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Winter Solstice/Yule Recipes 2011……

Merry Meet friends!  I can’t believe that the Solstice is just a few days away and Christmas right behind!  I’m not as ready as I’d like to be.  Some shopping yet to do, grocery and gifts, and lots of wrapping to do!  But my cards are done, most of the shopping is done, menu is planned, some cookies have been baked and I’ll hopefully get my altar done this weekend.  I need to pick up a couple more things for it.  I have been pretty under the weather for too many weeks, and that is slowing me down quite a bit :(.  While I’m relaxing tonight, I thought I’d post some recipes that we love to have for our holiday dinner..no matter which one you celebrate!  Our weather here has been so so…pretty gloomy, quite a bit of rain, and quite warm..or really cold.  I’d love to see some snow.  We have had a night or two of flurries but nothing sticking yet.  I’m so anxious to see a good amount of snow on the ground! 

 I’m sitting by the fire tonight,   having a glass of wine, and dealing with some emotions from a sad day.  One of my sisters…a Witch sister..suffered the loss of her dear husband yesterday.  My heart is broken for her… as are the hearts of All of her circle of friends.  We are sad for her, worried for her and want so badly to be there for her.  Such a helpless feeling when there is distance between our homes.  But there is no distance between our hearts and our love for her..and we are sending her love, comfort and strength to help her through this very sad, difficult time.  Blessed Be Cheryl. I love you. 

So, to move on with the recipes.  I’ll start with my Winter Solstice altar recipes…I especially love these!  Many of my favorite scents are during this time of year.  Pine, Cedar, Orange, Cinnamon, Clove….yummy!  I’ll be making these up soon to enjoy at my altar!

Winter Solstice Oil Blend

 4 drops Pine

 2 dropsOrange

 2 drops Cedar

 2 drops Juniper

 2-3 lumps finely ground Frankincense

This is really a wonderful blend.  Add a piece of clove or cinnamon stick or allspice berry to really spice it up.  It smells so so good!  I just want to take a bath in it!! LOL

 

Winter’s Night Yule Incense

2 parts Juniper berries

2 parts mugwort

1 part cedar

1 part pine resin

1 part evergreen leaves

1 part chopped sweetgrass

½ part rosemary

1/2 part ground cinnamon

I have altered this recipe a bit.  It called for Laurel leaves which in my area are not to be found.  And I just had to add the cinnamon..it’s a must 🙂  You can also add allspice, anise stars (which I love!) and cloves again.  Just grind everything really well..and it will burn great and smell like gingerbread on a holiday tree! 🙂 

 

Ok..on to the good stuff for your Santa belly!

Rum Spiced Egg Nog

 4 cups milk

5 whole cloves

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

12 egg yolks

1 1/2 cups sugar

2 1/2 cups light rum

4 cups light cream

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Directions

Combine milk, cloves, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, and cinnamon in a saucepan, and heat over lowest setting for 5 minutes. Slowly bring milk mixture to a boil.

In a large bowl, combine egg yolks and sugar. Whisk together until fluffy. Whisk hot milk mixture slowly into the eggs. Pour mixture into saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly for 3 minutes, or until thick. Do not allow mixture to boil. Strain to remove cloves, and let cool for about an hour.

Stir in rum, cream, 2 teaspoon vanilla, and nutmeg. Refrigerate overnight before serving

*The “cooked” eggs make this a safer dish from the raw eggs version.  Also…if you like…use 1/2 light rum and 1/2 spiced rum for an even better treat!

 

Spiced Wassail

 2 quarts apple cider

1 1/2 cups orange juice

3/4 cup pineapple juice

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon lemon juice

2 cinnamon sticks (3 inches)

1 dash ground cinnamon

1 dash ground cloves

Directions

In a large saucepan, combine all of the ingredients. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 20-30 minutes. Discard cinnamon sticks. Serve hot in mugs.

(makes 10 cups)

Sugar and Spice Nuts

 3 egg whites

2 tablespoons water

3 cups walnut halves

2 cups pecan halves

1 cup whole unblanched almonds

2 cups sugar

2 tablespoons ground cinnamon

2 teaspoons ground ginger

2 teaspoons grated orange peel

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 teaspoon ground allspice

1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

Directions

In a mixing bowl, beat egg whites and water until frothy. Add nuts; stir gently to coat. Combine the remaining ingredients. Add to nut mixture and stir gently to coat. Spread into two greased 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. baking pans. Bake, uncovered, at 300 degrees F for 20-25 minutes or until lightly browned, stirring every 10 minutes. Cool. Store in an airtight container.

 

Cranberry Meatballs

*A family favorite..we make them often and often double the batch!

Meatballs:

2 lbs ground beef

1 cup crushed corn flakes

1/3 cup dried parsley

2 eggs

2 TB soy sauce

1/4 tsp pepper

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1/3 cup catsup

2 TB dried minced onion

Mix all ingredients well and form into meatballs..cocktail sized.  Place on a jelly roll pan or 2- 9″ x 13″ baking dishes. 

Sauce:

1 – 16oz can cranberry jelly roll

1- 12oz bottle chili sauce

2 TB brown sugar

1 TB lemon juice

Blend together.  Pour over meatballs.  Bake at 350* for 30 mins. 

* I then put these in a warm slow cooker for serving. 

 

Reuben Spread

*Another family favorite!

