Why is Chocolate Associated with Easter?
It is widely accepted that eggs represent a symbol of new life. Early Christians adopted eggs as a way to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus. But how did the eggs become chocolate?!
During Lent, Christians abstained from eating all animal products, including meat, eggs and dairy.
Traditionally, at the end of Lent, all eggs laid by hens that had not been eaten would be decorated with bright colours and shared to commemorate Easter and the end of Lent.
Even before Christianity, the egg symbolised rebirth, new life, and fertility.
Pagan traditions were among the first to connect with rabbits and bunnies – celebrating the coming of spring, new life, and fertility with rituals involving planting seeds, egg races, and egg hunts. Rabbits were associated with fertility and new life, which established the tradition of Easter bunnies and hares that we know today.
We all know that history evolves, and so do traditions!
Chocolate Easter Eggs
Today, many people associate Easter not just with bunnies and eggs but with chocolate and, of course, chocolate Easter eggs.
But how did we progress from boiled chicken eggs painted with colours to rows and rows of supermarket shelves filled with chocolate eggs, bunnies, and hot cross buns?
Beginning in the Middle Ages, the decorating of eggs became more and more sophisticated. Simple dyed eggs soon became decorated with plants and ferns in Austria. In Russia and Europe, they were dyed red and even decorated with silver and gold and jewels.
It is believed that the very first chocolate egg appeared in Britain in 1873 and was manufactured by J.S. Fry & Sons. This was followed two years later, with Cadbury producing the very first modern chocolate Easter egg in 1875.
With the invention of delicious and fine chocolate came the innovation of pouring it into moulds for indulgent treats. Early chocolate Easter eggs were plain with a smooth surface, but the ornate decorations of piping and marzipan flowers soon arrived on the scene.
Wrapped in tissue paper tied with silk ribbons, the beautiful gift was synonymous with luxury and barely comparable to today’s mass-produced foil-wrapped supermarket eggs.
Today religious and sentimental reasons behind Easter tradition are sometimes overshadowed by the excitement of a visit from the Easter Bunny and a houseful of chocolate treats on Easter morning.
But What if You Can’t Eat Chocolate?
With Easter now so heavily commercialised and geared toward chocolate, you may struggle to find alternatives if you are a person who isn’t a chocolate lover or who has dietary restrictions and allergies.
Gin Gin and Dry has the answer. Dried fruit is sweet and delicious, good for you too, and a perfect accompaniment to chocolate! What could be more celebratory of new life than a gorgeous dried fruit platter overflowing with sweet, colourful treats produced by Mother Nature?
Full of colour and flavour, our dried fruits are the perfect bounty for an Easter hamper jam-packed with goodness.
And if you’re still looking for healthy alternatives to chocolate for Easter, you may find some more ideas here.
Gin Gin & Dry are your team of passionate gourmets and dedicated dried fruit wholesalers in Australia.
Locally grown fruit and a unique drying process, Gin Gin & Dry have no added preservatives, colouring or additives and are the perfect healthy snack alternative.
Check out our online store and take advantage of flat rate shipping right across Australia.