Traditions on Monday
~ Traditional Easter Marbled Pace Eggs ~
Pace Eggs is a very old British tradition and method of colouring and dying eggs to be boiled and eaten on Good Friday and throughout the Easter weekend. There are commercial dyes available nowadays, but I still prefer the traditional natural methods of colouring my Easter Pace Eggs – onions skins (and also spinach & beetroot water). The name Pace is thought to derive from the French word for Easter, Pâques…and in some parts of Britain – mainly Lancashire in the North West, these eggs are rolled down a hill, the winner being the owner of the egg which goes the furthest and has the least cracks or breaks in it. It is also traditional to give one of these eggs to each person who visits your home throughout the Easter period – what a wonderful alternative to the commercially over packaged chocolate eggs.
Another Easter tradition, usually found in the North of England, is the practice is Pace Egg Plays. Pace Egg Plays are traditional village plays, with the traditional Easter rebirth theme, where St George vanquishes all the potential challengers and the fool, “Toss Pot”, rejoices. These plays takes the form of a classic combat between “goodie” (hero) and “baddie” (villain), in which the hero is killed and then brought back to life, invariably by a character called the “quack doctor”. Sadly, many Pace Egg plays died out after the Great War (The First World War), as so many of the men who took part in them were killed in action, however, the plays have enjoyed a remarkable renaissance in recent years, with the most famous taking place in Heptonsall, in West Yorkshire.
But back to my eggs, I am posting this recipe for Pace Eggs today, as I suddenly realised that Good Friday is just under three weeks away, and I am hoping to share lots of traditional Easter recipes with you over the next few weeks…….so you can get menu planning! I am lucky enough to be able to use my lovely chicken’s eggs for these pace eggs, all free-range with deep golden-yellow yolks, wonderful Easter eggs in all respects. I hope you enjoy making these pace eggs this Easter; I know that children especially enjoy getting involved, and I remember my daughter’s face when having helped to wrap the eggs in leaves and onion skins, on being taken out of the pan the patterned and marbled eggs emerged – her face was a joy to behold! See you later with some BACON recipes……..and other treats! Karen