Sunday, April 23, 2017

3 Interesting Christmas Pudding Traditions

Christmas Pudding Traditions As we’ve discussed in previous posts on this blog, the origin of the christmas or plum pudding goes back centuries and is steeped in tradition. In fact, this delicious sweet has evolved in many ways here in Australia and the ways we serve and enjoy it are quite different than in Europe for instance. Through its history, many different traditions and customs have emerged, some of which we still observe today. Let’s take a look at some of the most memorable and well-known christmas pudding traditions.

Stir up Sunday

Most of pudding traditions find their origins a few hundred years ago, where cooking up a plum pudding became an important part of the Christmas season.
Much like today, Christmas puddings were enjoyed in the lead up to Christmas as well as on the day of Christmas itself. ‘Stir up Sunday’ as it came to be known, was a day a few weeks before Christmas on which many families would prepare their puddings for the festive season.

This was something of a special day of togetherness for families who would gathered in their kitchens and were actively involved in the pudding-making process.


Stir up Sunday itself had some traditions as well.

For instance, everyone in the family - including the servants - would stir the pudding mixture for good luck throughout the day. Stirring the pudding was actually quite hard work, which probably explains how the tradition originated as everyone invariably shared the load.

Each person would make three wishes while stirring up the batter and according to the custom, one of the three would come true in the coming year.

Coins and other items in the pudding

There were a number of traditions pertaining to puddings that centered around the notion of good fortune. Small items would frequently be added to the mixture - from coins to chicken wishbones - with the idea being that whoever’s portion of pudding contained them would receive good luck or wealth for the coming year.

Other items would symbolize something else. For instance, a thimble - generally used for sewing - would be a sign of thrift (or good use of money) for the finder. A ring would foretell of an upcoming marriage in the year ahead and an anchor charm meant that the finder would be safe and protected.

Interestingly, the remnants of these traditions remain to this day. While most people don’t put coins in the pudding itself, some will place sterilised coins under servings of pudding to symbolise good luck. However, nowadays people will often prefer ready-made traditional plum puddings rather than mixing up the batch themselves. There are plenty of great plum pudding options available for order online!