St. Pancake’s Day

The Daily Mash alerts us to today’s solemn holiday, honoring Saint Pancake:

Millions remember the martyrdom of Saint Pancake

Christians worldwide are remembering the martyrdom of St Pancake of Antioch, who was stuffed full of hot cheese, fried and repeatedly thrown into the air around 530 AD.

(Hat tip to Michael Carden.)

Yes, it’s Shrove Tuesday — Mardi Gras — Fat Tuesday — Pancake Day in many places — Fas(t)nacht [Doughnut] Day in the land of my childhood. Some discussion here on the occasion of last year’s celebration.

If you want a waffle holiday rather than a pancake one, you’ll need to wait until March 25, International Waffle Day:

Waffle Day is a tradition that is celebrated in Sweden, and to a lesser extent elsewhere, on March 25. Waffles are typically eaten on this day. The name comes from Vårfrudagen (“Our Lady’s Day”), which in vernacular Swedish sounds almost like Våffeldagen (waffle day). Our Lady’s Day is celebrated on March 25 (nine months before Christmas), the Christian holiday of Annunciation, and the Waffle Day is hence celebrated on the same day although it has no religious connections to Our Lady’s Day. (link)

(Nice reinterpretation.)

Or you could wait until August 24, National Waffle Day in the U.S.:

[August 24, 2010] Hey, guess what? It’s National Waffle Day! The “holiday” marks the anniversary of the first U.S. patent for a waffle iron, which Cornelius Swarthout received on August 24, 1869. (link)

(Antic posting on waffles and waffle irons, not to mention gnocchi, here.)

And then on September 26th comes National Pancake Day, one of those U.S. food holidays apparently invented by the food industry:

The calendar is packed with celebrations of particular things. Why, there’s even a site listing American food holidays, one or more for almost every day of the year: National Whipped Cream Day on January 5, National Stuffed Mushroom Day on February 4, …, National Lobster Newburg Day on March 25, and so on. The site doesn’t explain the source of any of these events. (link)

In case you were wondering, today, February 21st, is National Sticky Bun Day (as an alternative to pancakes or doughnuts).

To further confuse things, IHOP (which used to be the International House of Pancakes) has its own National Pancake Day, on which it gives out free pancakes (and contributes profits from the things people actually pay for to charity). For some years, IHOP’s Free Pancake Day was in fact Shrove Tuesday, but last year it was a week before Mardi Gras, and this year it’s a week after it (February 28th). So in a week’s time you can have pancakes again (even though that will be during Lent).

Sadly, there seems to be no National Latke Day or National Potato Pancake Day, so you’ll just have to wait for Hanukkah and your local Latkepalooza event.

Meanwhile, since it’s Mardi Gras, you can listen to the song “Iko Iko”, put on your mask and costume, wear your beads, dance in the street, and gorge on New Orleans food (beignets, of course, but also gumbo, jambalaya, red beans and rice, cheese grits, po’boys, crawfish pie, etc.) and drink Hurricanes.


3 Responses to “St. Pancake’s Day”

  1. John Lawler Says:

    Not to mention yesterday’s Latke-Hamantash Debate at MIT.–Hamantash_Debate

  2. Martyrdom « Arnold Zwicky's Blog Says:

    […] reference to the martyrdom of St. Pancakes inspired me to investigate Jewish martyrs to the Inquisition, in particular the martyr Latka of […]

  3. The classic owl joke | Arnold Zwicky's Blog Says:

    […] [Note on St. Pancake's Day, from 2012, here.] […]

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