Greeks don’t really go on about New Year’s resolutions on January 1. Their biggest concern is the eternal question: “Who will get the good luck for the upcoming year?” And how that’s decided is about as random as a coin toss. Greek families the world over look forward to slicing the vasilopita (king pie or Saint Basil’s pie) after New Year’s supper to reveal the lucky winner of the “lira coin.” For the most part, with my family at least, I must say the winner has been pretty evenly distributed throughout the years. The message here: Balance does exist in the world.... So enjoy cutting this sweet, tasty cake. Just don’t bite down too hard, or your first trip of the new year will be the dentist chair. Hronia Polla! (Happy New Year!) And good luck to us all!
As for the pie-cutting ritual, there are numerous versions depending on local and family traditions. At my family’s home, my father says a little prayer, does “the cross” over the pie with a knife, then cuts the first pie slice for the “house” to bless the home with good luck for the New Year. My dad then proceeds to slice additional pieces by order of age from eldest to youngest. The recipient who finds the hidden coin is considered “blessed” for the entire year.
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