16ozs shredded swiss cheese

16ozs shredded cheddar cheese

28oz jar Saurkraut, drained

8ozs chopped corned beef (I use Buddig)

1 1/2 cups Hellmans mayo

Mix all ingredients well.  Place in a greased 9″ x 13″ baking dish.  Bake @350* for 45mins to an hour til brown & bubbly.  Serve on rye on pumpernickel party rounds and put out a dish of Thousand Island Dressing 🙂  *This will get inhaled…I promise!!  Great warmed up the next day ..if you have any leftover 🙂

 

 

 

This ham recipe beats the honey hams you go buy!

Tangy Honey Glazed Ham

1 (10 pound) fully-cooked, bone-in ham

1 1/4 cups packed dark brown sugar

1/3 cup pineapple juice

1/3 cup honey

1/3 large orange, juiced and zested

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

Directions

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Place ham in a roasting pan.

In a small saucepan, combine brown sugar, pineapple juice, honey, orange juice, orange zest, Dijon mustard, and ground cloves. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 5 to 10 minutes. Set aside.

Bake ham in preheated oven uncovered for 2 hours. Remove ham from oven, and brush with glaze. Bake for an additional 30 to 45 minutes, brushing ham with glaze every 10 minutes.

 

Cheesy Potato Casserole

*So easy and So good!

1 bag frozen shredded hash browns (slightly thawed so they will spread)

1/2 pint whipping cream

1 stick butter

2-3 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Grease a 9″ x 13″ baking dish.  Layer potatoes then cheese, then potatoes and cheese again.

In a small saucepan, melt butter into whipping cream, stirring so it won’t burn and mix well.  Pour over potatoes and cheese layers.

Bake at 350* for 45 mins or until cheese is melted and browning a bit. 

 

 

Apple Gingerbread Cobbler

14 oz package Gingerbread cake mix, divided

3/4 cup water

1/4 cup brown sugar, packed

1/2 cup butter, softened & divided

1/2 cup chopped pecans

2- 21oz cans apple pie filling

Mix together 2 cups gingerbread mix and water until smooth; set aside.  Stir together remaining gingerbread mix and brown sugar.  Cut in 1/4 cup butter until mixture is crumbly.  Stir in pecans and set aside.

Combine pie filling and remaining 1/4 cup butter in a large saucepan; cook, stirring often, for 5 mins over med heat.  Spoon apple mixture evenly into a greased 11″ x 17″ baking pan.  Spoon gingerbread mix over apples, then sprinkle with pecan crumb mix.

Bake at 375* for 30-35 mins.  Serve warm with ice cream!  Yummy!!

 

Be sure to add lots of fresh veggies and fruits or a salad to round out all the rich, spicy foods.  Finish off with a delicious coffee with Baileys!! 

You won’t find that all of these recipes contain something from the list of correspondences for Yule.  But many of these, as I said, are family favorites I wanted to share.  At my house, we split up the dishes..everybody brings something..so it’s a lot less work for me and I have more time to enjoy the day! 

One thing to remember when you are so busy cooking….is to take the time to put lots of intention into your cooking.  Put love, joy, abundance, harmony, peace and goodwill into your dishes.  Throw in your favorite spices to add the magickal elements you can draw from them.  Put on holiday music or your favorite holiday movies.  Dance, sing, talk with family, have a glass of wine or eggnog.  Keep it simple and you will enjoy it too.  Your family will love your efforts and everyone will enjoy the good food!  Happy Cooking!!

 

“So the shortest day came, and the year died,
And everywhere down the centuries of the snow-white world
Came people singing, dancing,
To drive the dark away.
They lighted candles in the winter trees;
They hung their homes with evergreen;
They burned beseeching fires all night long
To keep the year alive,
And when the new year’s sunshine blazed awake
They shouted, reveling.
Through all the frosty ages you can hear them
Echoing behind us – Listen!!
All the long echoes sing the same delight,
This shortest day,
As promise wakens in the sleeping land:
They carol, fest, give thanks,
And dearly love their friends,
And hope for peace.
And so do we, here, now,
This year and every year.
Welcome Yule!!”
– Susan Cooper, The Shortest Day

 

 

Blessed Yuletide Season, Autumn

Sources:  My recipes, some from the internet.  Pictures from the internet.

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17 Comments

Filed under Family, Holiday, Loose incense recipe, Oil Blend Recipe, Poem, Recipe from my Kitchen, Seasons, Winter, Yule/Winter Solstice/Chrismas

Mabon Recipes…………

Merry Meet on this last day of August!  I’m sure  you all are enjoying the last of the Summer days.  I hope everyone is ok after both the Earthquakes that hit even my area (I didn’t feel it but heard the rumbling and didn’t know what it was) and Hurricane Irene that was so widespread all along the East Coast….worse in some places then expected and not as bad in others as expected.  I have several facebook friends who were impacted and though they have had some trials with flooded basements, downed trees, and massive power outages….everybody is ok I’m happy to say. 

I am also happy to say that Summer is about over here in Ohio.  This has been one of the hottest Summers on record here…way too many days over 90 degrees in July and August.  Here towards the end of August we have had some delightful days that have given me over to thinking about Autumn as you can tell from my last post. There are some signs of Autumn around my yard and around my town as well.  The stores have started decorating for Fall, some trees have started getting some color, the sedums are changing color, mums are in the garden centers, apples are heavy on the trees.  Ground critters are gathering, deer have full antlers, birds are busy at the feeders and geese are gathering.  I just love it!

