While here in US we've already celebrated Christmas and New Year in Slavic countries with Orthodox Christianity people only start to prepare Christmas meals since they will celebrate Christmas Day only on the 7th of January according to Gregorian calendar. Peter the Great more then 300 years ago changed the New Year Celebration in Russia to the 1st of January and Christmas was celebrated on the 25th of December. But after the Russian Revolution of 1917 communists took the Christmas out and made the New Year a very secular holiday. Orthodox christians however continued to celebrate Christmas on the 7th of January. Although it was rather hard for them to keep fasting while New Year celebrations were held. And now in Orthodox countries it is still the same. They will have their Christmas Eve meal on the 6th of January which will begin only after the first star will appear on the night sky in remembrance of the Star in Bethlehem which announced the Birth of the Baby Jesus. They call Christmas Eve “Sochel'nik”, from the word Sochivo - first dish that they will have on this Eve also named Kutya. It consists of boiled wheat sweetened with honey.

 

 

On “Sochel'nik” slavic people have a tradition to go from door to door and sing Christmas songs so that hosts could enjoy their singing and bless them with some tasty treats:

Merry Christmas to you, Slavic Style!