The Pie that brings you Luck( + Recipe)

Joined Jul 24, 2001
We have talked about evil eyes and superstitions .

It's New Year's Eve and today in my country we follow the brightest of traditions, which is my favourite.

A tradition that makes you feel Joy and Optimism, something we all need in our days.

Today we bake the Vassilopita and I have just baked mine :)

Vassilopita is a sweet Pie, a cake, where we hide a coin.
When we are going to have the Vassilopita tomorrow and everyone takes a piece the person who finds it will be lucky one for the rest of the Year. :)

The excitment is great and the elders have invented millions of tricks so as the coin goes to the most weak person of the family, the one that needs support.
Grandparents have the power to do such miraculous things.

I remember , when my grandpa was alive I remember that I have found the coin three times and when I was screaming " I found it I found it", grandpa was smiling and he was telling me " You see? Everything will go as you wish this year, the coin is the proof that you will have the luck with you, don't loose hope"

I have many friends all around the world, that they prepare the vassilopita regardless their nationality and their religion, since the have learned about this tradition.

So I thought to share this with you.

It's the most heart warming Greek Tradition.

I post here the recipe, is very easy.

When is ready the head of the family must take a big knife, cross it three times ,if you are christians and start "nominating" the pieces.
The first one goes to Jesus Christ
The second to the House
The third to the business
The fourth to the poor and the homeless that might knock on your door
The rest goes to every single member of the family starting from the older ones.

I am sure that I would take the coin this year if my grandfather was alive :)

Enjoy and do not forget the coin!!

The Recipe

Vassilopita of Smyrne ( Asia Minor)


6 cups of flour
6 eggs
2 cups of sugar
3/4 cup of Butter
1 small glass of brandy
3 tsp of baking powder
Orange juice from an orange
Orange zest

Prepare the meringue of the whites of the eggs.
Add the baking powder to the flour
Stir the sugar with the egg yolks
Mix the orange juice with the brandy
Add the zest to the egg yolks mixture.
You add the above as follows

First add the orange juice with the brandy to the egg mixture. Stir. Add half of the flour with the baking powder and stir well.Add the meringue . Stir again and then add the rest of the flour.

Place your mixture in a greased pan and bake in a medium over for 1 hour.
When it's ready remove it from the oven and sprinkle caster sugar all over.
Joined Nov 21, 2001
dear athenaeus,
thank you for bringing back a wonderful memory for me. i had lost my recipe for this bread, but i instantly recalled the face of the person making the cuts across the bread. i'm not sure if getting the coin was lucky or not that year, as i made several choices that no longer brought me back to that table! ;) i do miss the cooking though!
Joined Mar 4, 2000
It's more than just a recipe when we learn the tradition behind it. Thanks for the story, Athenaeus!
Joined Nov 20, 2000
How do I put a feeling into words. It's the little things like that, that really are the backbone of humanity, to me. Family and friends. It's a great story and for you Vivian I hope you find a coin this year and remember. Because that, is your true gift.
(still I have to wonder if the tradition as started by a dentist;) )
Joined Jul 24, 2001
You have to know that I have traced all the Greek hearts around here, althought I have never mentioned anything.

To me, my country is everything and nothing, you know what I mean, I carry the feeling in me so it goes everywhere I go :)

To my pie, there will be a piece for you, I promise and I hope that the coin goes to this piece

Happy New Year

Joined May 14, 2001
Thanks for sharing! Our Vasilopita is baked and ready to be cut. It has been many years since I was the one to find the coin...but that's OK. My mother has had many health problems this year - I hope she is the one to find the coin this year! She's deserves a much better year than this past....

The happiest of New Year's to one and all!
Joined Jul 24, 2001
You won't believe what happened...

I found the coin!!! :bounce:
With no "help" from grandpa :bounce: he he he

When I found it, my thoughts automatically came to you!! LOL

Joined Apr 30, 2001
Congratulations, Athenaeus!!! And thanks for sharing this wonderful story and recipe...

I need more traditions. I'm thinking about "borrowing" some of the traditions I read here!


Joined May 4, 2000
Athenaeus, was the coin a newly minted Euro?
I hope the Euro brings luck to all Europe this year (or at least the participating countries):
Joined Jul 24, 2001
Gam :bounce:

It was a Euro Indeed!!!
I am so happy for our euro and I feel so optimistic about the future of our beloved europe!!!

I had in mind to post in Late Night Cafe about this!!

But Gam my friend you have to know that my heart beats for Israel too.
My grandma was a Greek jew who lived in Israel after the War.

I wish you peace and prosperity to my second country!


Joined May 4, 2000
Thank you Athenaeus for your kind words. lets hope that the Euro succeeds and that this coming year is a more successful one for us all!!!
If you ever wish to visit your second country you have a place to rest your head, even though I live in the periferry(???) of our small country.
Joined Jul 24, 2001
Thank you Gam a lot, this was very kind of you.

I have a place though :)

And tones of memories as a child .
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