If you've ever experienced really top notch homemade Christmas pudding, you'll probably have been savouring a festive delight that's slowly been developing its rich, satisfying and complex flavours since the last Sunday in November, which is known as Stir-Up Sunday.
Stir-Up Sunday is the traditional first celebration of Advent, the festival that celebrates the 'coming' of Christmas and has always been a family occasion that's centered around the preparation of the pudding.
Everyone should take a turn stirring the pudding mixture for luck, from East to West in honour of the Three Wise Men, make a secret wish and chant the traditional rhyme: "Stir Up, we beseech thee, the pudding in the pot. And when we get home we’ll eat the lot"!
Traditionally, a sixpence was added to the Christmas pudding mix, alongside a healthy slug of brandy, to bring wealth to the person who finds it on their plate. However, over the years, a whole range of things have been added to the pudding, including:
- A horseshoe for luck.
- A bell for warding off evil.
- A silver button for a bachelor.
- A ring to predict a marriage.
What would the modern equivalent be, we wonder? If you've any amusing ideas, leave a Comment below (it only take a moment to Register)...
So today gather the family around the mixing bowl, make a wish, sing a song, hide your tokens in the pudding and, most importantly, start looking forward to Christmas...
Don’t forget, you can buy the print version of The Simple Things at good retailers around the globe, individually online or buy a subscription. For your iPad/iPhone, visit the Apple Newsstand and if you’ve got Android or a tablet, go to Zinio.
Christmas gift idea: save up to 40% on a subscription to The Simple Things, or one of seven other brilliant Future magazines – we’ll even send a free personalised gift card! It’s quick and easy to order online or by calling 0844 848 2852 (quote code ZC09 – Mon-Fri 8am-9.30pm & Sat 8am-4pm). Offer ends 31/01/2013.