It’s that time of year when the winter air nips your nose and Christmas cheer begins to spread across the world. So in honor of the Christmas season here are five Czech Christmas traditions to try:
On December 6th is St. Nicholas Day That children eagerly await. On the Eve of December 5th St. Nicholas (Mikuláš) accompanied by an angel and a devil representing good and evil. If the children have been good, then they will receive goodies in the morning, but if they have been bad, then they will receive black coal from the devil.
A traditional Czech Christmas dinner is eaten on Christmas Eve and consists of fish soup (carp) and fried carp and potato salad. Children will eat in another room away from the Christmas tree so Ježíšek (Baby Jesus) will deliver presents to them. A bell is rung typically by the parents signifying that gifts have been left under the tree and are ready to be opened after dinner.
On Christmas Eve it is also time to decorate the tree with traditional ornaments, and some families hand make decorations out of flour, water, and vinegar these ornaments are called Vizovické Pečivo.
Another Czech tradition is that each member of the family will receive an apple to cut in half if the core reveals a star that person will have happiness and good health for the year to come. If the apple reveals a cross then bad luck may follow in the next year.
This last Christmas Tradition is a tasty one, Czech Christmas bread known as Vánočka, is a beautifully braided sweet bread commonly made with raisins and almonds. It is said that the finished product of the braided bead is supposed to represent Baby Jesus wrapped in cloth. The making of this bread carries special preparations from household to household.
Let us know your favorite Christmas Traditions down below! Veselé Vánoce!