Mucenici is a Christian feast of the 40 Martyrs of Sebaste, a traditional holiday in Romania and Moldova. It coincides with the start of the agricultural year. Those who observe this holiday clean their households and light fire to garbage collected from their homes, to bring warmth outside.[1]


Some believe that when the Martyrs were drowned, flowers rose to the surface. As a result, for the date of 9 March, every, year, there is a typical dessert with the same name, Mucenici.

The desserts are made in the figure 8 to look like garlands. Others believe that the figure 8 denotes a stylized human form of the martyrs themselves.

In the Muntenia and Northern Dobrogea regions of Romania, the dough is boiled in water with sugar, cinnamon and crushed nuts, symbolizing the lake where the Martyrs were cast.


In Moldavia region, similar traditional pastries are named Sfințișori. The dough, in much larger shape of the figure 8 than mucenici, is baked, then smeared with honey and walnuts.

See also


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