Merry Meet my friends. I have been so busy I’m very late coming to my blog to write about my favorite Sabbat! It should come as no surprise to anyone that it’s my favorite. I’m a Witch after all! Samhain is the Witch’s New Year, the night the veil between the worlds is the thinnest, the night we can commune with our ancestors who have passed on, and of course, it’s the night many Witches love to put on all of their witchiest clothes, jewelry and of course our pointy hat! For me, this year, it’s also Beggar’s Night. Little ones will be coming to my door looking for candy (my grandkids will be doing that here too!) The leaves are falling, the nights are cold and crisp, the wind blows, pumpkins are lit, adults and kids alike shiver with both a little bit of excitement and a little bit of something magickal!
For Samhain night, my family will gather here for dinner, a fire and of course to pass out candy and for the grandkids to go trick or treating in my neighborhood. After the little goblins have gone home with their parents, I will do my own quiet ritual. Divination to hopefully have my ancestors come thru to me will be done. Also, an offering to Mother Earth as she slowly quiets and goes to rest for the Winter. I also always express my gratitude to God and Goddess for the abundant Summer and beautiful Autumn season of growth and harvest both in my garden beds but within me as well. As the Wheel turns, I too change and grow…no matter how old I am…I still do.
On Saturday night, my Circle will gather in full Witch regalia for fire, feast, and ritual. Dressing the part is such fun for Samhain, as of course, we don’t walk around in black dresses, striped socks and pointy hats on a regular basis 🙂 We will honor our loved ones who have passed on, including our beloved pets. We also will have quiet discussion together on what the past year has brought for each of us, and what we look forward to in the next year. On Sunday evening, my hubby and daughter and I will have a Dumb Supper or Ancestor Supper. This will be a quiet and introspective evening for me especially. I always look forward to the fun and busyness of this Sabbat…but it’s the quiet times that have depth of meaning. The quiet can bring messages from our ancestors, from Goddess and from our own conscience. Always find time to be quiet and still and to listen.
One of my most popular blogs here over the years, has been my Samhain Recipes. I’d like to go ahead and give you a few this year too. If you have been following Samhain’s Sirens this year (button on the right side here) you will have already seen these recipes…but I will share them again here for those who haven’t.
Autumn’s Spiced Apple Cider
*The perfect Samhain drink….add rum or vodka if you wish 🙂
1 gallon apple cider
15 whole cloves
10 whole allspice
1 TB candied ginger
12 cinnamon sticks
1 cup packed brown sugar
Combine all ingredients except sugar and bring to a boil in a large pot on the stove. Lower heat, add sugar and simmer 15-20 minutes. Strain and serve or place in a thermos for your picnic or drive. You can keep it warm on the stove or crockpot all day long. Store the leftovers in the fridge.
*If you like, place orange slices in the pot too..adds a sweet bit of tang!!
These little toasted Crostini are a wonderful appetizer to serve for any Samhain gathering! They are sweet and wonderful. Great for an after dinner treat too!
1 loaf French bread, thinly sliced
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
13.2 oz pkg Brie cheese, thinkly sliced
3 Granny Smith apples, cored and sliced
Arrange bread on an ungreased baking sheet; bake at 350* until lightly toasted. Set aside.
Mix together butter, sugar and walnuts. Top each slice of bread with a cheese slice, an apple slice and a teaspoonful of butter mixture.
Return to baking sheet; bake briefly until cheese melts. *Makes 24-30
**Variations….a sugared pecan with a drizzle of honey to top it…or a nice dollop of apple butter!
Farmer’s Market Autumn Stew
*A great way to finish up your Summer harvest or that last visit to the Farmers Market veggies!
1/2 lb stew beef, cut into small cubes
2 1/2″ thick boneless pork chops, cubed
1 TB olive oil
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
2 parsnips, peeled and chopped
2 potatoes, peeled and chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
2 apples, cored, peeled and cut into small cubes
2 TB quick-cooking tapioca, uncooked
1 cup apple cider
1 cup water
2 tsps beef bouillon granules
1/4 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp dried thyme
1/4 tsp dried rosemary
Salt to taste
Brown beef and pork in oil in a large skillet over medium heat; drain. Place vegetables and apples in a slow cooker; sprinkle with tapioca. Add beef and pork.
Combine remaining ingredients in a small bowl; pour over beef and pork. Cover and cook on low setting for 8-10 hours or on high for 4-5 hours. Add salt to taste before serving.
*Makes 6 servings
Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Cake
1 15 oz can of pumpkin
4 eggs, beaten
1 cup vegetable oil
2 cups sugar
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsps baking powder
2 tsps baking soda
2 tsps ground cinnamon
12 oz bag of semi-sweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350* In a large bowl, mix together pumpkin, eggs, oil and sugar. Mix in flour, baking powder, baking soda and cinnamon. Stir in half the chocolate chips. Pour batter into a greased and floured Bundt pan. Sprinkle remaining chips over batter.
Bake at 350* for one hour, or until golden brown and inserted toothpick tests clean. Cool then remove from pan. Top with fresh whipped cream to serve if you wish.
*Makes 12-16 servings.
Hope you enjoy the recipes if you try them. I think you will!
I have gotten my Samhain altar done finally today. I particularly love Samhain altars. This one literally gives me goosebumps. Most of the time my altars are outdoors…simple and only a few necessities, but for Samhain, I love to go all out! As you can see 🙂
I’m working on writing up the rituals for my Circle gathering, and have a few cards to do yet. But I am also very relaxed, using the fire in the fireplace to help me meditate, and again…..finding quiet time. I hope you’re doing the same. What loved one do you hope to hear from? What will you decide to let go in the old year and bring forth in the New Year? Think on these things my friends. Witch or not!
And finally, a favorite poem….I’ve posted it before but wanted to share again. Can’t you just feel the magick when you read it? Blessed Samhain to you all…..Happy New Year!
The wheel has turned, the wheel of light
stoke the fire and make it bright
Samhain call, Samhain come
feel the rhythm , hear the drum
The veil it thins, the veil it shrouds
the spirits rise upon darkened cloud
The time of orange , time of black
time to move forward and not look back
Pumpkin lit , with candle burn
away dark spirits this guardian turns
Night of the ancients, night of the olds
remembered in stories now to be told
The Crone doth rise upon this night
look into the shadows without a fright
Rituals and rites across the lands
empowers the soul where they stand
Trick or treat, heal or curse ,
the hand should be crossed from a silver purse
The Wheel begins its time anew,
the release of the old for the knowledgeable few
The time to scry to see the path we must take
and of the choices we need to make
She comes to us in many guises
the Crow and the owl her favourite disguises
The Earth gives us her last to give
the bountiful harvest so we can live
We feast and drink in a sacred space
behind samhain masks to hide our face
Through darkened day and moonlight night
All hallows Eve is a beautiful sight!
(C) Copyright Phiona Hutton July 2010
Blessings and Love, Autumn