The special cake "Vassilopita" is on display in a street in Athens, Greece, on Dec. 30, 2017. Greek bakers sent their wishes for a Happy 2018 to the world on Saturday by making and offering for free to the citizens of Athens a 2.5-ton "Vassilopita", the special cake usually served at all households in Greece after midnight on New Year's day. (Xinhua/Marios Lolos)
ATHENS, Dec. 30 (Xinhua) -- Greek bakers sent their wishes for a Happy 2018 to the world on Saturday by making and offering for free to the citizens of Athens a 2.5-ton "Vassilopita", the special cake usually served at all households in Greece after midnight on New Year's day.
The 70-meter-long and 3-meter-wide "Vassilopita", which was cut in 15,000 slices at a central square in Athens' suburban municipality of Peristeri, is the largest ever made in Greece, according to organizers.
Forty people worked hard for three days to prepare the record-breaking, delicious cake, Panagiotis Sachinidis, President of the Association of Athens' Bakers who took the initiative, told Xinhua.
"I am a professional for over 30 years and I have not seen anything big like this," he said.
The previous record was held by the same association since 2015, when they had baked and served a "Vassilopita" weighing 350 kilos.
The municipality of Peristeri hid 200 "lucky coins" inside the cake. Those who found the coins will have blessings throughout the year, according to Greek customs.
"Vassilopita" named after Saint Basil, the Santa Claus for Greek Orthodox Christians, always contains a hidden coin which brings good luck to the finder.
The lucky citizens were given also small gifts by the Mayor of Peristeri Andreas Pachatouridis who helped slice the cake. "We are cutting the Vassilopita of the love and solidarity," he said addressing the event.
"This is the message we want to convey, that there should be solidarity among us these difficult days," Sachinidis added, referring to the debt crisis which has hit hard Greece since 2009.
"All people living in Greece these days need a taste of optimism, joy and happiness," Mary Tsiota, deputy mayor of Peristeri, in charge of culture, told Xinhua.