A Greek Clean Monday
Clean Monday (Greek: Καθαρά Δευτέρα), is the first day of Great Lent in the Orthodox Christian Pasha. This day is also called Koulouma.
This day in Greece is celebrated as a National Holiday. The whole family gathers around a table full of mezethes, made specially for the day. If the weather allows it, it also involves outdoor acitivities of flying kite and Maypole which is a custom brought from the refugees in Greece, but also has special dishes such as lagana, halva, tarama and various others.
The Maypole Dance Custom(Γαϊτανάκι in Greek)
Halvas is called the dessert made with sesame paste and glucose syrup, often found with almonds, cocoa or vanilla. Τhis halva is very nutritious as it contains sesame which is one of the Greek superfoods.
Also there are many other dishes that are enjoyed on Clean Monday. Some prepare giant beans in tomato sauce, seafood like mussles and shrimp in tomato sauce, or fried in olive oil. Other enjoy a shrimp spaghetti dish, or a mydopilafo which is rice with herbs and mussles.