Maslenitsa – Ма́сленица

French-CrepesMaslenitsa is the Russian Sun Festival – a celebration of the end of winter chills and the start of Spring, of warmth,
of hope, of growth.

Maslenitsa is the last week before the onset of Great Lent. During the week of Maslenitsa, meat is already forbidden to Orthodox Christians, and it is the last week during which milk, cheese and other dairy products are permitted, leading to its name of “Cheese-fare week” (Russian: сыропустная неделя) or “Pancake week”. During Lent, meat, fish, dairy products and eggs are forbidden. Furthermore, Lent also excludes parties, secular music, dancing and other distractions from the spiritual life. Thus, Maslenitsa represents the last chance to partake of dairy products and those social activities that are not appropriate during the more prayerful, sober and introspective Lenten season.

Nicholas' BliniThe most characteristic food of Maslenitsa is bliny (pancakes or crepes). Round and golden, they are made from the rich foods still allowed by the Orthodox tradition that week: butter, eggs and milk. During pagan times, the round and golden shape and color signified praise to the Sun because of pancakes’ resemblance to it.

Maslenitsa activities also include snowball fights, sledding, riding on swings and plenty of sleigh rides. Each day of Maslenitsa has its traditional activity: one day for sleigh-riding, another for the sons-in-law to visit their parents-in-law, another day for visiting the godparents, etc.

Celebrate Maslenitsa with One World Cafe:

Russian Blini #1

Russian Blini #2

Grandma’s Blini

French Crepes

Nicholas’ Blini

Caribbean Pancakes

Oatmeal Cottage Cheese Pancakes

Buttermilk Pancakes

Pancakes

Oladiki (Russian Pancakes)

Blueberry Pancakes

Ricotta Cheese Pancakes

Hot Cakes

Apple Pancakes

Kefir Pancakes

Pear Pancakes

Ricotta Cheese Potato Pancakes

German Apple Pancake

Zucchini Pancakes

Russian Zucchini Pancakes

Cottage Cheese Pancakes

Best Buttermilk Pancakes

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