While many associate February with Valentine’s Day, Pancake day, or Shrove Tuesday is also widely celebrated.
Pancake Day falls tomorrow (21 February), but why is it called Shrove Tuesday, and why do we celebrate it?
Pancake Day, or Shrove Tuesday, is traditionally the feast day before the start of Lent on Ash Wednesday. Lent is the 40 days leading up to Easter and was a time of fasting.
On Shrove Tuesday, Anglo-Saxon Christians went to confession and were “shriven” (which means to be absolved from their sins). A bell would be used to call people to the confession. This bell came to be called the “Pancake Bell” and it is still rung out today.
Shrove Tuesday always falls 47 days before Easter Sunday so the date varies each year, with this year’s falling on February 21.
Shrove Tuesday was the last opportunity to use up any eggs and fats that might be left in the kitchen before embarking on the Lenten fast. Pancakes are the perfect way of using up these ingredients!
For some pancake ideas such as the Austrian Kaiserschmarrn, that diverge from the usual lemon and sugar pancake, have a look at Yotam Ottolengi’s recipes here.
This Pancake Day, why not try Strawberry and Nutella Pancakes Tea from Bird & Blend Tea Co.? Match with your favourite pancakes for the ultimate Pancake Day this February.