The third Sunday in Advent is known as Gaudete Sunday, from the Latin for Rejoice, and is a Refreshment Sunday, when fasting was relaxed midway through the penitential period. The equivalent Sunday in Lent is Mothering Sunday.
So today is a good day for eating mince pies, perhaps made to Hannah Glasse’s recipe: ‘To make mince pies the best way’ in her book The Art of Cookery made Plain and Easy (1747). For the fillings in the pies the recipe lists apples, currants, sugar, spices and citrus peel along with a quantity of alcohol. More unusually, meat is also included, as shown in the recipe below.
The Art of Cookery was another of the books shown during the Special Collections & Archives visit for the Mr Seel’s Garden Connected Communities AHRC project.