Shrove Tuesday

Here is a wrap-up of our Shrove Tuesday endeavors.

A few years ago, I began referring to the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday as Shrove Tuesday as opposed to Mardi Gras or Fat Tuesday. Not that either of those titles have anything wrong with them, they don’t, I just liked the way Shrove Tuesday sounded. While our OT was here, we looked up what “shrove” means and found it is the past tense of “shrive” which means to hear a confession, assign penance, and absolve from sin. (See more here.) Since finding that out I like “Shrove Tuesday” even better.

My grandfather’s family is from Poland and we believe there are some other Eastern European cultures mixed in as well including, Russian. So, I had planned blini for our Shrove Tuesday breakfast. Of  course, Jeff had made pancakes over the weekend and had some left-overs so we used those instead of making traditional blini.

If you don’t know, blini are typically thinner than most pancakes, about as thin as you can make them. They are made with baking powder as well.  They are served with butter, jams and even caviar in Russia. Some people will tell you real blini have to be made from buckwheat. A Russian woman I met a few years ago told me that was well, hogwash, that people in Russia made blini of whatever was available or convenient or cost-effective and sometimes it varied from area to area on what was traditional.

We had them for breakfast and lunch. (I actually made real blini today.) My kids skipped the caviar and had them with dark karo syrup. I am not really proud of that, but it was in the spirit of the day.

In past years we have had King Cakes (shipped from New Orleans bakeries and sometimes including beads and dabloons) and one year even went to a Mardi Gras party at church where the food was cooked by a New Orlean’s native making gumbo, crawfish pie, jambalaya and with a real Zydeco band. I was just not as prepared as usual to accomplish any of that. Instead, this year we had chicken enchiladas for dinner. And for dessert we had a toffee cheesecake (it was made late last week, so we had been working on it a few days)…

Next year, I  hopefully will have my act together to make some gumbo and crawfish pie and order a King Cake. I also want to try these Swedish traditional treats.  But we  had our share of fat and calories that day for sure!