PANCAKE DAY!! How many of us, I wonder, remember having fun as children each year on Pancake Day, tossing pancakes, having pancake races or just enjoying eating them?
And have we any idea what Pancake Day is all about? Or even when it is?
Well answering that last question first, this year, Pancake Day is on Tuesday, the day before the perhaps better known Valentine’s Day.
Always on a Tuesday, and more correctly known as Shrove Tuesday, Pancake Day is set as being 47 days before Easter Sunday, which is why the date varies.
It is, in fact the last day before Lent, a time in preparation for Easter, when Christians the World over traditionally fast as they remember the 40 days when Jesus fasted and was tested by Satan as he prepared for his ministry.
So traditionally, in preparation for that six-week period of fasting, Shrove Tuesday was the last day, prior to Easter when folk could ‘let their hair down’ or enjoy a good feast; so it was a time to clear the cupboards of any eggs, fat or sugar, which simply wouldn’t last out.
And what better way to clear these products than to make pancakes and enjoy them while you can?
So Pancake Day was born, and is still celebrated in various ways around the World, with perhaps the most famed event being the Parliamentary Pancake Race, with members of both houses and the press competing against each other, tossing their pancakes as they sprint through Victoria Tower Gardens, by the Houses of Parliament.
In this part of Spain, as we prepare for the discipline and reflection of Lent, many will enjoy Pancake Day in traditional fashion, with, for any living in the Almanzora Valley area, one option being at Aljambra Chapel, see the Anglican Church website.
Or you can always of course celebrate Pancake Day alone, with family or friends and reflect, as you enjoy eating, the background and history of this fun food.