Christmas Characters - Composting at Christmas
Wednesday, 5 December 2012 | HOTBIN Composting
12 Days of HOTBIN Composting
If you ask a child to list things associated with Christmas, then Santa and Snowmen would probably feature very highly alongside presents of course.
Father Christmas / Santa
Traditionally on Christmas Eve Santa/Father Christmas is left a mince pie and a glass of his favourite tipple, usually Sherry. Dating back to the 13th century, mince pies were filled with savoury mincemeat, fruits and spices and were brought back by the European crusaders from the Holy Land. English antiquary John Timbs saw the addition of the fruits and spices as offerings from the Middle East and although today’s recipe is a lot sweeter, the spices remain.
Whether you leave a savoury or sweet mince pie please bear in mind that if Santa doesn’t eat it all then this can be added to the HOTBIN - not too many though or he might end up with a portly belly!
Oh and don’t forget poor Rudolf’s carrot and if he’s full up by the time he gets to your house and just has a nibble you can chop it up and add that to your HOTBIN, after all no-one wants a carrot that’s been half munched by a reindeer.
Snowmen date all the way back to medieval times. With coal for eyes and a mouth, stick arms and a carrot nose, balls of snow are magically brought to life as The Snowman we all know today. However once he melts all that is left are the constituent parts plus maybe the hat and scarf he once had.
Never one for waste, HOTBIN would suggest you chop up the sticks and carrot; the sticks are a bonus and will also provide aeration in the bin. We don’t advise adding coal as this won’t break down, instead put this to better use on your fire to keep warm.
As for the hat and scarf, if these are made of natural fibres (cotton, wool) then unbelievably you can add them into the HOTBIN (very small quantities). They will take a long time to break down but will eventually compost, so if you do decide to add them we would recommend pulling them apart so you only have fibres to add to the bin.
As it’s freely available all year round why do we associate gingerbread with Christmas? Although it’s believed that gingerbread was first baked in the 11th century, it is known in the 17th century that gingerbread bakers belonged to baker guilds and it was only these guild members who were allowed to bake gingerbread throughout the year, the rest could only bake it during Christmas. This is widely regarded as the link between gingerbread and Christmas.
So if you’ve become a little over-enthusiastic with the gingerbread baking this year and made a whole gingerbread family, any leftovers you have can be broken up and will be happily accepted by the HOTBIN.