Cranberry & Peppermint Honey Cake: Hail To The Mothers!

Originally posted on gather:
It’s no secret that baking confections, cookies and fruit cakes have long been part of  feminine customs surrounding the winter holidays. But one beautiful baking tradition is now almost entirely forgotten, and it served as the inspiration for this fruity, dense Mother’s Night Honey Cake. And while it may be a bit…

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Citrusy Spruce Glazed Shortbread: Flavour Of The Forest

This recipe was inspired by an incredibly lovely and vigourous Sitka Spruce tree that lives in a woodland area near my neighborhood. Standing out amongst the other conifers, her bluish-white branches positively sparkle on dreary rainy days. At first I was sure she was a Blue or White Spruce, but on closer look, I now […]

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Aromatic & Spicy Juniper Berry Sugar Stars

Juniper Berry is simply divine. Aromatic and perfumey, it is just the perfect spice for a buttery cookie. Growing on Vancouver Island, and all over the world, common junipers gorgeous blue-black berries (actually tiny cones) are best known as the taste ingredient of gin. For those who have never encountered the juniper berry, imagine the […]

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Remembering The Deer Mother Of Winter Solstice

It’s the season when we tell children the tales of Santa and his flying reindeer. But this year why not tell the story of the sacred “Deer Mother” of old? Taking flight from the darkest, longest night of the year, it was she who brought the life-giving light of the sun back to the land, […]

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Woodland Shortbread: Two Recipes for Foraged Fir Biscuits

“For the first time since he had entered Narnia he saw the dark green of a fir tree.” Since childhood, I’ve had a powerful affection for conifers. Growing up in Saskatchewan, these motherly trees provided deep dark refuge from the summer heat. We would travel five hours to spend two weeks among the Jack Pine, […]

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Grand Fir Dark Nougat: Winter Solstice Sweets

I found the recipe for this “extraordinary and irresistible traditional Christmas candy” in a treasured old cookbook “The Auberge of The Flowering Hearth”. Created with only three ingredients, pine honey, toasted almonds and a pinch of thyme, it is caramelized down into a dark, delectable, chewy brittle known as Black Nougat. Well, I was enchanted. Not […]

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Winter Medicine: Delicious & Warming Tonic Syrups

When dark, winter days challenge our bodies as well as our spirits, nothing makes a better remedy than old-fashioned tonic syrups. Time-tested & true, these potent preventatives and remedial healers call on the nourishing, medicinal powers of tonic plants and adaptogenic herbs, berries, honey and warming spices. And not only will they help fortify your […]

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Cranberry & Peppermint Honey Cake: Hail To The Mothers!

It’s no secret that baking confections, cookies and fruit cakes have long been part of feminine customs surrounding the winter holidays. But one beautiful baking tradition is now almost entirely forgotten, and it served as the inspiration for this fruity, dense Mother’s Night Honey Cake. And while it may be a bit rustic, I tried to […]

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The Perfect Yuletide Tipple: Emily Han’s Douglas-fir Liqueur

Here at Gather we adore Emily Han! Equally at home in hiking boots as she is in the kitchen, her work has inspired us for years. One of the first to transform wild edibles from survival food into good cuisine, her recipes make wild foods accessible, simple to prepare—and most of all, delicious. You can imagine how thrilled […]

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When days darken, cold winds blow, and the damp settles into our lungs and bones, we can turn to our ancient plant allies, the evergreen and ever vital, conifers. Towering over the forest canopy, their top branches are always nourished by the sun but their roots extend deeply into the earth. And when winter makes demands […]

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Deeply Nourishing Seasonal Medicine: Delectable Dandelion Root Treats!

Tis the season for harvesting that super nutritious and medicinal powerhouse—dandelion root! According to herbalist Susun Weed, dandelion roots are best harvested in late fall when they are sweetest and highest in medicinal potency. And while they’re mostly used in tinctures and teas for their many amazing health benefits, my favourite seasonal way to enjoy […]

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The Magic of Conifers: A Video

As cold and flu season begins to loom, it’s time to call on the protective and healing powers of conifers. Towering over the forest canopy, their top branches are always nourished by the sun but their roots extend deeply into the earth. And when winter makes demands on our reserves of energy, endurance and warmth, […]

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Priestesses Of The Dead: A Halloween Vigil

Halloween takes its roots in ancient festivals and feasts honouring the dead. Which makes it a perfect time to remember the Haliorunna, the oracular priestesses of the “underworld mysteries” whose rites of divination and ancestor veneration were demonized and extinguished by the Church. It was Max Dashu’s wonderful book Witches and Pagans Women in European […]

