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The figgey pudding of ‘We wish you a merry Christmas’ originated in the Middle Ages. It was a dish of dried figs stewed in wine and very often served in Lent, along with the fish course. The fourteenth-century cookery book Diuersa Seruicia gives a recipe: ‘Take figs and boil them in wine, and pound them in a mortar with bread. Mix it up with good wine; boil it. Add good spices and whole raisins. Dress it; decorate it with pomegranate seeds on top.’

Subjects: Medicine and Health — Cookery, Food, and Drink.

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