It's not known exactly when the practise came into tradition however we know that the word 'wassail' is Old English and more than likely predates the Norman conquest of 1066.
“Wassaile the trees, that they may beare / You many a Plum and many a Peare: / For more or lesse fruits they will bring, / As you do give them Wassailing" is the song that you sing as you dance and weave around the apple trees, banging and clanging anything on hand to ward off the evil spirits. It's really quite fun, especially with a warm cardamon cider in your hand, the stars twinkling down on you and the fire warming you from the outside.
Tips of the week:
1. Juice of citric fruits decreases in intensity very quickly. Always juice last!
2. Roux (mixture of butter and flour) keeps in the fridge for weeks.
3. If you are making Yorkshire Puddings, make sure the tray with a little oil at bottom is hot.