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Foraging & Cooking with Coastal Mugwort: A Salt, A Honey & Vinegar

Every year I fall for a particular plant and start to use it in practically everything. This year I’ve been bewitched by the deep smoky, earthy and sagey flavour of Suksdorf sagewort or coastal mugwort. Of all the mugworts I know, our native suksdorf sagewort has to be one of the most deliciously aromatic -and […]

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Rowan Berry Kitchen Witchery: Two Recipes

For the past couple of weeks, I’ve been experimenting with some kitchen witch cuisine for our upcoming Hallowe’en Night of Herbal Magick with herbalist Betty Norton. We’re going to be concocting some magical cookery with the sacred plants and herbs of Samhain, but most especially the scarlet bright berries of Rowan or Mountain Ash – long […]

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“Soul Cakes” for an Old-Fashioned All Hallows Eve

Originally posted on gather:
“A soule cake, a soule cake, Have mercy on all Christen soules for a soule-cake.”  John Aubrey, 17th century I’ve been researching old world recipes in search of Halloween food inspiration, and these sweet little barmbrack “soul cakes”  are the result. And while we may think of all things pumpkin when…

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Double Chocolate Curly Dock Seed Cake: A Healthy, Decadent Delight!

I adore chocolate cake and spend a great deal of time drooling over Pinterest recipes. But lately, a lot of moody luscious cakes made with “healthy” buckwheat have been especially catching my eye.  And because those tall reddish-brown spires of curly dock seeds growing in fields, yards and lanes are from the buckwheat family – I put two […]

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Wildcrafted “Boursin”: A Tangy, Garlicky, Yogurt Cheese

I just love this cheese! Brimming with vitalizing nutrients and gut healthy probiotics, this beautiful “Boursin” yogurt cheese is not only a show stopper at parties, it’s absolutely delicious, easy to make, inexpensive, and really, really good for you. You can make creamy spreadable version (like cream cheese) which is what I’ve pictured here or […]

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Spicy & Sweet Hawthorn Ketchup: Reviving a Traditional Recipe

Originally posted on gather:
Thick and robustly tangy, my all-time favorite condiment is good old fashioned “Haws Ketchup”. Made from the bright crimson berries of the Hawthorn tree (which you can find a stone’s throw away from where ever you stand in Victoria) it compliments roasted meats, scrambled eggs and a big basket of steaming…

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Wild Soda for the Autumn Equinox

The leaves are falling and the last of the summer fruits are hanging heavy. The autumn equinox is fast approaching. This is my favourite time of year. More than spring, this is when I feel energized. This turning inward time lifts my spirits and my thoughts grow clearer.

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Wild Green Custard & Chanterelle Tart

It may still be as hot as blazes out there but soon cooler weather and increasing rain will yield a nutrient-rich bounty of returning greens and mushrooms! This creamy & cheesy dish will help you take delicious advantage of both, plus it’s so packed with vitamins, minerals, and critical nutrients, it could be considered a veritable […]

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Lavender & Lovage Seed Digestive Biscuits: Non-Gluten, Vegan and Good For The Tummy

It’s no wonder the digestive biscuit is a long-standing tradition. Its simple, gentle nature doesn’t make overt demands on the palate or the stomach, yet it is sweet and satisfying as an afternoon or evening snack. In fact, Brits love their digestive biscuits so much they consumed 420,000 tonnes of them in 2016! So for my Herbal Yoga […]

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Pineapple Weed Comfort Cookies: A Wildly Loving Treat

Everyone knows comfort foods are a great coping mechanism for soothing negative feelings – which is why these Pineapple Cookies will be served at my Herbal Yoga Workshop for Anxiety & Depression.  Their sweet gentle aroma and flavour (a cross between zingy pineapple and soothing chamomile) make a perfect treat for when we’re feeling down […]

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Nettle Seed & Dandelion Blossom Bars: Superfood !

My sister-in-law Gloria is an avid rower who races frequently with her Dragon Boat Team. Last year as a special request, she asked for a wildcrafted energy bar. I knew I wanted to make something with nettle seeds (tell you why shortly) but I could never find enough seeds on hand without decimating entire nettle […]

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Calming, Cleansing And Rejuvenating Herbal Treats For Yoga (or just anytime!)

Behold the Lemon Balm & Wild Rose Tea and Chocolate Rose & Dandelion Root Energy Bites I’ll be serving for Restorative Herbal Yoga For Spring – the very first session of The Yoga Apothecary. Because I’m so grateful that this very first class is full (and that so many others of you have wanted to […]

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