30 April 2015, The Tablet

Happy birthday!

In the early days of my Tablet column, I wrote about feast days in the Catholic calendar. I bought a copy of the Oxford Dictionary of Saints, and set about discovering foods and recipes linked to the saints’ feast days. Looking back, it was some of the best fun I have had in food journalism. Not all saints’ days are celebrated with a feast or specific dish but many have a connection of some kind. I discovered that the martyr St Margaret Clitherow lived in the Shambles, the city of York’s street of butchers, giving way to a feast of mutton; and that plaster models of San Gennaro (Januarius), the patron saint of Naples and protector from the dangers of the volcano Vesuvius, could be found in every pizzeria in the city, protector amid the heavenly scent of wood-fired baking
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