Shrove Tuesday, also known as pancake day, is the traditional feast day before the start of Lent on Ash Wednesday.
Lent, the 40 days leading up to Easter, was traditionally a time of fasting, so Shrove Tuesday, which is always 47 days before Easter Sunday, was the last opportunity to use up eggs and fats before embarking on the Lenten fast – and pancakes were the perfect way of using up these ingredients.
This tradition has continued for centuries, and local couple, Dorothy and Es Hoepner, have been quite happy to carry it on too!
“We used to visit our neighbours years ago, the Osters, on Shrove Tuesday, and share pancakes,” Dorothy said.
“We’d make an evening meal of them – two courses with savoury then sweets pancakes.”
Es and Dorothy had also been the movers and shakers of pancake mixing and cooking at the Lutheran Church in Balaklava for about 25 years.
“We’ve cooked pancakes there for Shrove Tuesday with our congregation, but due to COVID restrictions, this will be the first year in about 25 years that we haven’t done it,” they said.
“Back in 1995, we made about 300 pancakes for the first pancake tea at the Lutheran Hall.”
Dorothy said their pancakes were cooked in a flat pan then topped with meat or other savoury delights, and folded over – almost like an omelette.
“You can really put whatever topping on them you like,” she said.
“With the sweet pancakes, fresh fruit that’s in season is best, or jam, and of course you can have cream or icecream on top!”
Es and Dorothy have shared their recipe for readers to try, so give your family a treat on Shrove Tuesday, February 16.