So as I said in my last post, I’m going to give you some recipes that I think are perfect for Mabon.  Some I have made and some I plan on making.  These are all from my own recipe box or cookbooks.  You will see a theme going I think when you peruse them….:)  I just love cooking and baking in the Fall.  There is something so cozy about the house scented with good foods in the crock pot or the oven or the stovetop.  So here you go with a few wonderful recipes!

Oh, I always start with an oil blend and loose incense recipe for the Sabbat:

Mabon Oil Blend   

 4 drops Rosemary

 4 drops Frankincense

 2 drops Apple

 1 drop Chamomi

  Use 1/8 cup Almond Oil for Base

 

Mabon Loose Incense

2 parts sandalwood

2 parts pine

1 part rosemary

1 part cinnamon

1 part dried apple

1 part dried oak leaf

This Mabon incense recipe is one of my favorites…it just smells incredible!

Ok, now onto the good stuff for our stomachs!

 

Hot Berry Cider

1 gallon apple cider

32 oz bottle cranberry juice cocktail

8 allspice berries

8 whole cloves

2 cinnamon sticks, halved

Combine all ingredients; bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer for 30 mins.  Strain to remove spices; serve. 

 Makes 20 servings.

 

Apple Walnut Coffee Cake

 2 ½ cup all-purpose flour

1 ½ cup brown sugar, packed

¾ cup butter, softened

1 cup chopped walnuts, toasted

1 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp cinnamon

½ tsp salt

1 egg

¾ cup sour cream

1 tsp vanilla

2 apples, cored, peeled and chopped

 Combine flour, brown sugar, and butter with a fork until crumbly; stir in nuts.   Divide mixture in half.  Press one half into the bottom of a buttered 9 ½” springform baking pan to form crust; set aside.  Add baking soda, cinnamon and salt to remaining crumb mixture; mix well.  Make a well in the center; set aside.  Beat egg with sour cream and vanilla in a small bowl until smooth; add to flour mixture, stirring until just combined.  Fold in apples; spread batter evenly over crust. 

Bake at 375* for one hour and 20 minutes or until cake tests done; cool in pan on a wire rack.  Makes 12 servings. 

 

Pineapple Zucchini Bread

3 cups all-purpose flour

2 tsps baking soda

1 tsp salt

1/4 tsp baking powder

1 1/2 tsps ground cinnamon

2 cups white sugar

1 cup vegetable oil

3 eggs

3/4 tsp vanilla extract

2 cups shredded zucchini

1 (8 ounce) can crushed pineapple, well drained

1 cup raisins

1 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat an oven to 325*  Line the bottom of two 9×5-inch loaf pans with parchment paper.

Mix flour, baking soda, salt, baking powder, and cinnamon in a bowl. Beat sugar, vegetable oil, eggs, and vanilla extract together in a large mixing bowl, and stir in zucchini and pineapple. Gradually pour in the flour mixture, mixing until just incorporated. Fold in raisins and walnuts, mixing to evenly combine. Divide batter evenly between the two prepared loaf pans.

Bake in the preheated oven until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 1 hour. Working with one loaf at a time, hold the pan on its side and gently tap the sides of the pan against the counter to loosen it. Cover the pan with a cooling rack, and invert it to tip the cake out of the pan and onto the rack. Peel off the parchment paper, and allow bread to cool completely.

 

Maple Autumn Squash Soup

1 lb butternut squash, peeled, cubed and boiled

½ cup butter, divided

¼ cup maple syrup

3 Tb brown sugar, packed

1 tsp cinnamon

½ tsp ground ginger

3 Tb all-purpose flour

2 cups chicken broth

2 cups unsweetened applesauce

1 cup Granny Smith apples, cored, peeled and chopped

2 cups light cream

Salt and pepper to taste

 Combine squash with 4 Tb butter, syrup, brown sugar and spices; mash well and set aside.  Melt remaining butter in a large pot over medium heat; add flour and cook for 3 mins, stirring constantly.  Blend in broth and cook until soup thickens.  Stir in squash mixture, applesauce and apples.  Cook over medium heat until warmed through, stirring often.  Add cream and heat just until soup begins to bubble around the edges.  Cool and refrigerate overnight.  Reheat over medium heat until warmed through.  Makes 6-8 servings.

 

Autumn Tossed Salad

1/2 cup lemon juice

1/2 cup sugar

2 teaspoons finely chopped onion

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1/2 teaspoon salt

2/3 cup vegetable oil

1 tablespoon poppy seeds

1 bunch romaine, torn

1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Swiss cheese

1 cup unsalted cashews

1 medium apple, chopped

1 medium pear, chopped

1/4 cup dried cranberries

 

 

In a blender, combine the lemon juice, sugar, onion, mustard and salt. While processing, gradually add oil in a steady stream. Stir in poppy seeds. Transfer to a small pitcher or bowl. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour or until chilled.

In a large salad bowl, combine the romaine, cheese, cashews, apple, pear and cranberries. Drizzle with dressing and toss to coat. Makes 10 servings.

