Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Samhain Approaches

Samhain, celebrated on October 31, is a festival of the coming of darkness in balance with the Wheel of the Year and the celebration of Beltane, the coming of light. In honor of our beloved ancestors we light bonfires and invite our ancestors, friends, pets and others who have passed on to join us in our ritual, feasts and activities.
Light a single candle and place it in your window to help guide the spirits to your ritual. Place an empty chair at your feast for an unseen guest.
Decorate your altar with photos your loved ones who have passed. Of course, the traditional and common colors are black and orange. Use a black altar cloth and bright orange pumpkins.
Although not a common Samhain food, I am making Ajoblanco with grapes which is a very traditional Spanish cold soup made by pureeing blanched almonds with bread and adding cold water.
  • Ajoblanco with Grapes
9 oz raw almonds, peeled
2 garlic cloves, peeled
4 oz bread crumbs
5 fl oz extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp sherry vinegar
1 quart ice-cold water
coarse salt
9 oz muscatel grapes, peeled and seeded

Soak the bread crumbs in water. Pound the peeled garlic cloves and salt together in a mortar. Squeeze off any excess water from the bread crumbs, then add them to the garlic/salt mixture. If you are making it by hand, continue using a mortar or a round bowl. Otherwise, only use a blender from this point onward. Add the almonds and blend to a smooth paste. Slowly add the oil so that it emulsifies. Now add the vinegar and continue blending until the paste is spongy. Finally, stir in the ice-cold water until you achieve the desired consistency.
Chill until serving time. Before serving, check the seasoning and add more salt or vinegar if needed. Pour into the serving dish and garnish with the muscatel grapes.
Recipe from Spain GourmeTour Magazine
  • I am sticking to a tapas type menu and along with the soup we are having blue cheese stuffed olives, roasted red peppers mixed with feta, cured ham, assorted cheeses warm bread and mead. Yum.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Mabon - Autumn Equinox

September 21 is Mabon, the second harvest festival. Food made with corn and grains are eaten and cider is used in celebration. As we prepare for the cold winter months ahead, all herbs and flowers should be brought inside and dried for use throughout the winter. Gone is the Maiden of Spring and Mother of Summer, we now celebrate the Goddess as the Crone. Decorate your altar with the colors of fall, oranges, browns, reds, and gold. Gemstones are carnelian, sapphire, and yellow agate. Use leaves and acorns to adorn your altar as well.

This recipe comes from the Almond Board of California and is a perfect snack for Mabon.

Jalapeno Almonds

1/4 cup salted butter

1/3 cup hot pepper sauce

1 Tbls. Worcestershire sauce

1 1/2 tsp. garlic powder

1 1/2 tsp. salt

1 tsp. dry mustard

4 cups whole natural almonds

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt butter over low heat and stir in pepper sauce, Worcestershire sauces, garlic powder, salt and dry mustard. Toss almonds in mixture and place on large roasting pan. Bake 40 to 50 minutes stirring occasionally until all the liquid is absorbed. Cool. Store in an airtight container.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Lughnasadh August 1

This is the first of the Pagan harvest festivals. It heralds the end of summer and is often celebrated with baking breads, having outdoor parties and craft fairs. At this time we honor the Goddess as the Earth Mother. Decorate your altar with sunflowers, and corn husks. Use light browns and greens mixed with golds and yellows to symbolize the harvest. Again, think of what is harvested this time of year: oats, grains, nuts, squash, apples, blackberries, lamb, etc. Another wonderful treat is a sweet blackberry wine. Try checking out some local vineyards and wineries in your area, they often have this type of harvest wine that is produced locally! If you are lucky enough to live in Kentucky check out in Versailles, they have a wonderful blackberry wine as well as a cherry wine and a sparking apple cider that is so good for this time of year!
  • My garden is currently overrun with acorn squash plants. My husband and I love them and are always looking for new ways to make them. Here is a recipe that is wonderful for your acorn squash. By the way, if you have grown lots of acorn squash it will keep long in to the winter if you store it in your basement or anywhere cool and away from light.

