Wednesday 27 November 2013

Casting Light Upon the Darkness

I am joining in a Blog Hop with Helen Hollick today, December 21st 2013 - the longest night
Entitled: Casting Light Upon the Darkness 

Theme is shedding light on something puzzling or unknown.

My contribution...

Shedding Light on a Traditional Pie!

One of the things I love about Christmas and that is mince pies. Many months before the festive season is even thought about, I prepare my own mincemeat, adding my own measures of spices and fruit and always left soaking in lashings of brandy. Then a couple weeks before Christmas I make my first batch of mince pies, to test of course! 
But did you know that the mince pie has its ingredient traceable back to the 13th century when returning European crusaders brought with them Middle Eastern recipes containing meets, fruits and spices?
The early mince pie was known by several names, including mutton pie, shred pie and Christmas pie. Typically its ingredients were a mixture of minced meat, suet, a range of fruits and spices - cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg.
But no matter where your mince pie comes from, enjoy!

To get you into the festive spirit, my 20 minute short story, Next Christmas Will Be Different is FREE to download from Amazon co uk and Amazon com

Thank you for stopping by wishing you and all your loves ones a very Merry Christmas!

Now take a peek at the other fabby posts on this special day....

  1. Helen Hollick : A little light relief concerning those dark reviews! Plus a Giveaway Prize
  2. Alison Morton  : Shedding light on the Roman dusk  - Plus a Giveaway Prize! 
  3. Beth Elliott : Steering by the Stars. Stratford Canning in Constantinople, 1810/12
  4. Melanie Spiller : Lux Aeterna, the chant of eternal light
  5. Janet Reedman   The Winter Solstice Monuments
  6. Petrea Burchard  : Darkness - how did people of the past cope with the dark? Plus a Giveaway Prize!
  7. Richard Denning The Darkest Years of the Dark Ages: what do we really know? Plus a Giveaway Prize
  8. David Ebsworth : Propaganda in the Spanish Civil War
  9. David Pilling  :  Greek Fire -  Plus a Giveaway Prize!
  10. Debbie Young : Fear of the Dark
  11. Derek Birks  : Lies, Damned Lies and … Chronicles
  12. Mark Patton : Casting Light on Saturnalia
  13. Tim Hodkinson : Soltice@Newgrange
  14. Wendy Percival  : Ancestors in the Spotlight
  15. Judy Ridgley : Santa and his elves  Plus a Giveaway Prize
  16. Suzanne McLeod  : The Dark of the Moon
  17. Katherine Bone   : Admiral Nelson, A Light in Dark Times
  18. Christina Courtenay : The Darkest Night of the Year
  19. Edward James  : The secret life of Christopher Columbus; Which Way to Paradise?
  20. Janis Pegrum Smith  : Into The Light - A Short Story
  21. Julian Stockwin  : Ghost Ships - Plus a Giveaway Present
  22. Manda Scott : Dark into Light - Mithras, and the older gods
  23. Pat Bracewell Anglo-Saxon Art: Splendor in the Dark
  24. Lucienne Boyce : We will have a fire - 18th Century protests against enclosure
  25. Nicole Evelina What Lurks Beneath Glastonbury Abbey? 
  26. Sky Purington  :  How the Celts Cast Light on Current American Christmas Traditions
  27. Stuart MacAllister (Sir Read A Lot) : The Darkness of Depression


Wendy Percival said...

You've made me hungry now and I haven't baked any yet! Better put it on the list...

Debbie Young said...

Well done, Pauline, two major winter festivals celebrated in a single post! My purist friend once made mince pies from a Victorian recipe that used real meat, and actually they were surprisingly nice. I suppose all the alcohol and sugar stops it going off. Think I'll be sticking with the modern ones though!

Pauline Barclay said...

Hello Wendy, thanks for stopping by and enjoy your mince pies :)

Pauline Barclay said...

Hello Debbie, mmm they sound ok, but like you, I'll stick the ones we are used too. Thanks for stopping by. :)

Lucienne Boyce said...

I love making mincemeat too - it makes the house smell lovely and Christmassy! Of course, I leave out the meat for a veggy alternative - not the brandy though.

Anonymous said...

How interesting, Pauline! Do you have a favorite recipe you'd be wiling to share?

Pauline Barclay said...

Hello Lucienne, thank you for stopping by. In mincemeat there is no meat! Have a wonderful Christmas.

Pauline Barclay said...

Hi Nicole, I love cooking so I have many and always happy to share. Have a wonderful Christmas.

David Ebsworth said...

Fascinating! When I was researching for The Jacobites' Apprentice I came across the interesting fact that, in 1745 (and presumably a lengthy period before and after) there was no such thing as a wedding cake but, rather, a Wedding Pie - also made from meats, fruit and spices baked in pastry. And inside there would be a glass ring. The person finding the ring (and hopefully neither chewing or swallowing same) would be the "next person to be wed".

Pauline Barclay said...

Hello David, thank you for that, very interesting and thanks too for stopping by. Have a wonderful Christmas.

Beth Elliott said...

I'm glad the minced meat has been replaced by all the fruit. Your post has made me feel hungry for some truly festive fare. Happy Christmas.

Christina Courtenay said...

I'm afraid I don't like mince pies at all, but they look delicious and very festive :-)

Helen Hollick said...

excuse me while I raid the cupboard for the mince pies my daughter made!

Pauline Barclay said...

Hello Beth, enjoy your festive fare and wishing you a very merry Christmas.

Pauline Barclay said...

Hi Christina, thank you so much for stopping by. Have a wonderful Christmas.

Pauline Barclay said...

Hello Helen, enjoy :)

Petrea Burchard said...

My mother used to make these pies but I don't think they had meat in them. They're not as common now but I'd love to try a good one again!

Yves Fey said...

You're making me lust for a slice!