The Chrismologist's Advent Calendar - Day 23

Thursday 23 December 2010

If you're anything like me, I'm sure you're up to your neck in preparations for Christmas. But amidst all the fuss and panic, why not take some time out tomorrow to enjoy a traditional Christmas Eve drink.

Posset was drunk on Christmas Eve to get the seasonal merry-making under way. It was made by combining hot milk with spices, lemon and sugar, as well as oatcake and bread. The posset was traditionally taken with a spoon. Good luck befell the fortunate youth or maiden who drew out the lucky coin (or even wedding-ring!) which had been dropped in the posset-pot!

During the 19th century, on Christmas Eve, it was the custom to offer each carolling guest a posset cup and a piece of apple pie or tart. This recipe serves 8-10.


4 cups of milk
4 tbs sugar
4 slices of toast
1 tsp cinnamon
4 cups of beer (preferably ale)

Heat the milk, sugar, and toast in a saucepan, taking care not to let it boil. Stir the cinnamon and beer together in a large bowl. Discard the toast, pour the hot milk over the ale and stir. It is best served still warm.


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