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Why do we eat mince pies at Christmas?

The mince pie is a treat utterly synonymous with Christmas in the UK. Whether you have perfected the art of baking your own at home or you pop some in your shopping trolley, there’s nothing like having a warm mince pie with a dollop of brandy cream after putting up the Christmas decorations to get you in the festive mood. Here are some facts about this festive staple:

How has the mince pie changed over the years?

As the name suggests, the mince pie would have originally been filled with meat, particularly game, like pheasant and partridge. This filling was eventually replaced with the dried fruit and spice mix we use today. Today, we are also used to the perfectly round shape of a mince pies, whereas they used to be oval to represent the manger of Jesus.

Historically, mince pies were considered an indulgence only afforded by the wealthy. Christmas parties were an opportunity to show off in extravagance with pies in the shape of crescents, stars or hearts.

Why do we eat them at Christmas?

This dates back to the middles ages. The story goes that if you ate a mince pie every day from Christmas until twelfth night, you would have good luck for the whole year.

Regardless of whether it brings good luck or not, there’s no denying that when that when you have your first taste of a mince pie’s crumbly pastry and sweet filling, it feels like Christmas has finally arrived!

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