Today, February the 2nd, it is "Candlemas", "Chandeleur" or "St Bride's Day" (depending on how you call this day), the Christian festival that commemorates the purification of the Virgin Mary and the presentation of the infant Jesus in the Temple.
This feast originates from the Celts and Pagans who celebrate(d) "Imbolc" (see link) on the 1st of February, thus marking the beginningss of Spring and the coming back of light. It is also known under the name of "Brigid" or "Feast Of Lights".
Canada also celebrates "Groundhog Day" on that very day.
At the same time, here (Switzerland), in the Lötschental Valley (Valais/Wallis), we have a unique and terrifying local custom which takes place and involves the so-called "Tschäggättä" (see video) or "Wild Men". They are frightening ugly figures wearing furs and sinister carved wooden masks that roam through the valley and streets under the cover of darkness, preying on unsuspecting victims, ringing large cowbells and tossing soot at their unsuspecting victims. They are heathen relics of an old worship cult/tradition which was meant to scare away the spirits of winter as well as to symbolize the return of the ancestors who give out praise or punishment to the living.
For many people, religious or non-religious alike, this day is also the feast of "Pancakes" (see link) and it is a very good excuse to stuff yourself with gorgous tasting "French/American Pancakes" 'till your literally explode!!!
Of course, it is not the only time of the year during which you can have a "Pancake" party, but it is nonetheless the best way to honor this delicious treat...
For those who want to celebrate "Candlemas", I thought that it would be a good idea to give you "Pancake" recipes and links that will rejoice your gourmet palate.
My recipes (sorry for the mediocre quality of my -old- pictures):
French Pancakes (see recipe)
American Pancakes (see recipe)
Tatsch From Grisons/Graubünden (see recipe)
Interesting recipe links:
All Recipes (see link)
Awakened Woman (see link)
Bellaonline (see link)
Epicurious (see link)
Family Fun (see link)
Food Network (see link)
Recipezaar (see link)
Suite 101 (see link)
The Craft Nook (see link)
The World Wide Gourmet (see link)
(Saint-Brigid Pic by Theresa Lucero)
(Lichtmess In Lötschental Pic by www.myswitzerland.com)
(Tschäggättä Pic by http://hitomiiie.free.fr)