Tsiknopempti (Τσικνοπέμπτη in Greek) is the celebration of the Orthodox tradition in which great quantities of meat are consumed. Tsikna means the smell of grilled meat and Pempti means Thursday (Πέμπτη in Greek). This day is also called Charred, Fat ,Smoky or Barbeque Thursday due to the large amount of meat that is cooked all over Cyprus and Greece.
This day signals the last week that the Greek Orthodox members are allowed to eat meat before the fasting period of Lent. It is therefore celebrated 11 days before Green Monday. It takes place on a Thursday due to the fact that Wednesday and Friday are considered to be fasting days of the second week of the Apokria (which means away from meat).
Barbeques are set up all over the two countries, where restaurants, taverns and even the streets are filled with the smells of grilled meat. Restaurants are overcrowded with people and in many cases live music is performed for this occasion, therefore reservations are definitely necessary on this day. The most popular dishes are souvlaki, souvla,sheftalies,kokoretsi, kontosouvli, steaks and sausages. Enjoy this special meaty day!