22 Dec '12, 1am
A cracker of an idea
It’s the question soon to be asked at every table in Britain “Shall we pull the crackers before, or after dinner?” This curious tradition of pulling on a roll of coloured paper was invented in London 165 years ago by Tom Smith. Starting work at an ornamental confectioners Tom would experiment on producing more sophisticated designs of wedding cake decorations than was being sold by his employers. It wasn’t long before he branched out on his own setting up business in Goswell Road producing confectionery products. Travelling widely in 1840 on a trip to Paris he discovered the ‘’Bon Bon’, a sugared almond wrapped in a twist of tissue paper. This simple confection which proved popular in London at Christmas would evolve into the cracker we know today. H is next improvement to the French ‘Bon Bon’ was to wrap a small love motto inside the tissue paper as a means to extend the ...