Demand for readymade pancakes and pancake mixes has more than doubled year-on-year ahead of this year’s Shrove Tuesday, according to leading supermarket Tesco.
According to Christian tradition, today is the day that the religion’s followers empty out the contents of their food cupboards and fatten up ahead of the fast period of Lent.
Over recent years people of all faiths and beliefs have joined in the tradition by cooking eggs, milk and butter in a pan to create pancakes, but Tesco believes that as many as 15 million will cheat this year by buying ready-made mixture or completely pre-made pancakes.
Today alone Tesco is anticipating selling five million products for cheats, with the top seller being a pancake shaker to which only water needs to be added.
Tesco spokesman Trevor Datson said: “For centuries Brits prided themselves with their pancake tossing abilities on Shrove Tuesday and in every town and village there would be a greatly heralded pancake race.
“However, the great tradition of pancake making and tossing soon looks like being consigned to history as nowadays society tries to make everything simpler.
“Judging by sales more and more people now rather just heat up a ready made pancake rather than risk making a mess in the kitchen.”
The popularity of the fatty food does not seem to be a thing of the past however with fellow supermarket Asda reporting that it expects sales of pancake-related products to be up 25 per cent on last year.
Asda says the classic ingredients of lemon and sugar are still the nation’s favourite, closely followed by chocolate spread.
Pancakes have featured as a part of Shrove Tuesday since the middle of the 15th century, and with their popularity remaining undiminished through time, there is set to be plenty of batter tossing tonight - despite all the cheats.