Acorn Squash with Pecans and Goat Cheese

2 acorn squash, halved crosswise and seeded

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons melted butter

2/3 cup chopped pecans

2 tablespoons maple syrup plus more to drizzle (use the real stuff here)

1/2 teaspoon fresh or 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme leaves

4 oz. log goat cheese

Heat oven to 375F. Sprinkle inside of squash halves with salt and brush with melted butter. Turn upside down on baking sheet and bake 30 minutes.Stir together pecans, maple syrup and thyme. Turn squash upright on baking sheet. Reserving about 3 tablespoons pecan mixture, fill hollow of each squash with remaining pecan mixture. Slice goat cheese crosswise into four equal rounds. Place a round of cheese in hollow of each squash and sprinkle with reserved pecan mixture.Bake 10 minutes more. Drizzle with more syrup as desired and serve.

Thursday, July 31, 2008


I have been getting a lot of e-mails via Witchvox concerning our Kentucky Kitchen Witch Circle! We are currently looking for new members and I would love to hear from anyone interested in joining our little group. Please e-mail me ( and/or come to see us at the Pagan Pride Festival held on September 20, 2008 from noon to six at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Lexington on Clays Mill Road.



Thursday, July 10, 2008

Zucchini Fritters

My husband and I have mistakenly planted way too many zucchini plants this year in our garden. We love them and try to come up with as many ways of preparing them. Unfortunately we still have way to many for two people to consume. I'm giving them away like candy at work right now. I experimented last night and came up with this zucchini fritter recipe.
  • Zucchini Fritters
1 zucchini squash grated
2 large eggs
1 cup self rising corn meal
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
pinch of nutmeg
Canola or peanut oil
Grate your zucchini and allow to drain in a colander to remove excess water. Beat eggs, corn meal, salt, pepper and nutmeg, then add drained zucchini. Heat oil in large skillet over medium high heat. Drop a small amount of mixture in oil to test temperature. If it immediately sizzles and begins to brown it is ready. Drop tablespoon sized dollops of batter into oil, flatten slightly. Fry on one side two minutes, flip fry an additional two minutes or until browned and cooked through. Serve with warm marinara sauce. Enjoy.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Lexington Pagan Pride Day 2008

The Kentucky Kitchen Witches will have a table set up at the Pagan Pride Festival this year on September 20, 2008! We are currently working on a COOKBOOK which we will have for sale. It follows the wheel of the year and is full of yummy recipes and magical correspondences. We are now happily taste testing several recipes to assure they are delicious! We will also have some food samples, treats, herbs and other items for sale. Please come by and say hello.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Watermelon Fruit Basket

With the heat index reaching over 100 in the summer, no one really wants to slave over a hot stove. Here is a great recipe for those hot summer days.... no oven required.

To begin, take a sharp knife and slice a small thin piece off the bottom of your melon to keep the bottom flat so it will not roll around on the counter.

Next, take the tip of a marker/pencil and draw a horizontal line in the middle of the watermelon. Then mark a strip of about 2 inches wide in the middle in the top half of the melon - this will form the handle of your basket. The marks form 2 large "wedges" on either side of the handle. Carefully cut the 2 wedges from either side of the handle. Remove the fruit from under the handle with a small knife.

Take a melon baller or spoon and hollow out the inside of the watermelon. After removing all the edible parts, take a large spoon and gently scrape out the sides of your "basket". Be care not to scrape too thinly on the handle. To avoid liquid from collecting in the bottom of the "basket" and making the fruit soggy, make small "drainage" holes in the bottom of the watermelon after hollowing it out and before filling with the fruit. Display the basket in a container filled with ice cubes to keep the fruit cold, and to catch any juice from the drainage holes.