 

Cinnamon Apple Pork Tenderloin

 

1 to 1 1/2 pounds pork tenderloin

2 Tbs cornstarch

1 tsp ground cinnamon

2 Tbs brown sugar, packed

2 cooking apples, peeled, cored and sliced

2 Tbs dried cranberries or raisins

Preheat the oven to 400°. Place the pork tenderloin in a roasting pan or casserole dish. Combine the remaining ingredients in a bowl and stir. Spoon the apple mixture around the pork tenderloin. Cover and bake 30 minutes. Remove the lid and spoon the apple mixture over the tenderloin. Return to the oven and bake 15 to 20 minutes longer, or until pork tenderloin is browned and cooked through. A meat thermometer in the center should register at least 150° to 160°.
Serves 4

 

Apple-Acorn Squash

2 acorn squash, halved and seeded

½ cup apple juice

¼ cup butter, melted

¼ tsp. nutmeg

2 Tb brown sugar, packed

1 tsp orange zest

2 tart apples, cored and sliced

 Place squash cut side-up in a 13” x 9” baking pan; pour apple juice on top and set aside.  Combine butter, nutmeg, brown sugar and zest in a bowl.  Divide apple slices evenly among squash halves; pour butter mixture over apples.  Cover and bake at 375* for 45 to 50 mins.  Serves 4.

 

Apple Cake with Butter Sauce

¼ cup butter, softened

1 cup sugar

1 egg

1 tsp vanilla

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp cinnamon

¼ tsp salt

¼ tsp nutmeg

2 tart apples, cored, peeled and grated

Cream butter and sugar together.  Beat in egg and vanilla and set aside.  Combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon, salt and nutmeg; gradually add to creamed mixture.  Fold in apples.  Pour into a greased 8” x 8” baking pan.  Bake at 350* for 40 – 45 mins.  Serve warm with Butter Sauce.  Makes 12 servings.

 Butter Sauce

½ cup butter

½ cup sugar

½ cup brown sugar, packed

½ cup half and half

Melt butter in a saucepan; stir in sugar, brown sugar and half and half.  Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly.  Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 15 mins, stirring occasionally.

 

Sweet Potato Pecan Pie

1-1/4 cups sugar

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

2 eggs

1 can (12 ounces) evaporated milk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1-1/2 cups mashed cooked sweet potatoes

1 unbaked pie crust (9 inches)

 

TOPPING

 

1/3 cup butter

1/3 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

1/2 cup flaked coconut

1/2 cup chopped pecans

Whipped topping or ice cream

 

In a bowl, blend sugar and spices. Beat eggs; add milk and vanilla. Combine the sugar mixture. Stir in potatoes; beat until smooth. Pour into pie shell. Bake at 425° for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350° and bake for an additional 30 minutes. Combine topping ingredients. Remove pie from the oven; sprinkle with topping. Bake 10-15 minutes or until topping is golden brown. Cool on wire rack. Store in the refrigerator. Serve with whipped topping or ice cream.

6-8 servings.

 

As you can see, these recipes use a lot of apples, squash, nuts, sweet potatoes…foods that are abundant this time of year.  Now I doubt you will want to make all of these for one meal LOL  but there are plenty to choose from in different combinations.  Have fun with them, add just one thing to what YOU like to fix.  Remember to think about the fact that this is a Harvest festival and give thanks and blessings for the food on your table and remember the hard work that goes into getting in there..including YOUR hard work preparing it 🙂

Have family or friends over for a nice meal, start a bonfire and roast marshmallows outside or have the warm cider after you eat by the fire.  Put out bales of hay with old blankets thrown over them for everyone to sit on.  A soup party is sooo much fun to have this time of year.  When light jackets or sweaters will do the trick on a cool Autumn night.  Just make  2-3 different types of soups and keep them warm in crock pots.  Add lots of toppers for the soups, some homemade bread, sweet cider and something made with apples for dessert and you have the makings of a great Mabon!  Light candles in jars or lanterns to add ambiance.  Use Fall colored bandannas as napkins.  Give everyone a small mum to take home as a little gift or bake a loaf of bread for each family or give them a jar of apple butter or apple sauce you made yourself.  The ideas for this Sabbat are endless! 

To me Autumn is the most beautiful time of year but also the season that always seems to be the shortest..so be sure to make the most of it before that first Winter Snow 🙂 

Until my next post, hope you have a wonderful Labor Day weekend and that you all have a relaxing long weekend and if its not relaxing..well then I hope it’s fun!

Blessed Be, Autumn

*Sources…Recipes are from my own cookbooks and my own recipe box.  Pics are from the internet.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

18 Comments

Filed under Autumn, Loose incense recipe, Mabon, Oil Blend Recipe, Recipe from my Kitchen

Ostara Recipes…………

Merry Meet friends.  Hope you are having a good week so far.  After warm Spring-like weather, the rains came in! It rained ALL day on Monday…dark and gloomy and wet!  Then it turned cold, the rain  turned to sleet and ice and then  to snow.  Luckily the snow wasnt’ heavy and went away quickly. However,  winter is most definitely back but it is still February after all.  Here in Ohio winter lingers long indeed.  LOL.  So I’m sitting by my fire again tonight, candles lit, incense burning, and I’m crocheting a shawl for a friend and relaxing after a busy day.

Ostara is coming before we know it so my thoughts are turning towards the celebration.  I thought I’d post some recipes here….both for magick and for your dinner table.  First, I have a recipe for an Ostara oil blend and an Ostara loose incense blend.

Ostara Oil

 1 drop Almond

   1 drop Patchouli

   1 drop Elder

     1 drop Lavender

     1 drop Violet

Ostara Loose Incense Recipe

2 parts frankincense

2 parts sandalwood

1 part lemongrass

1 part patchouli

1 part lavender

Both of these magickal scents smell so great..you’ll love them!

