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Showing posts from November, 2016

Celebrate Thanksgiving with mincemeat pie

It’s almost Thanksgiving Day here in the States, and this year I plan to distract myself from my post-election malaise by preparing a traditional Thanksgiving feast for my family and friends. So, along with cooking other delicacies I’ll roast a turkey, boil fresh cranberries with sugar to make a thick, sweet sauce, and bake a traditional pumpkin pie, to be served with generous dollops of whipped cream. My guests would feel cheated if I omitted any of those dishes.
But there'll be an addition to the menu this year. I’ve decided to resurrect a tradition from my past and make a mincemeat pie. Mincemeat pie is not a universal Thanksgiving treat, like pumpkin pie. It's an acquired taste, and some people won’t touch it. Even apple and pecan pie are better appreciated holiday desserts. But when I was growing up, it wasn’t Thanksgiving without at least one mincemeat pie.
How does mincemeat pie fit on a blog about Regency England? Well, I did some research and discovered that mincemeat …

The Despard Plot: Another Reason to Remember November

There must be something about the month of November and plots to kill the British king. The dastardly treason of Guy Fawkes and his band of conspirators is well-known, and the foiling of that plot is still celebrated 400 years after the event, marked with fireworks, parades and bonfires throughout Great Britain on November 5.
But what about Edward Despard? Where’s his bonfire?
Here’s what happened: in the fall of 1802 Colonel Edward Marcus Despard, a decorated Irish officer of the British Army who fought for the Crown during the American War of Independence, friend of Horatio Nelson, and for a time the designated superintendent of what would become the British Honduras, allegedly conspired to kill King George III.
On November 16, a week before the assassination was supposed to take place, Despard was arrested and charged with high treason. After a trial he was condemned to die by hanging, drawing and quartering, the last person in Britain to ever receive such a severe and painfully redu…