Mix the watermelon with other ripe fresh fruits. You can decorate the bowls using your knife to cut designs as shown in the picture above. Be creative and enjoy!

Summer Solstice or Litha

The Summer Solstice is a festival in tribute of the Sun King. Occurring on or about June 21 it marks the longest day of the year when the sun is at its northernmost point moving into Cancer. This is a wonderful time to gather herbs or other vegetables. It is also the time to collect your magical water for usage around the house since Cancer is a water sign. Collect rain water in a jar and store on a shelf. Always remember to leave offerings after collecting your magical items!

The full moon, occurring on June 18, is known as the honey moon. The tradition is to gather honey from beehives at this time to make mead and other dishes. That being said, have mead at your altar with honey cakes for your offering. Decorate your altar with greens, golds and orange. Chamomile and lavender are excellent herbs.

You may want to try a few activities at this time as well, such as making a Witch's Ladder by braiding three strands of red, black and white yarn into a three foot length. Weave nine feathers of various colors into the braid and hang up in your home. Use feathers of green for money, white for balance, black for wisdom, etc.

Here is a fun and rather disturbing Summer Solstice recipe:

Squashed Frogs

1 stick of butter
10 oz. bag marshmallows
5 cups corn flakes
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 teaspoons green food coloring
1 cup M&M's plain chocolate candies

Melt margarine in large saucepan. Add marshmallows and cook over low heat, stirring constantly until melted and mixture is syrupy. Remove from heat. Add vanilla and food color. Mix. Add corn flakes and M&Ms and mix until well coated and bright green. Drop from a tablespoon on a piece of waxed paper and cool the globs.

Monday, April 21, 2008



Beltane or May Day occurs on May 1 and is the last of the three spring fertility festivals. It is a time when people, plants and animals prepare for the warm months ahead. Beltane is often celebrated with a May Pole in which ribbons of purple, yellow, pink, green and white are tied and wrapped around a pole. Traditionally, the ribbons were white and red to symbolize the God and Goddess and their union, however if you prefer the brighter more spring time colors can be used. Other traditions include jumping the Beltane fire and baking Beltane cakes as offerings to the God and Goddess. It is a festival of love, lust and fertility. Animals often associated with Beltane are goats, rabbits and honey bees. Decorate your home and altar with fresh flowers and greenery. Serve Beltane cakes, vanilla ice cream or marigold custard. Meade is a good drink for this festival.

Marigold Custard

Beltane Marigold Custard
Recipe by Scott Cunningham

2 cups milk
1 cup unsprayed marigold petals
1/4 tsp. salt
3 Tbsp. sugar
1 to 2-inch piece vanilla bean
3 egg yolks, slightly beaten
1/8 tsp. allspice
1/8 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. rose water
whipped cream
Using a clean mortar and pestle reserved for cooking purposes, pound marigold petals. Or, crush with a spoon. Mix the salt, sugar and spices together. Scald milk with the marigolds and the vanilla bean. Remove the vanilla bean and add the slightly beaten yolks and dry ingredients. Cook on low heat. When the mixture coats the spoon, add rose water and cool.
Top with whipped cream, garnish with fresh marigold petals.
{The above recipe for "Beltane Marigold Custard" is quoted directly from Scott Cunningham's book "Wicca: A Guide For The Solitary Practitioner", page 153, Llewellyn Publications, 1988/1990.)

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Spring Equinox

OSTARA (March 21)
Ostara is the spring equinox, occurring when the night and day are of equal length. It is a festival of fertility and balance. During this time eggs are colored and placed on the altar, as well as rabbit figures and baskets of fresh flowers. Bless seeds for future planting or you can begin planting seeds indoors to be replanted outside once it is warm enough.
Herbs: Honeysuckle, jasmine, iris, mint
Incense: Violet, strawberry, jasmine
Colors: Pastel pinks, greens, blues and yellows
Gemstones: Aquamarine, red jasper
Foods: Hard boiled eggs, honeycakes, fresh fruits, seeds and leafy greens

