Activities: Make Your Your Own Victorian Wassail Punch
The wassail punch was traditionally served to carolling groups after their singing was done. They'd be invited into the Victorian home to warm themselves and drink from the wassail bowl. The recipes varied from family to family, but the most important element was that it be hot to get rid of the winter chill.
6 small apples, washed, cores removed
1 litre/1 pint 15¼fl oz beer or cider
2 cinnamon sticks, crushed using a mortar and pestle
2 pinches ground cloves
freshly grated nutmeg, to taste
1 lemon, sliced
To sweeten the wassail punch, add 500g/1lb 2oz of sugar to the beer or cider before heating it.
Serves 4-6 people
Preheat the oven to 190C/375F/Gas 5.
Score each apple around the middle using a sharp knife.
Place the apples into an ovenproof dish and roast in the oven for 45-50 minutes, or until the apples have softened and the skins are beginning to split.
Meanwhile, heat the beer or cider in a saucepan over a low heat. Add the spices, stir well, and continue to heat through until the surface of the liquid starts to foam.
Add the lemon slices and roasted apples, then serve whilst hot.
National Archives: Victorian Britain
History in Focus: The Victorian Era
Victoria and Albert Museum
The Victorian Web
British Library: Online Exhibition: Victorian Britain
Pollock's Toy Museum