Easter. The Bulgarian Way
The fun starts on the Thursday before Easter. We don’t hide or hunt our Easter eggs. We colour them.
We wake up early, before sunrise and before work, we boil the eggs, then dip them into colourful dyes. The first egg is always red.
We use wax and watercolours. Those with a penchant for the past, when synthetic dyes had not flooded the market, use red onions, beetroot, other plants and leaves.
At midnight on Saturday we go to church. We light candles and we follow the priest three times around the church. We greet each other with ‘Hristos Voskrese!’ and ‘Voistina Voskrese!’, or ‘He has risen!’ – ‘He has truly risen!’. And then we fight with eggs. Those with the strongest eggs are called borek, borets, boryak, biyach and they are believed to stay healthy throughout the year.
We also bake a special Easter bread – kozunak – filled with butter, raisins and rum. It’s a hard one to make. This year we made a few to give to friends and colleagues, in Bishkek, and in Sofia. Here are photos!