  • You can celebrate the coming spring with a light and flavorful dish with lots of fresh veggies!
Eggplant Sandwiches
  • 1 eggplant sliced into rounds
  • 1 cup grated mozzarella
  • 4 Tbls. olive oil
  • 2 Tbls. lemon juice
  • salt and pepper (to taste)
  • 1tsp. fresh basil
  • Fresh leafy salad greens
  • Warm Italian bread
  • Sliced tomatoes
Whisk oil, lemon juice, basil, salt and pepper. Brush mixture onto each slice of eggplant. Place eggplant on baking sheet and broil for 2 to 3 minutes. Flip half of the slices over and sprinkle with cheese. Top with remaining eggplant to form little sandwiches. Broil and additional 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from oven and serve with bread, greens and tomato slices. Make additional oil and lemon mixture to toss greens and tomatoes with if you wish.
Or make homemade honey-lemon jelly for your offering cakes on Ostara!

Honey-Lemon Jelly
  • 5 to 6 lemons
  • 2-1/2 cups honey
  • 1 package (3 oz.) liquid pectin

Grate rind from lemons to measure 4 teaspoons; set aside. Squeeze juice from lemons to measure 3/4 cup pour lemon juice through fine strainer, discarding seeds and pulp. Combine rind, juice and honey in 6-quart saucepan, stirring well. Bring mixture to a rolling boil over high heat, stirring constantly. Quickly stir in pectin. Return mixture to a rolling boil, and boil, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Remove from heat; skim off foam with metal spoon, if necessary. Pour jelly quickly into 2 hot, sterilized pint jars, filling to 1/4 inch from tops; wipe jar rims. Cover immediately with metal lids and screw on bands. Process jars in boiling water bath for 5 minutes. Cool jars on wire rack.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

When it Snows - Make Snow Pea Salad!

I love snow peas! You can get them all year in your grocery and they are fabulous. So, we had a bit of a snow storm here in Kentucky and I thought I would make a little snow pea salad to fight off the winter blues.
This salad is full of magical properties: Snow peas - love and goddess magic, Radish - protection, Vinegar - purification.

Snow Pea and Radish Salad
1/2 cup thinly sliced radish
1 1/2 cups snow peas
6 Tbls. rice wine vinegar
1 Tbls. five spice powder
1 tsp. Chinese hot mustard
3-4 tbls. dark sesame oil
Blanch snow peas in boiling water for 30 seconds. Remove, drain and run under cold water to stop cooking and combine with sliced radish. Snow peas should still be crisp. Combine vinegar, five spice powder, oil and mustard with a wisk or shake in a jar. Pour over snow peas and radish. Toss to coat. Eat now or chill. This is so good!

Friday, February 1, 2008

Kentucky Kitchen Witch Imbolc Brunch
For our Imbolc celebration our little Circle is having a brunch on Saturday, February 2, 2008, including bacon and potato quiche, lemon raspberry muffins, salad and mimosas! We are going to make fairy houses to celebrate the coming of spring. I will add a tutorial and pictures of our houses when they are finished!
Close the circle:

Call to Brigid
In unison:

"Amid the darkness the Lady is stirring,
Gently awakening from frozen dreams,
All the world has awaited this moment
The return of the Maiden,
And Her promise of oncoming Spring."

Circle closer:

"Hail Lady Brigid, Goddess of creativity and heralder of the Spring.
We ask that you enter our circle and join us as we honor and thank you
For the gifts you bestow."

The eternal flame within
Red candle is lit by Circle closer. Each person sets a white candle in front of them and passes the red candle lighting their white candle. The red candle is extinguished.

In unison:

"Blessed Brigid of the golden flame, listen as we call your name
I invoke your spirit to burn in me, as I will, so mote it be."

Look into the flame of your candle and visualize Brigid's power of inspiration and transformation flowing through you and making your goal a reality. Allow the white candle to burn throughout your celebration.

