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Paska (bread)

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Paska is an Easter bread eaten in Eastern European countries including Poland, Ukraine and Slovakia. It is also eaten in other countries with immigrant populations from Eastern Europe, including the US, Canada and the UK. Paska is made with butter, eggs, and sugar. An egg and water mixture is used as a glaze.

The Christian faithful in many Eastern Orthodox countries eat this bread during Easter. Christian symbolism is associated with features of paska type breads. The inside of paska can be a swirl of yellow and white that is said to represent the risen Christ in Christian faith, while the white represents the Holy Spirit. A version is made with maraschino cherries added to symbolize royal jewels in honor of the resurrection of Jesus.[1]

Paska is eaten with "hrudka", also called syrek, a bland sweet custard similar to cheese made from separated eggs and milk and beets mixed with horseradish (chren/hrin) and keilbasa (in Polish) or kovbasa (in Ukrainian).

Paska in the USA

Paska is believed to have been brought to the United States by Menonites, and is served in the Midwest along with other Eastern European foods such as pirogi and keilbasa sausages.[2][3]

The American paska is made from a mixture of flour, cream, sugar, eggs, butter and yeast cakes. A cheese spread made from cottage cheese and egg yolks is used. White raisins used in the U.S. are said to symbolize the "living bread coming down from heaven".[4] The bread is traditionally eaten at Easter.[5]

See also

References

  1. Joan Halmo Celebrating the church year with young children Liturgical Press, 1988 ISBN 0814615805, 9780814615805 159 pages page 43
  2. James M. Anderson [Ethnic groups in Michigan] Michigan Ethnic Heritage Studies Center Ethnos Press, 1983 University of Michigan 301 pages page 71
  3. Carolyn Louise Moore Zeisset A Mennonite Heritage: A Genealogy of the Suderman and Wiens Families, 1800-1975 Zeisset, 1975 University of Wisconsin - Madison 348 pages
  4. Lisa A. Alzo Slovak Pittsburg Arcadia Publishing, 2006 ISBN 0738549088, 9780738549088 127 pages page 114
  5. Frederic Gomes Cassidy, Joan Houston Hall Dictionary of American regional English Harvard University Press, 2002 ISBN 0674008847, 9780674008847 1040 pages page 48
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