Mabon Celebrations & Mabon Recipes
Mabon is the Pagan term for the celebration of the Autumnal Equinox. This is usually around the dates of September 21st-23rd of every year. Because Mabon celebrates the first official day of Fall, one can imagine the beautiful sites to be seen and sounds to be heard at this point of the year.
The leaves are changing colors, turning from emerald and forest greens to amber golds and scarlet reds. Perhaps you hear a light breeze whistle through the trees, or you feel the cool breeze brush your cheek. The nights are beginning to stretch longer and longer, and we're beginning to anticipate the cold winter season. But it is not winter yet, so we have something to celebrate. Let's celebrate the beginning of Fall. Let's celebrate Mabon.
In this article, we'll be talking a little about the autumnal equinox (Mabon) traditions, as well as looking at some of my favorite Mabon recipes for dinner and dessert.
The Autumnal Equinox Traditions
Mabon's traditions are many and range from tradition to tradition and also from person to person. However, many consider Mabon (the Autumnal Equinox) to be the Pagans' Thanksgiving. It is the second of three harvest festivals on the Wheel of the Year, preceded by Lughnasadh and Samhain to follow.
The ancient Irish Celts celebrated Mea'n Fo'mhair by honoring the green man (lord of the wood) on the Autumnal Equinox. The Celts in Wales celebrated the god Mabon, of whom this harvest festival takes its name. Mabon was a son of the god Modron, his name literally meaning "son of the mother". So it is taken that he was the divine child, and ironically was taken away from his mother (the Mother Goddess) after only three days of life. He was taken into the Underworld, until he was rescued by King Arthur (all of which can be read in the epic tale of "Culhwch and Olwen").
For Wiccans, Mabon is a harvest festival in which thanks is given to all that we have, particularly the fruits of our labor and the fruits of the earth. Wiccans also look at Mabon as a time when the great Mother Goddess is beginning to transition into her Crone form and the Lord prepares to die but will be reborn next Spring. The Moon takes its reign as the ruler of the sky, as the nights grow longer and the days grow shorter. Some traditional things to do include walking through forests, gathering seed pods and dried plants. You could make corn dollies to represent the harvest and decorate your altar and home with things like: acorns, oak sprigs, wheat stalks, bails of hay, fruits and nuts, pinecones, and dried leaves. Pumpkins, turnips, and squash are also traditional harvest decorations, all of which can be left up until Samhain.
Mabon Recipes: Dinner-time!
One of my Mabon traditions is to make a large and tasty dinner for my family. I prefer to use ingredients that remind me of Fall and the harvest. If you are able to use some of your own harvested herbs and vegetables, that's even better. Some of the more traditional Mabon recipes should include some or all of the following: grains, fruits and veggies, corn, beans, and squash.
The point to a perfect Mabon dinner is the intentions put into the meal. While making your Mabon meal, focus on what the harvest means to you and how thankful you are to have your family and the bounty of blessings the god and goddess have provided for us.
You can try out these Mabon Recipes for a beautiful Autumnal Equinox Dinner:
Herb Roasted Chicken
Free-Range Young Chicken (or a larger bird depending on the crowd you're feeding)
2-3 lemons, cut into eighths
Handful of Thyme sprigs
Handful of Rosemary Sprigs
Handful of Lemon Balm (or Sage)
1 Medium Onion, each cut into eighths
1 stick unsalted butter
Salt and Pepper
2-3 tbsp. dried Parsley
1. Remove the insides of the chicken, rinse the chicken well and pat dry. Preheat Oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Sprinkle considerable amount of salt and pepper over chicken's body. Sprinkle parsley over chicken and rub all over chicken. Rub salt and pepper all over chicken. Spray inside of chicken with lemon juice.
3. Stuff chicken's inside with herbs of your choice, lemon quarters, and onion quarters.
4. Tie chicken's legs together with string or twine.
5. Place chicken in deep metal baking pan, bake for 20 minutes per pound. Baste chicken with melted butter frequently.
Lemon Thyme Green Beans
Bag of fresh green beans
2 sprigs Thyme
2 tbsp. lemon juice
1. Clean and trim all green beans.
2. Place green beans in vegetable steamer with 2 sprigs of thyme. Dress with lemon juice.
3. Steam about 10 minutes.
4. Serve hot with meal.
Mabon Recipes: Apple Pie!
There's no fruit that reminds me more of the Fall than the apple. And if you're an American, you'll agree that apple pie is a traditional American dessert...so how perfect is the apple pie as a traditional American Mabon dessert? The following Mabon recipe is for apple pie, my great grandmother's way.
Mabon Apple Pie:
6 medium apples (kind is your choice)
3 tbsp melted butter
2 egg yolks
1 cup sugar
1 lemon, juice and rind
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 recipe Plain Pastry
1 recipe Meringue I
1. Prepare a sauce of apples. When tender, rub through sieve and add butter.
2. Cool, add beaten eggs, sugar, lemon juice, and rind.
3. Stir in cream. Line piepan with pastry and pour in filling.
4. Bake in hot oven (425 degrees F) for 10 minutes; reduce temp. to moderate (350 degrees F) and bake 30 minutes longer.
5. Top with meringue when cold and proceed as directed.
Makes 1 9" pie.
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