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Posted by on 23rd Oct 2017 11:24am

A Halloween Treat; pork pies and a pumpkin rice recipe! 🎃

A Halloween Treat; pork pies and a pumpkin rice recipe! 🎃

We celebrate the 31st October every year – but why? It’s an annual holiday which holds its roots in European traditions. The ancient Celtic festival, Samhain, is where Halloween has come from. Samhain meant people would light bonfires and wear costumes to ward off ghosts. All Saints Day was announced by Pope Gregory III to honour the dead, soon the night before became known as All Hallows Eve. The date of the end of October has always marked the end of the harvest and the beginning of a long cold winter – a time associated with human death since they didn’t have the same luxuries as we do today to carry them through the cold days and nights. Celts believed it was this night that the boundaries between the living and the dead were blurred and the ghosts of the dead were welcomed to walk on earth on this night.

The ghosts were suspected of causing trouble and damaging crops, but more than this – they could make predictions for the future and since the people were very dependent on the volatile natural world at this point, it was a point of comfort during these long days.

Today, Halloween in America has grown to the second largest commercial holiday after Christmas – Americans spend an estimated annual $6 billion a year on the holiday. Traditionally, when ghosts were thought to come back to earth and they feared encountering them, people would wear masks when they left home after dark to ensure they wouldn’t be recognised – hoping ghosts would mistake them for fellow spirits. Food would be placed outside of homes to make the ghosts happy and stop them from entering the house.

How are you spending the day? We’ll be avoiding black cats, ladders, ghosts of the dead and eating our weight in our latest recipes and the trick or treat chocolate…

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