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The origin of the mince tart begins with the medieval pastry, chewette, which was either fried or baked. The ‘chewette’ actually contained liver or chopped meat mixed with boiled eggs and ginger. Dried fruit and sweet ingredients would be added to the chewette's filling for variety. By the 16th century, 'mince' or shred pie was considered a Christmas specialty. However, in the 17th century, Oliver Cromwell made eating mince tarts on Christmas Day illegal. In the mid-17th century the liver and chopped meat was replaced by suet and, by the 19th century, meat products were generally no longer used in both North America and Great Britain.

Folklore states that mince tarts are a favourite food of Father Christmas, and that one or two should be left on a plate at the foot of the chimney (along with a small glass of brandy, sherry or milk, and a carrot for the reindeer) as a thank-you for well-filled stockings. British tradition demands that the mince filling mixture should only be stirred in a clockwise direction. To stir it anticlockwise is to bring bad luck for the coming year. Tradition also says that you should make a wish while eating your first mince tart of the festive season and that mince tarts should always be eaten in silence. Eating at least one mince tart on each of the twelve days of Christmas is thought by some people to bring luck for the coming year. Mince tarts often have a star on top, to represent the Christmas Star, which Christians believe led the Magi to the baby Jesus in Bethlehem.

Our take on Christmas mince tarts is a little simpler – they are delicious small treats to be enjoyed by all. With the Bakers Four Club to back you up, you can get even more to share around. With a guarantee of only the highest quality ingredients, you can be sure to fall in love with our mince tarts this Christmas.

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