Now for your dinner table…if you read my previous post about Ostara correspondences, you’ll see that these recipes are perfect for the day or the week of this beautiful Sabbat.  Eggs of course are a must!  Here is a couple of my own recipes I think you’ll like.  “Deviled Eggs” are always on our holiday table and mine get rave reviews and a “must bring” so here is the recipe..kind of.  I am one of those people who just throw things together until it tastes right..but I’ll get as close as I can.

Autumn’s Ostara Eggs

12 large eggs

1/2 cup Miracle Whip

1 1/2 tablespoons yellow mustard

1/2 tsp sugar

1/4 tsp salt

pepper to taste

Paprika to garnish if you like

*Now this is really just a guess….you may need to add more Miracle Whip or more sugar or salt..you want it kind of creamy and kind of sweet 🙂

 Place eggs in a saucepan with COLD water to cover plus 1 inch. On medium-high heat, bring the eggs to a low boil. Turn off heat and cover.  Let stand for 20 minutes.  Then drain off hot water and immerse in ice cold water to cool.  This cold water method makes perfect boiled eggs.  Also, a little hint.  You want your eggs to be a few days old.  The newer the egg, the harder it is to remove the peel.  

 Halve the eggs lengthwise. Remove the yolks, place them in a small bowl, and mash them with a fork. Add all ingredients except paprika.  Mix well. Now to make really pretty eggs, I use a frosting bag with a tip to put the yolk mixture into the whites.  Or you can cut a little hole in the corner of a plastic bag and pipe in the mixture that way.  Very pretty and neat.  Sprinkle with paprika if desired.  Makes 24 appetizers.

Another egg recipe I make often is my overnight breakfast casserole.  It is easy and yummy and so nice to not have to work so hard in the morning when you get up.  Just pop it in the oven and enjoy your coffee 🙂

Autumn’s Overnight Breakfast Strata

1 lb ground sausage, browned & drained

6 slices of day old bread, cubed

3 cups shredded cheddar cheese

2 cups milk

6 eggs

½ tsp salt

Pepper to taste.

Place ½ of the bread cubes in a greased 13” x 9” baking dish.  Top with ½ cheese.  Then all the sausage, then the rest of the bread and top with remaining cheese.

Blend the rest of the ingredients well.  Pour over casserole.

Cover and refrigerate overnight.

In the morning, Bake uncovered at 350* for 1 hour or until top is brown and bubbly.

*I serve this with a fresh fruit salad and warm muffins and the Applewood Julep…YUMMY!!

Ok..as I said here…this goes great with an Applewood Julep.  The Applewood Restaurant in Sevierville, TN is a favorite restaurant of ours for down home cookin.  When  you go there, you get a glass of this delcious refreshing juice with apple fritters and apple butter!  Divine!!  You will need to make a double batch of this juice..guarenteed!

Applewood Julep

1 quart unsweetened apple juice

1 cup unsweetened pineapple juice

1 cup orange juice

¼ cup fresh lemon juice

Fresh mint sprigs

Combine ingredients..Serve chilled.  Garnish with mint.  Great over ice as well.

Sweet breads was on the list of foods that correspond to Ostara.  There is nothing more traditional for this time of year then Honey Cakes and Hot Cross Buns.  The Hot Cross Buns are started out in your bread machine..easy peasy and the Honey Cakes are easy and sweet as well!

Hot Cross Buns for Bread Machine

Ingredients

2 eggs plus enough water to equal 1 1/3 cups

½ cup butter

4 cups bread flour

¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon

¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 ½ teaspoons salt

2 tablespoons sugar

1 ½ teaspoons bread machine or quick active dry yeast

½ cup raisins

½ cup golden raisins

1 egg

2 tablespoons cold water

White Icing (below)

Measure carefully, placing all ingredients except raisins, the 1 egg, the cold water and the white icing in bread machine in the order recommended by the manufacturer.  Add raisins at the raisin/nut signal.

Select Dough/Manual cycle.  Do not use delay cycles.

Remove dough from pan, using lightly floured hands. Cover and let rest 10 minutes on lightly floured surface.

Grease cookie sheet or 2 round pans, 9 x 1 ½ inches.  Divide dough in half. Divide each half into 8 equal pieces.  Shape each piece into a smooth ball.  Place 2 inches apart on cookie sheet or 1 inch apart in pans.  Snip a cross shape in top of each ball, using scissors.  Cover and let rise in warm place about 40 minutes or until double.

Heat oven to 375*.  Beat egg and cold water slightly; brush on buns.  Bake 18 to 20 minutes or until golden brown.  Remove from cookie sheet to rack.  Cool slightly.  Make a cross on bun with White Icing.

White Icing

1 cup powdered sugar

1 tablespoon milk or water

½ teaspoon vanilla

Mix all ingredients until smooth and spreadable

Honey Cake

1 cup honey

1 cup applesauce

3 eggs

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon clove

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

2 cups flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 cup strong brewed decaffeinated coffee (can be made from instant)

  In a large bowl, mix together the first 3 ingredients.  In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, spices and baking soda.  Add the flour mixture to the wet stuff, alternating with the coffee; beat well.

Pour into a greased 9″x13″ pan (or, alternatively, three 8″ square pans).

 Bake at 325*F for 60-90 minutes* for the large pan, 60 minutes for the three smaller pans

*Just watch for it to be spongy and golden brown.

 Ok…now Ostara is all about Spring and longer days and our thoughts turn to our gardens and fresh fruit and vegetables.  This salad is exactly what you need to serve.  It has all the good stuff!  Use the berries that are in season for the best flavor.

