces unsalted butter
  • 1 Bottle Dragon or Guinness Stout
  • 120 ml Fernandes Cherry Brandy
  • 1 Tablespoon Guava Jam
  • 1 teaspoon mixed Essence
  • ½ Tablespoon browning
  • 1 egg
  • 200 gms brown sugar
  • 454 gms all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • one tsp allspice
  • 1 Tsp baking powder
  • 115 grams chopped mixed peel
  • 115 grams raisins
  • 1 Can tastee cheese

Method

  1. Firstly, soak the raisins in the cherry brandy overnight to fully hydrate the fruit.
  2. Secondly, preheat the oven and place the rack in the middle of the range.
  3. Grease a loaf pan and set it aside for later.
  4. Mix flour, nutmeg, salt, cinnamon, allspice, and baking powder in one large bowl.
  5. Mix the butter, stout, guava jam, mixed essence, browning, and egg in a separate large bowl.
  6. Blend the sugar into the mixture until fully dissolved.
  7. Slowly add the dry mix to the wet mixture until fully incorporated.
  8. Fold in the mixed peel and soaked raisins, making sure to distribute them within the batter evenly.
  9. Pour into the loaf pan, place in the center of the oven, bake for 45 minutes, and test by poking a toothpick into the loaf; if it removes cleanly with no batter on end, it’s ready. If not, bake for another 15 minutes and test again.
  10. Once the loaf is ready, remove it from the oven and place it on a cooling rack for 20 minutes before serving.
  11. Slice and serve with a slice of Tastee cheese and enjoy.
  12. For the glaze, using a saucepan dissolve the jam in the water until syrup consistency, then brush over the top of the warm loaf while cooling.

6. Nasi Kuning

Easter foods from around the world-nasi kuning
<nasi kuning>

Nasi Kuning is yellow rice and is eaten in Indonesia during festivals; anniversaries, weddings, birthdays, or holy parties of any kind. It is one of the easter foods in Indonesia. Moreover, the rice is flavored with Santen (coconut cream), turmeric, salam, pandan, lemongrass, and salt. 

Ingredients

  • 350 grams of pandan rice
  • 1/3 block of coconut cream or 300 ml of coconut milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 4-5 leaves lemon leaves
  • 1 pandan leaf
  • one lemongrass
  • 1 Asian bay leaf
  • water

Method

  1. Firstly, wash the rice three times
  2. Secondly, grind the turmeric- with a bit of coconut milk into a yellow soup
  3. Add in the pan (from an electric steamer) the rice, the ground turmeric mix, the rest of the coconut cream or coconut milk, the leaves, lemongrass, one long pandan leaf, and half a teaspoon of salt.
  4. Add water until the fluid is one phalange above the rice.
  5. Place the bowl in the steamer and steam on a regular setting (takes about 20 minutes).
  6. When done leave the rice in the rice cooker for another 20 – 30 minutes.
  7. Take out the leaves
  8. Now scoop it through until all the coconut milk is well distributed.
  9. Finally, add it into a mold, place it on a plate and decorate.

7. Dyed Greek easter eggs

easter egg
<greek easter eggs>

Dying the Easter eggs is the brightest symbol of Greek Easter and making these vibrant and colorful Greek Easter eggs every year on Holy Thursday, always makes me realize that it’s Easter time. Furthermore, easter eggs symbolize the blood and sacrifice of Christ, Greek Easter is rarely or ever celebrated without them. Finally, the player who successfully cracks the eggs of the other players in the ‘winner’ is said to be granted luck for the rest of the year.

Ingredients

  • 12 eggs
  • 1 package of red egg dye powder
  • 6 cups of warm water
  • 1/3 of a cup vinegar
  • olive oil, for shinning

Method

  1. Firstly, to prepare these colorful Greek Easter eggs, start by boiling the eggs. Wash thoroughly the eggs and place them gently in an empty pot. Add enough cold water to cover the eggs by 3-4 cm.
  2. Secondly, season the water with a good pinch of salt and bring it to a boil. If you like your eggs hard-boiled, but juicy at the same time, boil the eggs for 6 minutes.
  3. Remove the pot from the stove and place the eggs under cold running water for about 1 minute to stop the cooking process. Crack one egg to check if you are happy with the result.
  4. After the eggs cool down, start preparing the dye for your Greek Easter eggs. Place the warm water and the dye powder in a large glass bowl and stir, until dissolved. Add the vinegar and stir to combine. Place carefully the eggs in the bowl and set aside for 2-3 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon on a rack over some kitchen paper and let them dry for about 40 minutes.
  5. Finally, to give a little shine to your dyed Greek Easter eggs, wipe them with a paper towel with a little olive oil.

Interested in another interesting egg recipe for Easter? Click here.

Looking for another traditional food recipe? Check out our blog post about Kookoo Sabzi – The Traditional Persian New Year’s Dish