Easter! Easter! Easter!
For us , kids of the communist era in Russia, it was never about religion, but about having a day with the whole family and eating very special things.
When we were young children, for me and my brother Easter always meant visiting the cemetery with our parents and then going to Gran’s and have a lots of yummy gifts like Easter eggs and Paskas (Russian Easter breads).
Of course they were real Easter eggs, not like the ones made from chocolate like in Europe . My grandma would dye boiled chicken eggs in different colors ; my favorite was always red and blue. You can buy eggs with white shell in Russia, which makes it easy to have many different bright and pastel colors. Even in school at home economics lessons we were taught how to dye egg using natural dyes like onion skin, and how to make a pattern on the shell of the egg by boiling it wrapped tight in a nylon sock with a leaf of parsley inside stuck to one side of the egg. And of course painting the empty egg shells by hand was the most fun.
So my grandma would always make enough colourful eggs for all her children and grandchildren. She would arrange the eggs on a plate with Paska . When everyone arrived we would start a feast , the kids would play all together: brothers , sisters, cousins . At the end of the day everyone will receive a gift from grandma: Easter eggs and Paskas. In some regions of Russia they would call it Kulich, but we always called it Paska . It makes sense Easter in Russian is Pas-ha . If you think about it, some languages have very similar sounding words, like Passover for example or Paques in french. So why call it Kulich, when Paska sounds just right for the occasion!
Though I was not brought up religious, I still like to make my traditional specials at this time of the year. And here you are: Easter eggs and Paska!