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For The Mothers

03/10/2020 — By Robert Eastham


"Wait, it's Mother's Day already?" says many a confused child. Yes, unlike almost every other holiday on the calendar the US and the UK have two very different days to celebrate mothers. The American version was established on May 10th 1908 as a direct celebration of mothers and the work they do, while the British version stems from the previously-unrelated Mothering Sunday.


Celebrations can be traced back to the ancient Greeks and Romans, who held festivals in honour of the mother goddesses, Rhea and Cybele, but most historians believe that the holiday evolved from (the early Christian festival) Mothering Sunday. Once a major tradition in the United Kingdom and parts of Europe, this celebration fell on Laetare Sunday – the fourth Sunday of Lent, and was seen as a time when one would return to their ‘mother church’ for a special service.


A cynic might say the popularity of Mother's Day mirrors the rise of many other commercialised holidays (ironically, the creator of the American holiday tried to have it rescinded for this very reason) but giving gifts to mothers and mother figures has its roots all the way back in the original Mothering Sunday, when young household servants would pick wild flowers for their mothers on their way home for the day off. 


While most of us love the romanticism of appreciating and honouring our mothers with handmade gifts and cards, realistically we don’t have the time with the busy, modern lives that we now live. That's why we're here to help you out with a fine selection of luxurious goods perfect for gifting. With the warmer months still ahead, there's never been a better time for a delightful picnic basket!


Our products imported exclusively from Cartwright & Butler have something for every mother, whether it's a silky-smooth lemon curd (wonderful as a cake filling), some savoury cheese biscuits or a delicately refined cup of fine English tea. It's not just the products themselves that are divine either, with presentation second to none. Who else will serve up a wondrous selection of treats inside a truly rustic wooden crate, or a masterfully crafted wicker picnic basket?


That why for our mothers who matter, we give Cartwright & Butler. Check it out for yourself and see why it'll be a gift of a lifetime!


~*~


Want to try a traditional Mother's Day treat for yourself? Here's a wonderful recipe from every mother's favourite chef, Paul Hollywood, for some delightfully sweet Mothering Buns.


MAKES 12

FOR THE BUNS

500g strong white bread flour 

1 tsp salt

50g caster sugar

7g sachet instant yeast

50g unsalted butter, diced and softened

300ml water

FOR THE ICING 

200g icing sugar 

2–3 tbsp water


1. Put the flour in a large bowl. Add the salt and sugar on one side, the yeast on the other. Add the butter and three-quarters of the water, then turn the mixture round with the fingers of one hand. Add the remaining water a little at a time, mixing until you have taken in all the flour and the dough is soft and slightly sticky; you might not need all the water.

2. Oil the work surface to stop the dough sticking. Turn out the dough and knead for 5 mins, or until smooth and no longer sticky. Lightly oil the bowl, return the dough to it and cover with cling film. Leave to rise for at least an hour, until doubled in size. Line 2 baking trays with baking parchment.

3. Scrape the dough out of the bowl onto a lightly floured surface and fold it inwards repeatedly until all the air has been knocked out and the dough is smooth. Divide into 12 pieces.

4. Roll each piece into a ball by placing it into a cage formed by your hand on the work surface and moving your hand in a circular motion, rotating the ball rapidly. 

5. Put the balls of dough on the prepared baking trays, spacing them slightly apart. (They should just touch each other when they have risen.) Place each tray in a clean plastic bag and leave to prove for about 40 mins, until the rolls have doubled in size. Heat the oven to 425F.

6. Bake for 10–12 mins, until the rolls are golden and sound hollow when tapped underneath. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. 

7. For the icing, mix the icing sugar with enough water to give a thick but pourable consistency. Dip each roll into the icing and then into the hundreds and thousands.


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