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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in kitchen witchery

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Food is Magic: Color Medicine

Color has a profound effect on our psychological and physical health. Consider carefully the colors that surround you; each of us have special colors that encourage sound body and mind. For example, if you have a weight issue and lack ambition or energy, you may need more orange in your life. Wear orange clothes and eat foods associated with orange, such as red plums and wax beans. Here are some basic color connections:

Violet is associated with sentiment, melancholy, and religious devotion and can be enhanced by eating chocolate, thyme, and scallops.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Kitchen Witch Alchemy

Marigold blossoms gathered at high noon will raise your energy level.

Lettuce juice (made in a juicer or food processor) rubbed on your temples and forehead will dispel sleeplessness.

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Potions, Prayers and Invocations for a Good Night’s Sleep

Several years ago, I went through a phase where I woke up at 4 am, no matter what time I went to bed. I had just moved after a difficult breakup and was wholly unsettled. My coworkers, who were such kind people that they published the Random Acts of Kindness books, probably noticed as I became more fatigued and bedraggled but said nothing. This went on for many weeks. Finally, I mentioned to my boss I was having  sleep disruptions and she said, “Oh, 4 am; the hour of anxiety.” She had experienced the same which, in her case,  was due to hypervigilence where she could not “shut down” and going over her to-list in her mind, etc  A brilliant Buddhist, she noted her spiritual practice was her path to restored health and deep rest. In this instance, I knew my path could do the same for me. And it has. I pondered the wisdom of my Aunt Edie and the hedge witches of yore and realized I had gotten away from my roots. I was a farm girl yet I was spending zero time outdoors. I started going for daily walks in Golden Gate Park, unpacked my witchy tools, oil and teas and got some herb post growing on the windowsills and stoop of my tiny new apartment dwelling, I  self-soothed with these simple steps. It was not overnight but, soon enough, I was sleeping through the night, awakening refreshed. Sleep itself is healing and these remedies will keep you rested and rosy!

 Respite Rite: A Good Night’s Sleep Herbs

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KItchen Witch Cures: Spice and Herbal Healers

Did you know your pantry is like a pharmacy?  Thankfully, it is far cheaper. Cumin is loaded with phyto-chemical, antioxidants, iron, copper, calcium, potassium, manganese, selenium, zinc and magnesium and contains high amounts of B-complex. Cumin helps with insomnia.  Cinnamon is truly a power spice. Just half a teaspoon daily can dramatically reduce blood glucose levels in those with type 2 diabetes and lower cholesterol. Cayennepromotes circulation and boosts metabolism. Clove is an antifungal and abets toothaches. Nutrient-rich parsley is a detoxifying herb and acts as anti-inflammatory and anti-spasmodic helping conditions from colic to indigestion. Rub it on itchy skin for instant relief! Sage is very beneficial in treating gum and throat infections. Sage tea has helped ease depression and anxiety for generations. Thyme is a cure for a hangover and doubles to alleviate colds and bronchitis. Cilantro is a good source of iron, magnesium, phytonutrients and flavonoids and is also high in dietary fiber. Cilantro has been used for thousands of years as a digestive, lowering blood sugar having hypoglycemic properties, possibly the result of stimulating insulin secretion. Ginger stimulates circulation and is an excellent digestive, aiding in absorption of food and rids bloat. Immune champion turmeric boosts production of antioxidants and reduction of inflammation. Blue Zone centenarians credit their long healthy life by drinking turmeric-root tea daily. Pack your pantry with these seasonings for optimal health and happiness.

 

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Grains, Spirits, and the Spurtle

It started when I was having trouble buying grains -- rice, flour, oats, you name it -- due to the quarantine panic. I looked in the pantry and realized that we had somehow previously amassed 10 lbs of grits along with 5 lbs of cornmeal -- plenty to get us through a temporary grain shortage. I was relieved, and my gratitude made me think of my ancestors and their reliance on grains, and of the ancestors of peoples around the world who did the same. Grains are sacred everywhere, although the specific grains will differ according to location.

 

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    It's my understanding that cherry wood is toxic containing cyanide. Your land spirits are looking after you to have left the mapl
  • The Cunning Wife
    The Cunning Wife says #
    Cherry wood does contain traces of cyanide -- definitely not good to eat (unlike the fruits)! Because the wood contains such a sma
Witch's Brew: Skullcap Tincture for Calm

This simple and easy recipe makes a very fine tincture with many medicinal uses. I also suggest you start keeping clean muslin or cheesecloth, big jars and several colored glass bottles and canning jars with lids for storing your handiwork.

Gather together:

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Everyday Elements Part 1: Cooking and Cleaning

Even in the busiest, most crowded, modern, neon-lit metropolitan areas, we come into close contact with the elements countless times a day. Even – or, especially – with all our technology we truly cannot live without them!

I’m often reminded of a line from one of my favorite songs by Lady Isadora, a witch, priestess and talented singer/songwriter who pioneered the Pagan musical genre in the early 1980s. It is from her song “Witch” – “I call myself a witch because I’m not afraid to tell that the magic is in life itself, not just in some ancient book or secret spell”.

Indeed it is! Magic is everywhere at all times and it is manifested through the elements in more ways than we sometimes realize. Even the most devoted Pagan or witch can struggle to maintain their ideal practice in this demanding, fast-paced age. However, much comes down to perspective and a slight shift in our approach to “mundane” tasks can go a long way toward helping us maintain a wonderful connection to nature and to enhance our magic.

There are four things that, for the most part, we all do on a regular basis, and they each correspond nicely to the four elements: cooking, cleaning, healing and learning – fire, water, earth and air, respectively. Simple awareness and gratitude for the elements and all they allow us to accomplish in our daily lives can help create all manner of easy yet effective rituals, grounding states of mind and to raise our vibrations.


Cooking – Fire

Even if you don’t manage anything more complex than microwaving a Stouffer’s entrée or brewing a pot of coffee, not much cooking can be accomplished without fire in some form or another. A pot of boiling water on a ceramic cooktop can easily conjure images and the energy of an old bubbling cauldron suspended over an open flame in a hearth, and be just as magical.

Obviously real cooking – that is, from scratch or close to it, and going through steps to peel, chop, sauté, flambé, marinate and macerate different fresh ingredients – is not only always more likely to be much more healthy, but it is a wonderful way to connect to ancestors and can be very meditative and easily ritualized.

There are so many wonderful books about kitchen witchery that teach about spells that can be incorporated into cooking, include magical and unique recipes specifically designed for sabbats, and give ideas for turning your whole kitchen into a shrine/altar to nourishment, magic and, of course, fire!

One of my favorite such books, at least that I actually own, is “The Kitchen Witch’s Cookbook” by Patricia Telesco. While I am not Wiccan, I find Scott Cunningham’s “Wicca in the Kitchen” to be a wonderful reference for the general energies and associations of most herbs, fruits, vegetables and several other ingredients. I feel it could have easily (and perhaps more accurately) been entitled simply “Witchcraft in the Kitchen”, but that’s just my opinion based on the content of the book which doesn’t seem to reflect the specificity of just Wicca.

Another favorite is “A Sorcerer’s Cookbook”, by Brigitte Bulard-Cordeau. It is not exactly geared toward the kind of magic and ritual that specifically pagan kitchen witchery books are, but it is visually stunning, filled with very unique and interesting recipes and still has lots of fun and enlightening information about folklore, history and magical uses associated with the ingredients and recipes.

Fire is the great transformer of the elements, and its use in cooking and preparing the food that we ingest can also transform us, our health and energy. No matter what we make or how, it all begins with fire.

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