Yes, it’s that time of the year again!
A well-loved festival by all where you can find colourfully painted eggs, creatively designed confectionery and of course, the highlight of this festival – chocolate! With Easter just around the corner, various sizes of bunny shaped chocolates, hollow chocolate eggs and all sorts of coated flavored chocolate eggs with vibrant wrappings can be found in most supermarkets and stores. It is also the time of the year where chocolate manufacturers peak in their production and sales. Chocolates are loved by many around the world. However, have you ever wondered why do we consume so much of it during Easter? What does chocolate have to do with Easter?
To answer this question, we’ll have to go way back.
Not so surprisingly, a few centuries ago Easter wasn’t associated with chocolate eggs (…yet).
Easter is a Christian festival that celebrates the resurrection of Jesus. In the pre-Christian times, eggs were used as gifts to celebrate spring, and traditionally it symbolises rebirth, rejuvenation and immortality. Hence, eggs are closely associated with the meaning of this celebration. So… where does chocolate come in?
Chocolate Easter eggs first appeared in the 19th century. At first they were considered an expensive luxury but then it became more affordable in the later years due to advancement in the industry. People liked the taste of chocolate. As it became more affordable, it increased in popularity and slowly became a tradition to exchange decorated candy and specialised sweets during Easter (and Valentine’s day as well). Following the improvement in chocolate making techniques as well as the commercialisation of Easter in the 20th century, chocolate Easter eggs became popular very quickly and its popularity remained till today.
The various types of chocolate we have now for Easter resulted from the traditional symbolism of eggs, combined with our love for chocolate.
Sometimes it seems as though chocolate is a mandatory component of Easter but it doesn’t have to be if we don’t want it to be. Easter can be celebrated with or without chocolate and the main focus should be on enjoyment and spending time with those you love.