Happy Pancake Day! Why do we celebrate Pancake Day (Shrove Tueday)?
Shrove Tuesday, is traditionally a day for some merry-making - a last 'fling' before the long fast.
It is best remembered today with making pancakes, the last chance to indulge yourself before Lent. For most people it is just pancake day and nothing more, but the custom arose through the need to use up food items, which were forbidden during Lent.
Pancakes were, and still are believed to be of good luck in many areas of the world as they contained many herbs and food items associated with the prosperity and longevity.
Made from batter and fried, in fat, the ingredients symbolise four crucial points of significance at this time of year:
Eggs ~ Creation
Flour ~ The staff of life
Salt ~ Wholesomeness
Milk ~ Purity 'Shrove' refers to the practice of confessing of sins, then afterwards the fast of Lent could be considered a penance of faults committed.
What happens on Pancake Day in England?
Pancakes are eaten and pancake races are held in villages and towns. The object of the race is to get to the finishing line first, carrying a frying pan with a cooked pancake in it whilst flipping the pancake a pre-decided number of times. The skill lies not so much in the running of the race but in flipping and catching the pancake, which must be intact when the finishing line is reached.