Open the Circle.
Lemon Raspberry Muffins
1/2 cup plain yogurt
3 Tbls. vegetable oil
1 Tbls. lemon juice
2 egg whites
1/2 t. lemon extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup white sugar
2 t. baking powder
1/4 t. salt
1 t. grated lemon zest
1 cup frozen raspberries
2 Tbls. sugar for decoration
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease a 12 cup muffin tin, or line with paper liners.
  • In a large bowl, mix together the yogurt, oil, lemon juice, egg whites, and lemon extract.
  • In a separate bowl, stir together the flour, 3/4 cup sugar, baking powder, salt, and lemon zest. Gently stir in raspberries.
  • Spoon batter evenly into the muffin cups.
  • Sprinkle with remaining sugar.
  • Bake for 15 to 17 minutes or until the top springs back when lightly touched. Cool muffins on wire rack and enjoy.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Recipe for Imbolc Potato and Carrot Soup

Potato and Carrot Soup

2 Tbs. extra virgin olive oil
1 sweet onion, diced
4 carrots, peeled and sliced
1/2 head white cabbage, cored, thinly shredded
dash of nutmeg
1/4 tsp. curry powder
1/2 tsp. fennel
sea salt and freshly ground white pepper, to taste
5 cups vegetable broth or light chicken broth
6 Yukon Gold (or yellow) potatoes, peeled and cut
1/2 cup milk, or almond milk
1-2 Tbs. light cream, or soy cream
fresh chives, chopped, for garnish

In a heavy soup pot, heat the olive oil on medium heat, and sauté the onion until softened. Add the carrots, cabbage and spices, sea salt and white pepper, stir and cook for ten minutes. Add in the vegetable broth and potatoes, bring to a boil over high heat, then lower heat and simmer until vegetables are tender, about 20 to 30 minutes. When the vegetables are done, carefully ladle the soup mixture into a blender, reserving about a cup of the whole vegetable pieces in the soup pot. Cover the blender and puree the soup mixture until it is smooth, then pour the pureed soup back into the soup pot, stirring it together with the reserved vegetable pieces. Stir in 1/2 cup milk, and gently heat it through, being careful not to bring the soup to a boil.
Add in cream, if desired.
Garnish with fresh chopped chives.
Serves 4-6
  • Serve this soup with fresh baked herb biscuits and a salad topped with goat's milk cheese. All representing the coming of SPRING!

Friday, January 11, 2008

The lore of Brigid's Day (Imbolc)

One folk tradition that continues in both Christian and Pagan homes on St. Brigid's Day (or Imbolc) is that of the Brigid's Bed. The girls and young, unmarried women of the household or village create a corn dolly to represent Brigid, called the Brideog ("little Brigid" or "young Brigid"), adorning it with ribbons and baubles like shells or stones. They make a bed for the Brideog to lay in. On St. Brigid's Eve (Jan. 31), the girls and young women gather together in one house to stay up all night with the Brideog, and are later visited by all the young men of the community who must ask permission to enter the home, and then treat them and the corn dolly with respect.Brigid is said to walk the earth on Imbolc eve. Before going to bed, each member of the household may leave a piece of clothing or strip of cloth outside for Brigid to bless. The head of the household will smoor the fire and rakes the ashes smooth. In the morning, they look for some kind of mark on the ashes, a sign that Brigid has passed that way in the night or morning. The clothes or strips of cloth are brought inside, and believed to now have powers of healing and protection.On the following day, the girls carry the Brideog through the village or neighborhood, from house to house, where this representation of the Saint/goddess is welcomed with great honor. Adult women - those who are married or who run a household - stay home to welcome the Brigid procession, perhaps with an offering of coins or a snack. Since Brigid represents the light half of the year, and the power that will bring people from the dark season of winter into spring, her presence is very important at this time of year.

You can purchase a corn husk Brigid doll kit at a WONDERFUL pagan site!