Bountiful Garden Salad with Raspberry Vinagarette

6 cups spinach, torn                                                       

1 lb romaine lettuce, torn                                            

1 stalk celery, chopped                                                 

1 tomato, chopped                                                        

½ cucumber chopped                                                   

1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped

1 clove garlic, finely chopped

½ orange, peeled and sectioned

¾ cup blackberries, raspberries and/or blueberries

¼ cup strawberries, hulled and sliced

¼ cup chopped walnuts or pecans, toasted

Garnish: croutons

Place all of the ingredients except croutons into a large salad bowl and toss to mix.  Drizzle with Raspberry Dressing; garnish with croutons. Serves 6-8

Raspberry Dressing

¾ cup to 1 cup raspberries, crushed

1 cup oil

¼ cup raspberry vinegar

1 TB sugar

2 TB lemon juice

Salt & pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients except salt and pepper; whish well.  Add salt and pepper to taste

I’m going to stop there for now.  I have a friend who is passing on a lamb recipe and I have a delcious parmesan whitefish recipe I want to share, and a great strawberry cake recipe!  You will then have all you need to have give your family and friends a lovely Spring meal on Ostara.  Have your family over for a delicious brunch while you color eggs and have an egg hunt with the kids.  It’ll hardly be any work at all as you can make the juice and the breakfast casserole the day before.  To really celebrate the day, after breakfast, go for a walk on a nature trail.  Collect stones and look for flowers starting to bloom and see what birds you can identify and see if the trees are budding yet?  After the family is gone, enjoy a glass of wine and pull out your seed and garden catalogs and magazines.  Dream of being outdoors feeling the warmth of the Sun, the blue skies, the taste of fresh veggies and herbs from your garden.  Ostara is the promise of Spring…so Enjoy!

Love and Blessings, Autumn

*Sources- Applewood restaurant, Gooseberry Patch cookbooks, and my own recipe box.  None of the pictures are mine..one thing I’ve learned from having a blog…take pictures of my food, beverages etc!!  For future blogs 🙂

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Filed under Family, Garden, Holiday, Loose incense recipe, Oil Blend Recipe, Ostara, Recipe from my Kitchen, Spring

Home Protection…..

Greetings my friends!  I hope this Wolf Full Moon time has been magickal for you and that She continues to shine her energy on you.  I have not been able to see Her unfortunately…we have had heavy cloud cover, fog and about 5-6 inches of snow so far today.  The snow is beautiful but has made for some slippery roads, busy grocery stores, sore backs from shoveling and smoke coming out of many chimneys.  I stepped outside earlier for a moment and the smell was incredible from the wood smoke and the sharp cold.  A beautiful snowy night despite the fact the Full Moon Goddess is hidden from my sight.  Though I can’t see Her I can feel Her incredible energy and after having a tough couple of days, her magick is most appreciated by me!

On my facebook page today I asked the question..Do you have protection established around your home to protect you and your loved ones.  As per usual, my wonderful, amazing, smart and funny friends came through with many responses.  In general they DO have protection set up.  Everything from rosemary in their garden…to a broom over their doorway….to a witches bottle buried at their front door.  I learned about cutting an apple so the natural pentacle shows and burying them in your garden beds.  I learned about something called bindrunes which I’ve never heard of and am waitingly anxiously to hear about them.  I had friends who of course smudge , place crystals and/or salt in the corners of their house or property, have a pentacle on their front door, and use blessing oil on their doorways and windowsills.  

Putting protection spells on our homes is easy and smart. There are spells to protect from intruders and storms.  We can also protect ourselves from negative vibes sent our way, those who may put a dark spell on us, psychic vampires and the like.  There are many simple spells and rituals that can be done so I thought I’d post a few of my favorites for you. 

This first one is so easy and basic.  Choose your item carefully!

Home Protection Talisman Spell

  Make or buy an item to display in your home that you can charge with protective energy. This could be a wreath, ornamental plaque, a painting or statue.. anything you can display. Before you hang it or put it in view, place the item in a circle of salt. Sprinkle the salt clockwise as you say:

 Salt of earth, Guard this home,

While I’m here, or when I roam

Keep it safe, and all within

For good of all, this bond begins

By my will, with harm to none

By Earth power, this spell is done!

 *Not sure where I got this but it’s very possible it’s from Ellen Dugan…the charm sounds much like her. 🙂

Think about what you would want to use.  A statue, a piece of china or pottery, a painting, a candle holder.  I can picture using a statue of a faery, a dragon, a large crystal point.  You could use something from nature like a river rock, a large bird’s feather, a sea shell.  Use something that you will love to display.

Another talisman spell I like to use is making up a charm bag that you will literally hang over a doorway.  I think this one is really fun because of all the things you can gather for it.  Use what has meaning for you…what item means protection to YOU!

 Home Protection Talisman For When You’re Away From Home.

To make this talisman, choose at least 3 of the following dried herbs and place them in a charm bag that is white or gold.

Nettles                         Oak Bark                   Bay

    Anise                           Basil                           Linden

   Pennyroyal                 Valerian                      Wormwood

        Broom                         Angelica                      Yarrow

       Calamus                       Hazel                          Hawthorn

      Mistletoe                      Myrrh                         Thistle

      Meadowsweet             Garlic                          Flax

      Clove                           Cumin                          Frankincense

       Cinquefoil                    Black Pepper

Then add any amount of any of these stones….

