Tomorrow’s Stir Up Sunday. Get cooking

Food & Cooking

I blame the Church of England. Tomorrow is Stir Up Sunday, the day when all right-thinking people in Britain will dig out their dried fruits and candied peels, their sticky, treacly dark sugars, eggs, butter, spices, zesty lemons, brandy, weigh them out and mix them all together. They’ll bring the family into the kitchen, get everyone to stir the mixture, making a wish as they do so.

And why? Because as they kneel at their devotions in church at Morning Service, those Good Ladies of the Parish will hear the priest intone the Collect for the Sunday Next Before Advent ….

Stir up, we beseech thee, O Lord, the wills of thy faithful people….

‘Stir up? Stir up? I haven’t made the pudding yet! Best go home and make the Christmas pudding’

You might not be a Good Lady of the Parish. You might not even be a Good Lady. But you’d better get on with making that pudding tomorrow. I’m telling you today so you can nip out and buy anything you might not have to hand. Go to. Stir Up Sunday is the day. Your Christmas depends on it.

For Debbie at Travel with Intent’s Six Word Saturday

54 thoughts on “Tomorrow’s Stir Up Sunday. Get cooking

  1. Tell me…do you actually like Christmas pudding? I only ask because my memory of actually eating one is quite dim, and I wonder if it really worth such a stir, despite the tradition. 🧐

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    1. Dunno what the villages round you are like, but round here, they’re entirely innocent of horny handed sons and daughters of toil. Not a farm hand in sight! So how realistic the Archers is these days ….

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  2. I’m already singing the Archers theme tune in my head, though I can’t remember the last time I listened in. Love the fierce concentration on William’s face. Wonder if he could make me one? I’m totally inept. And you did make me smile with this! Late here today as we had a power shut down this morning following a huge electrical storm. I will, however, be going to church at 6 to Listen to Bella ACapella. And for supper, of course.

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  3. Aha, for once I’m ahead of the game! Thanks to the London lock down last Christmas we didn’t have our usual gathering with my sister and her family, so the pudding I’d made remained untouched and is in the cupboard awaiting (hopefully) this year’s celebrations. But i must get on with the cake soon!

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  4. My mother still makes the Christmas puddings and has already done the one and only pudding this year. She prefers not to wait for stir-up Sunday. She made her usual four puddings last year but not all got eaten as she couldn’t give my sister her one. I do like Christmas pudding but a little goes a long way, I find. We don’t have Christmas cake any more. Better to make a cake during the dreary months of January and February.
    My goodness, hasn’t William grown and what a diligent baker he is!
    With reference to comments above we do still have farm hands lurking in our villages. A few older, traditional types in odd hats and indescribable trousers but farm-hands are mainly young boys/men all inter-related and who drive the machinery at terrifying speeds down our lanes and can manage all the necessary farming computer stuff with no problem at all.

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    1. We love all the Christmas baking, and it’s great that it lasts all through the long dreary winter because, as you say, a little goes a long way. Yes, William’s six now and quite grown up in some ways. So glad that your villages remain at least to some extent traditional. There must be some here too, but I don’t know where!

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  5. I actually do like Christmas pudding, but a little goes a long way. Last year I made a cake for the first time in about 20 years – we finished it off in the summer, and only because I had to switch off the freezer for a replacement. I shan’t bother again. M&S make a decent small slab!

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    1. You don’t keep your cake in the freezer do you? We ‘fed’ ours in brandy, and it can last a year or more that way. I love making the Christmas and Easter stuff – I made my Simnel cake at the same time as the Christmas cakes. The best part of Christmas!

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    1. You do. It does divide the world. You can imagine that English Christmas cooking is not a hit with Emily’s partner. The Spanish, oddly, seem not to ‘do’ dried fruit. Not our sort, anyway.

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  6. Bought memories of Mum and her making the pud. She even saved a few of the old coins every year and put three-pence, five-pence and a couple of shillings in, she paid out in dollars and cents so they could go back in the next Christmas

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  7. I’ve never made a Christmas pudding but then I’m not English. However, I do know about Mary Berry and the puddings , from The Great British Baking Show (and I have one of her cookbooks) and we have plenty raisins here. Wish I could send you some (inexpensively, of course.) πŸ™‚ I’ve never made a fruitcake either as I don’t like all that candied fruit, but I’d like to make one with dried fruit sometime. At any rate, we have Thanksgiving to go before we get to Christmas prep although because of long delays in shipping, I’ll be getting the last Christmas packages in the mail in the next week…or at least that’s the plan. Decorations go up after Thanksgiving and I always enjoy having them up.

    janet

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    1. Don’t worry. There was a Great British Dried Fruit Crisis a few weeks ago, but it’s OK now. So … pudding today, then that’s it. I won’t engage with Christmas again until into December. I think Christmas cakes and puddings are peculiarly English – nobody else seems to like them. I do understand that, even though I love them myself.

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      1. Phew! πŸ™‚ When Covid got going, there were shortages on things I wouldn’t have thought about, such as tapioca pearls, which I use for thickening the juice in the crockpot meal but that others use in pies, and yeast. Thank goodness things are mostly back to normal, although prices on most things have gone up.

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  8. I love that William is making the Christmas cake. My mom made sure we all knew how to cook and bake. It’s a wonderful skill to have! I never heard of ‘stir up!” but maybe it’s not a term used here. I like the concept though!

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  9. Christmas cake and pudding are no more here. My sister has finally stopped making puddings as fewer people appreciate them, but she’s still doing cake. I used to do it all when my mother was alive as her grandmother had been a cakes and pudding cook in a local cafΓ© in the war and we had a family pudding recipe passed down in her handwriting.

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    1. Oh, that’s special. Don’t lose it, even if you don’t use it. I think these Christmas treats will die the death as fewer people enjoy them. None of my ‘children’ eat them – apart from mince pies.

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