Geeting Bread, Korovai, and Wedding CakeLast year I posted pictures of Korovai and Wedding Cakes from weddings I have attended, and promised to do the same from all future weddings I will attend.

I had the pleasure of attending three weddings this year, and will share some of the special traditions and pictures from each of these weddings.

Today I will share my stories and pictures from a Ukrainian-Greek wedding, my husband and I attended, which took place at St. Nicholas Ukrainian Catholic Church, in Toronto, Canada.

St. Nicholas Ukrainian Catholic Church, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

This wedding was very special to us, since the daughter of our long time friend was getting married, and also because the wedding ceremony was taking place in the same church as the filming of the, the ever so popular movie, “My Big Fat Greek Wedding”.

Ikonostas at St. Nicholas Ukrainian Catholic Church, Toronto, Canada Chandlier and upper level of St.Nicholas Ukrainian Catholic Church in Toronto, Canada

The church ceremony was traditional Ukrainian, which is very similar to the Greek tradition as well, since Ukrainians accepted Christianity from Constantinople in 988.

Reception Banquet Hall - Toronto, Canada Centerpiece from J & Y wedding

The reception took place in a very tastefully decorated banquet hall, with delicious food, and exquisite Venetian Hour.

It began with the traditional Ukrainian bread, wine and salt greeting of the newlyweds, by their parents.

Greeting Bread for the Bride and Groom

The Bride and Groom also followed a Greek traditional game of guessing who will be the “boss” in their household.  They stood side by side, slightly apart, each held one end of a loaf of bread (Challah loaf) with one hand, and tried to pulled it away from each other.  The person who ended up with the larger portion of the bread in their hand, will play the dominant role in the family.

I will not disclose who the winner was (Bride or Groom), but am encouraging you to leave your guesses in the comment section, and I will reveal the answer to the 10th commenter.

The wedding fun picked up with the traditional Greek Dance, a line dance similar to the Italian Tarantella, or the Jewish Hava Nagila, and the fun kept on escalating as the reception continued.

The Vail dance with Babushka scarf

The Bride also chose to incorporate a Ukrainian tradition of exchanging her veil for a head scarf (babushka).

This tradition takes place toward the end of the wedding reception.  The Bride is seated on a chair in the middle of the dance floor.  Her mother takes the white veil off her daughter’s head, and replaces it with a white flowered head scarf, while special songs are being sung by a chorus of ladies.  The veil is then passed around, and worn by singles ladies who takes turns to dance with the Groom.  The Bride engages in a dance known as “veil dance”, as the guests line up to dance with the Bride, offer money for the dance, and are served a cordial drink.

Korovai for J & Y

Another tradition present at almost every Ukrainian wedding, is the gorgeous bread called Korovai, which is basically a gift to the Bride and Groom, by the Bride’s mother.  The Korovai symbolizes love, prosperity, and fertility wished upon the Newlyweds.

Wedding Cake - J & Y

At last, here is the very traditional part of every wedding in United States, and obviously Canada – The Wedding Cake.

This Bride and Groom selected Peacock as their wedding theme, hence also reflected on their wedding cake.  The Peacock on this cake was created from sugar. Each feather was made separately, and individually hand painted before being attached to the cake to crate this beautiful display of the full view of the Peacock.

The artwork was stunning, and the cake was decadent.

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Related posts:

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  3. Ukrainian Wedding – Korovai, Greeting Bread, and Wedding Cake
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9 Responses

  1. Larysa

    September 24th, 2010 at 6:04 pm

    1

    Love your posting! I had a Ukrainian wedding myself!

  2. Suburban Grandma

    September 24th, 2010 at 7:26 pm

    2

    Thank you very much.
    Ukrainian weddings are so much fun, besides all the traditions and symbolism.
    Stay tuned, as I have few more posts coming up about other weddings I attended this year.

  3. Diana

    September 29th, 2010 at 8:52 pm

    3

    Love that cake!! That is so cool that they got married at the same church as Big Fat Greek Wedding! :)

  4. Suburban Grandma

    September 30th, 2010 at 6:56 pm

    4

    Yes that was exciting. I actually had to watch the video again, and it was so cool to recognize the same church in the video.

  5. Oksana

    October 17th, 2010 at 7:15 pm

    5

    I love that korovai. It’s beautiful! Is there any chance that I can get the recipe, especially for the dough for the birds and wheat sheaves? It also looks to me like the birds are from two different doughs. I’ve tried all the other korovai recipes out there, but mine just don’t look as nice as these.
    I’m very good at making the birds, but these just look like the dough is perfect and smooth and uniform. My son is getting married and I’m stressing out over trying to find the perfect recipe.
    Please help! Diakuju!

  6. Suburban Grandma

    October 18th, 2010 at 8:21 pm

    6

    Unfortunately I do not know who made that Korovai, so I will not be able to give you that recipe. I have a recipe for the korovai and birds my daughter had for her wedding.
    http://suburbangrandma.com/culture/ukrainian-wedding-%E2%80%93-korovai-greeting-bread-and-wedding-cake/

    The birds are shiny because this Korovai was already preserved for storing purposes.

  7. Edward @ Wedding Ceremony Songs

    December 3rd, 2010 at 12:48 am

    7

    A unique wedding for me. For the first time I heard the Ukrainian wedding. Excellent photos. I like all the stuff especially the creation of that fabulous cake. The art I see it there clearly. Congratulations!. More Power

  8. Suburban Grandma

    December 3rd, 2010 at 6:12 pm

    8

    Thank you.
    It was a beautiful wedding indeed.

  9. Banquet halls Mississauga

    November 23rd, 2011 at 4:24 am

    9

    That was really a beautiful tradition and culture seen by me,Thanks for sharing this innovative article.


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