Gold Pyrite                Malachite                     Cat’s Eye

   Tiger’s Eye                 Topaz                          Amber

    Mica                            Quartz Crystal            Red Zircon

      Flint                            Beryl                          Bloodstone

    Tie up the bag and with a permanent marker, make 3 large X figures and place the talisman over a main entry point of your home.  Then spell it with the following words of power! 

This dwelling is never empty,

Though I be not at home;

I leave behind a talisman

to protect it while I roam.

No intruder great or small

May gain entry past this line;

Protected, sealed, and warded,

     By my will, safety be mine

   I finish this charm with harm to none;

    By herb and stone, this spell is done!

 

 

Some other things that you can use for protection is a protection oil…you can use it to anoint your doorways and windowsills.  I like to draw a pentagram with it!

 

Protection Oil

 4 drops Patchouli

 3 drops Lavender

 1 drop Mugwort

  1 drop Hyssop

*You will add this to 1/8 cup of a base oil like olive, almond, jojoba..whatever you like.

Another simple way to protect your home is to put salt around the outside of your house, lay it in your windowsills, place it inside your house in the outside corners.  Now if you are a very picky house keeper, you might want to keep it outside.  Also a word of warning here…be sure that anything you have laying around is safe for your pets…you don’t want them to get sick from eating salt or some herb they shouldn’t.  That would not be good.

For me the ultimate protection is the Witches Bottle…. this is also one of the most fun things to do!  Remember in the movie Practical Magic when Sally (Sandra Bullock) goes around and collects her magickal items needed for her perfect love?  Gathering the items for your witches bottle?  Yes, it feels like that! 🙂  I feel very “witchy” doing it LOL..but it IS serious business too.  You really want to be sure, each step of the way, to put your full intention into the items and the ritual.  I put my bottle together on a Full Moon night for the added strength and I renew it at least once a year…

 

 Witch’s Protection Bottle

You will be burying this bottle in the ground at your front door.

Gather items needed:                                                   

-A Sturdy, clean, wide-mouthed bottle or jar with a tight lid.
-Soil or sand from the area surrounding your home.
-Something sparkly or shining like small tumbled crystals, beads, sea glass

-A rusty bent nail.
-A piece of broken glass
-Dried herbs

*Mint, Parsley, Sage, Rosemary, Thyme
-A new penny or other coin
-Some loose hair from any pets in your home
-A piece of hair from every person in the home

-A magickal spell candle
   

Find the appropriate spot in your yard to bury the bottle. Work on the night of a Full Moon at the height of the Full Moon,  or on the Full Moon right before Summer Solstice. Have all your items with you and a shovel. Use salt to purify the space.

 Cast a circle around your working area.  Light your working candle while you do your work. Dig the hole in the earth, try to keep the top sod in good shape to replace over the hole. Sprinkle with salt. Ground and Center.   When ready, say these words:

With the Goddess and God working for and through me
according to free will and for the good of all.
I now fill this bottle.

As you say the next part, actually add the items that you are naming as you go.  Take your time putting your intention into each item you place.

 

 
 

Earth anchors this magick in the ground.
This rusty nail, bent, now repels anything and anyone negative or life-denying.
The sparkling, shiny small pieces of crystals hold the light for me and my deities.
A broken piece of glass to deflect harm to anyone it is intended for.
These herbs infuse the bottle with their living properties…

 

 Mint for money and protection
Parsley for protection
Sage for wisdom and protection
Rosemary for love, healing, and health
Thyme for health, love, and courage.
This new penny manifests abundance in my home.
 Hair from my beloved pets to protect them.
Hair from my loved ones who dwell here, to protect and draw away negativity.

 

This home is divinely protected and effectively safe.
Nothing and no one can enter without my permission
Only those people and beings through whom the Goddess and God work
Can stay here, can visit, can touch this place.
 

Only Positive Magick lives in this place
In safety, protection, abundance, love, and joy
According to free will and for the good of all!

Start to bury the bottle, and replace the sod you dug up before hand and then say:

 

I now bury this bottle
It is invisible to all but me
And its magick continues
And so mote it be!

     By the time you have finished this spell, the bottle should be buried. Cover with leaves or something appropriate to make it truly invisible. Under the ground, it will continue to work until you choose to remove it. If you leave that area, it is best to dig up the bottle. Then perform this again at your next residence.

If you’re like me, your home is your sanctuary, your blessed space, where the people and fur babies you love the most of all, dwell.  You are the most comfortable, the most loved, the most ..YOU…when you are there.  Of course you want to do all you can to protect it and those who live there with you.  I wish for all of you a safe 2011 and all the Blessings that Goddess can bestow!

Blessed Be, Autumn

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Filed under Full Moons, Goddess, Herbs, Oil Blend Recipe, Protection, Ritual, Spells

Yule Recipes for Altar and Kitchen……..

Merry Meet my lovely friends. It is a chilly night..I’m sitting in jammies by the fire, sipping on egg nog and focusing on the upcoming Winter Solstice.   Yule is less then 2 weeks away and Christmas just a few days later.   I am about done shopping and my thoughts are turning to my kitchen and my altar.  I love cooking yummy, great smelling foods for my family to enjoy and I love “cooking” up sweet smelling oils and incenses for my use at my altar…. to anoint candles or myself,  for spells and ritual.  So thought I’d post some recipes for fun!  Some of these I have made and some I am looking forward to trying for the first time!

First some recipes for magickal workings.

