Have you seen The Big Fat Greek Wedding? Well, this story it’s kind of like that.
Woke up on the sound of a Hungarian folk music coming from outside. The family members, all the relatives, they are all here. It has began!
First thing first, we have to set up the tent for the wedding reception. We are on a mission!
There is one thing you need to understand regards this wedding reception. This won’t be the main wedding reception where all the guests will gather, no, no, no…. The bride lives 150km away from the grooms home town and the main reception will be there. So why not one big wedding reception in the main hall you might ask, why a second one? The Big Fat Greek Wedding, remember? Except that this is not a Greek wedding, but two other cultures come together, you might find it similar, but still very different and they both have to keep their side of the traditions. I will cover more of this in my second blog post and YouTube video.
Mission one! Set up the tent for the pre-wedding reception at the grooms end. We all hop onto the tractor, went after this massive tent, put it all on the tractor, take it home and slowly set it up.
Mission two! The decorations!
Part of the tradition is that we have to decorate the gates with green branches which I believe symbolizes new beginnings and prosperity for the new married couple. Somewhere on the arch made of branches we also put a sign welcoming the guests. The signs says: “Isten Hozott Kedves Vendeg” (Welcome dear guests! It is more spiritual than that, but I am not sure if you can literally translate it.) You will also find kids blowing up the balloons and hanging it all over the place and colorful crepe paper too.
Mission three! Prepare the food!
If you will ever end up vising Eastern Europe, you will see that all Eastern European cultures and traditions are all around food, loads of food! You can’t even imagine. Well, back in the days most of the people at the country side had a small farm, raising pigs, chickens, cows, sheep and so on, you got the idea. At the wedding preparation and usually around a big holiday, they use to butcher the pig or cow so they have plenty of food for the wedding or holiday. Some do this even today, who ever have a small farm home, but you will find that a lot of the people these days work in the city in an office or factory, so it doesn’t happen quite that often and they buy the ingredients or pay for the menu at a restaurant. Well, this is not entirely our case! People still keep some of the traditions and bring a chicken or two, or eggs flour as a gift for the wedding.
Although we don’t have that big of a farm, we still raise chickens, actually that’s all we have these days and bought everything else, because the food has to be home made. That’s the proper way!
“Sarmale”, these are rolled cabbage stuffed with rice and pork meat, this is a must have! Mashed potatoes with pork and chicken, as if you can’t have a wedding without them. Meat balls, schnitzel, sweet bread, many many kind of sweets, loads of wine, beer, palinca(brandy) it all has to be on the table. When we are talking about that much food, you will find twice as much cook’s and even more recipes.
While the cook’s gossip and prepare the food, the man takes care of the wine and palinca which brings us to mission four.
Mission four! Have loads of fun!
The music is loud, everyone can hear the Hungarian folk music, everyone tastes the wine and they just can’t seem to be able to move on, but stop at wine tasting and singing old folk songs.
My next article will be about the wedding day, it will be loads of fun. In the meantime, I hope you enjoy this short video about the wedding preparation for my brothers wedding.