Marchpane Cookies for the Rose Queens

Marchpane was one of the most popular Tudor confections  – at least for those who could afford it.  Created from costly ground almonds, sugar and rosewater, moulded into shapes and baked, decorated with coloured glazes, gilded fruit and “comfits”,  then assembled into elaborate centrepieces, it was found only on the most aristocratic and royal tables.  […]

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Tarta De Venus: A Not So Traditional Easter Cake

This simple tart is inspired by the Tarta de Santiago,  a very dense, moist, almond cake traditionally served during Holy Week in Spain. It usually features the image of the St. James Cross dusted in powdered sugar but I went with a scallop shell instead. Venus goddess of love, beauty and fertility mythically arose from […]

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Baba Yaga’s Wild Spiced Honey Cookies

Ever since I called upon Baba Yaga to be my winter baking muse – I’ve had nothing but trouble.  Which should have been no surprise, Baba Yaga is renowned for testing your mettle with endless impossible tasks which determine whether she will help you- or hinder you – according to her liking! And from burning, […]

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Cake For The Priestesses Of The Dead

Halloween takes its roots in ancient festivals and feasts honouring the dead, like Samhain. Which makes it a perfect time for cake…not just any cake, but a cake in remembrance of the Haliorunna. Never heard of them? They were the oracular priestesses of the “underworld mysteries” whose rites of divination and ancestor veneration were demonized and […]

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Diana’s Apple Pear Cake w/Queen Anne Lace: Fit for a Goddess!

As Goddess of the Wild and Queen of the Woodlands, Diana holds a special place in my forager’s heart. And so for her birthday, I wanted to make a special cake (as per ancient tradition) to give thanks to “She Who Provides.” And I think this moist luscious cake, made from foraged apples and pears […]

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The First Pizza? Great Goddess Herbed Cheese: Reviving The Spring Offering Of Moretum

This Roman springtime dish is a kind of cheesy pesto once eaten in honour of the Goddess Cybele, The Magna Mater (The Great Mother). And according to Ovid, Moretum descends from a time ancient people drank only pure milk and ate only “the herbs that the earth bore of its free will.”  And as we’ll […]

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Artemisia Moontime Elixir:  A Recipe For Dream Magic

“Has artemisia come to help us unlock the deep dreams that day to day living has swept seemingly out of reach? Has she come to guard us and protect us while we realign ourselves with the strength of feminine energy? Has she come–with her liver cleansing and digestive tonic– to help ease the pain of […]

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Pinterest: Regressive Feminist Scourge or Virtual Woman’s Temple?

(Note: I wrote this several years ago and while Instagram has now outstripped Pinterest as women’s favoured platform for sharing recipes and home decor,  I’m reposting the article because the issues it addresses are sadly far from outdated). Teeming with endless pictures of magnificent cakes, sumptuous floral bouquets and festive holiday decorations, millions of women […]

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Hot Cross Buns: A Recipe for Springtime Magic!

Right now every bakery to big-box superstore that is open has yeasty, doughy Hot Cross Buns for sale. Most feature large swipes of thick white icing that are irresistible, at least to me. Their popular longevity is amazing considering their history dates back to the dawn of civilization! According to a variety of food scholars, […]

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Celebrate Spring! The Ancient Magical Language of Eggs

Coloured with magical dyes and painted with magical symbols, eggs have played a central role in spring rites and feasts for thousands of years. From Egypt, Persia, Russia to Europe eggs were sacred objects embodying the essence of life. For northern European peoples eggs embodied the fertilizing power of the spring sun because it was […]

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Gather’s Guide For Celebrating The Midwinter Festival Of Lights

Rediscover the ancient food magic of the Midwinter Feast of Lights. Known to the Celts as Imbolc or Brigid’s Feast Day, it celebrated the arrival of the sun goddess Brigid (and the first stirrings of spring) with oodles of candles and plenty of magical foods – all of which ensured Brigid’s blessings in the coming […]

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Queen of The May: Enchanting Hawthorn Blossom Cordial

“May, queen of blossoms, and fulfilling flowers,  what pretty music Shall we charm the hours? Wilt thou have pipe and reed, Blown in the open mead? Or to the lute give heed, in the green bowers.”— Lord Edward Thurlow Sacred to fairies, witches, and the goddesses of old, no tree is more central to “Going a […]

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Rowan Berry Kitchen Witchery: Two Recipes

From Rowan Berry Syrup, Jelly, Fudge, Ketchup, Chutney, Soup and Rowan Berry Caramels, one of my favourite magical foods are the bright red berries of the Witches Tree. Once revered as the Queen of High Places and Enchantress of The Woods, few of us remember that from the British Isles to the Norse Countries, Rowan […]

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Protectors Of The Earth: The Radical Legacy Of The Witch

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about witches. Not just because top ten lists of hot tv witches and sexy Halloween selfies currently swamp my social media feeds, but because my tables and shelves are currently so laden with herbs, plants, berries, phials and bottles that if an inquisitor of old were to enter, […]

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Beautiful Venus Vinegar: Autumn Medicine & Magic

This magical Venus Vinegar is composed of the most vitalizing wild foods, herbs and medicines offered by mother nature this season. And it is no ordinary herbal vinegar, but a nutrient-rich, beautifying, fortifying tonic that is fruity, tangy, spicy and earthy all in one. And a splash of its beautiful zesty flavours will not only bring […]

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Cornucopia Magic: Invoking The Horn of Plenty

Spilling with fruits, grains, gourds and flowers, this beloved emblem of earthly abundance, pleasure, healing and good fortune has been presiding over harvest festivals, feasts, and revelry – since time immemorial. Today the cornucopia still adorns Thanksgiving tables, but its mystical significance and magical power are barely remembered, never mind utilized. So this Thanksgiving why […]

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Women & Wild French Cookery: Reviving Our Culinary “Joie de Vivre”

Today top restaurants are lauded for making wild food into “high cuisine” – but I am inspired by a much older (and heartier) gastronomic tradition. One in which dishes like Veloute aux Sorties (Nettle soup with Potatoes, Cream and Butter) and Poulet au Bon Join Sauce Meliot (Chicken in a Sweet Clover Sauce) were just […]

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Rose Cupcakes: A Divinely Feminine Confection

“Mystery glows in the rose bed, the secret is hidden in the rose.” 12th Century Persian Poem Don’t underestimate this demure little cupcake. Much more than overindulgence in sugar or cupcake feminism, this divine rose confection is a direct connection to a feminine spiritual heritage thousands of years old.  And they offer a scent and […]

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