Winter’s Night Yule Incense

2 parts Juniper berries

2 parts mugwort

1 part cedar

1 part pine resin

1 part laurel leaves

1 part chopped sweetgrass

½ part rosemary

This is one I have not tried yet..but look forward to making in a few days!  Can’t you just smell the pine, rosemary and cedar..must smell like a Yule tree farm!

Christmas Incense

3 parts Frankincense

2 parts Myrrh

2 part Cassia

2 part Mace

1/2 part clove buds

*from Pagan Christmas

If you don’t know how to make or burn loose incense…there is a post here on my blog about how to do it.   I love the loose incense..the smell is richer and lasts longer…and I feel very “witchy” when making it and burning it! 🙂

Winter Solstice Oil Blend

 4 drops Pine

  2 drops Orange

  2 drops Cedar

 2 drops Juniper

 2-3 lumps finely ground Frankincense

This I have made and it is wonderful!  I like to mix it with olive oil to give it a green look!  The smell of orange and pine is just luscious…for extra special scent..add a bit of ground clove too…smells like an orange pomander sitting on a bed of evergreens! 🙂

Ok..now lets head to the kitchen for some favorite Yuletide season recipes!  This is the time of year to NOT be on a diet! LOL!  Women (and men) have gathered in their kitchens for hundreds of years, cooking up feasts for their loved ones.  From ham to pie, from wassail to sides…the kitchen is full of delicious smells, the warmth from the oven and hearth, and the laughter of the family and friends who have gathered there.  This is the REAL reason for this season…..the love shared at this time of year.  In my family, my daughters learned to bake at an early age and my granddaughter Lily is learning already!   Giving a plate of homemade yummy goodness makes the receiver and the giver feel great!  So here is a few favorites to enjoy with your family!

GINGERBREAD CAKE 
2 1/2 c. all purpose flour
1 tsp. ginger
1/4 tsp. cloves
1/4 tsp. salt
1 c. sugar
1 c. boiling water
1 3/4 tsp. soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
2 eggs, beaten
1 c. molasses
1/2 c. shorteningMix all dry ingredients, cream sugar, shortening, add molasses, blend all together.Pour into greased 13 x 9 inch pan, bake at 350°F for 30 minutes or until center springs back. Cool in pan, cut into squares.  I love making gingerbread cake and serving it warm with Lemon Sauce or Caramel Sauce..you can also make this into loaves to give away as gifts!LEMON SAUCE1/2 c. sugar
2 tbsp. cornstarch
1/4 tsp. salt
2 c. water
1/4 c. butter
1 tbsp. grated lemon rind
3 tbsp. lemon juice

Mix sugar, cornstarch and salt in saucepan. Gradually stir in water. Cook, stirring constantly, until it thickens and boils. Boil and stir 1 minute. Remove from heat. Stir in rest of ingredients. Serve over gingerbread.

Now that you have your delicious cake you might want something hot and warm to go with it to drink.  Hot spicy drinks are the perfect thing for this time of year…to sip, to make you feel warm and cozy inside!  Here’s a couple that might just fill that order!

 

 HOT BUTTERED RUM
 1 c. softened butter
1 1/3 c. light brown sugar
6 tbsp. honey
2 tsp. nutmeg
2 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. vanillaMix all together. Refrigerate. When ready to serve, place 2 heaping tablespoons in each mug of hot apple cider and add rum to taste.  For even more great taste..add a spiced rum like Captain Morgans…Yum-O!! 🙂

HOLIDAY HOT WASSAIL
 4 c. apple juice
3 c. pineapple juice
2 c. cranberry juice cocktail
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1 cinnamon stick
3 whole cloves
Lemon slicesCombine all ingredients in a large kettle and simmer.  Serve hot.  You might need to double this if it’s for a holiday party…and of course you can add brandy or spiced rum to this delicious holiday punch as well!One more recipe…and I confess I haven’t made this one though I’ve made something like it.  I think this would make a wonderful gift to give to neighbors, co-workers, your paper boy or mailman or UPS guy..(I know mine by first name! LOL).  I also think it would be delicious to have on Yule morning or Christmas morning while opening gifts!

CHERRY EGGNOG BREAD2 1/2 cups flour
3/4 c. sugar
1 tsp. salt
1 tbsp. baking powder
1 egg, beaten
1 1/4 c. eggnog
1/3 c. oil
1/2 c. nuts, chopped
1/2 c. cherries, cut upMix dry ingredients. Add eggnog, egg and oil. Mix well. Pour into greased bread pans. One large or two small.  Bake at 350 degrees for 50 to 60 minutes.  I think this is a recipe that will be doubled or tripled right off the bat!  Wrap it in red or green plastic wrap, tie a silver or gold bow around it and it will make a beautiful gift.I hope you all will try and enjoy these recipes.  Money is tight for everyone this year and there may be some feelings of discontent or sadness in so many who have lost their jobs or can’t celebrate the season like they want to.  Serving delicious food and making cakes, breads, cookies etc  will put the cheer back in your heart and the skip in your step.  Make each meal a celebration of love and joy and savor the taste and the time with family and friends! 

May Peace and Plenty be the first to lift the latch of your door

and Happiness be guided to your home by the candle of Yule

-An Old Irish Blessing

 

Wishing you warm wishes for a joyful Yule season!  Autumn

 

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Filed under Family, Loose incense recipe, Oil Blend Recipe, Recipe from my Kitchen, Spice, Yule/Winter Solstice/Chrismas