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A Celebratory Feast

By August 10, 2011

Roast Leg of Lamb

The Feast of the Dormition of the Virgin Mary is celebrated on August 15th each year. This is the day that we honor the "falling asleep" or Kimisis (KEE-mee-sees) of the Theotokos, or Mother of God.

The feast day happens to coincide with the period of time that most Greeks break for Summer holiday. There is a great exodus from the city as people depart Athens and head to their family villages and island homes.

If you happen to be named Mary, Maria, Marie, Panagiota, Panagiotis, Despina, or any other name derived from the Virgin Mary, then the 15th of August is your feast day.

The greeting for someone celebrating his or her patron saint's day is, "Hronia Polla" which translates to a wish for "many years." After church services, friends and family will travel from home to home to greet the name day celebrants and to offer their wishes in person.

In return, the celebrant is expected to put out a spread for their guests in the typical Greek style of entertaining which means tons of food and sweets. Having fasted for the two weeks prior, it's time to feast.

In a traditional Greek home, the Roast Leg of Lamb with Potatoes is a customary offering for holidays and gatherings.

This is my simple recipe for Roast Leg of Lamb with Potatoes which I offer with many good wishes for Hronia Polla to all those that celebrate.


August 15, 2011 at 5:00 pm
(1) Lisa says:


Xronia Polla to you on this feast day of going to church, and enjoying the the summertime weather !

It was nice to walk around the church during the beautiful evening warm weather, eventhough a bit of rain also got into the festivities…

Take care,


August 19, 2011 at 10:51 am
(2) Lisa M. Sims says:

THIS is the recipe I’ve been looking for! I had a very similar dish in a Greek restaurant in Detroit a couple of years ago, and have been looking for the recipe ever since. Yes, I know it’s very simple, but we usually grill or braise (on the stove) our lamb. A year ago, I found a recipe that I THOUGHT would be right, and it was good…but now really what I was hoping for. This recipe sounds like it will be even better than what I had at the restaurant. Thank you!

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