ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Religion and Philosophy»
  • Paganism & Witchcraft

Wiccan Wheel of the Year: Imbolc Recipes and Ideas for the Sabbat Feast

Updated on August 13, 2016
WiccanSage profile image

Sage has been celebrating the Wheel of the Year with her family for 25 years as a Wiccan; she's like the NeoPagan Martha Stewart.

Imbolc Foods

One part of the holiday celebration that many Wiccans or Pagans look forward to is the feast- if you are part of a coven or going to a large, open ritual, you'll want to bring a seasonal dish to share. If you are having a smaller gathering in your home with family and friends, you'll want to put out a nice spread for your guests. Even if you're a solitary, it's a good idea to make yourself something delicious and traditional for the holiday season.

Whether you're looking for dinner, brunch, dessert, something to take on a picnic or something simple to enjoy at the altar, I'm going to give you some ideas and tips for preparing foods that are just perfect for the occasion-- and for some great recipes, I'm going to turn to some fellow hubbers.


Food, Glorious Food!

Source
Witch in the Kitchen: Magical Cooking for All Seasons
Witch in the Kitchen: Magical Cooking for All Seasons

Must have for the kitchen Witch or any Wiccan with a domestic bend-- it's books like this that makes the hearthfires seem warmer.

 

Imbolc Fare

The types of food that fit perfectly with the Imbolc season fall into several categories:

Hearty winter dishes: Meat roasts, root veggies and heavy sauce are great for a big family meal. For something equally good but simpler, hearty stews or even soups are great.

Preserves: Deep into the winter at this time of year, the fresh foods and game were usually gone and people were surviving on whatever they pickled, canned or dried. Smoked, dried meats, picked veggies and fruit preserves go nicely. Honey, also, is ideal because it doesn't go bad.

Dairy dishes: Imbolc comes from the Gaelic world "Oilemc" which literally translates to "ewe's milk"... the whole reason the season was celebrated is because in the depth of winter came a sign that spring was on the way (the birth of baby lambs) and a new food source: milk. No matter how bleak, this sign increased your chance of survival.

So any dishes involving eggs, cream, or-- my favorite-- cheese go really well.

Breads: Is there a single Pagan sabbat that is complete without some kind of bread? During Imbolc, I like to make hearty, rich, dark breads, preferably with dried fruits or seeds in them. Of course, it's a great time to pull out the honey and preserves.

Legumes: beans, nuts, seeds, etc. are another great winter food, and add protein and heartiness to veggie dishes without adding meat.

Fruits: In my part of the world, strawberries season starts at Imbolc, and you can find the hugest, sweetest, ripest red berries for really cheap, so I make a lot of strawberry dishes at Imbolc. See what seasonal fruits are available where you live in the winter-- try pears, oranges and grapefruits, or persimmons.

Sweets: so what's a holiday without a treat? Don't forget to trudge out your favorite cake, pie and cookie recipes for Imbolc. No one is going to complain.

Yum!

Have some ham!
Have some ham!

Delicious Recipes from Fellow Hubbers that are Great for Imbolc

I wanted to see what kinds of recipes other Hub Pages authors might have, and I found a wealth of really great looking recipe candidates! For a homestyle-Imbolc feast, you might want to try one of these dishes:

Savory Oven-Baked Pot Roast Recipe by Vespawoolf looks like an absolutely classic, melt-in-your-mouth dish.

Potato Ham Soup looks like a great, rib-sticking meal with some spice for heat lovers. This Hub is charming, written by Just Ask Susan.

Daisydayz has made a delectable-looking recipe for How to cook a Ham - Honey, Mustard and Marmalade Glazed Ham. Looks fantastic.

My favorite flavors, garlic and herb, are found in a hub recipe by courtneylajoie for Garlic and Herb Pork Sirloin Mini-Roast. Great for those who are having a small sabbat and don't want to make too huge a meal.

Vegetarians, if you're looking for something simple but special, check out this Simple Daal Tadka (Yellow Lentil Stew) by Moon Lightened. The gorgeous color alone makes it holiday-worthy fare.

I just can't wait to put some of these in my mouth!

This is basically what I use

Cuisinart Chef's Classic Stainless 16-Inch Rectangular Roaster with Rack, 7117-16UR
Cuisinart Chef's Classic Stainless 16-Inch Rectangular Roaster with Rack, 7117-16UR

I like a stainless steel rack and pan. I've had mine for many years and it still serves me well. I don't like the non-stick pans, because if I want to make gravy directly in the pan you can't use a wire whisk. But a set-up like this makes a perfect chicken-- the rack keeps the air circulating around it so it browns and crisps, rather than stews in its own juice.

 

My Roast Chicken and Root veggies

One of my family's traditional dishes to put out on Imbolc is a roast chicken with root veggies. I'm not a "by the recipe" type cook, so allow me to give you a run-down of how I prepare my chicken, which is pretty simple.

I think the key is in the dry brine- and it's so simple! I unwrap a frozen chicken about 3/4 days ahead of time, sprinkle it liberally with about 2 tbsp kosher salt mixed with 2 tbsps of ground herbs (rosemary, thyme and sage are my favorites). Wrap it up in plastic and refrigerate until the day before. It brines while it thaws.

The day before, I take it out, rinse it off, take out the giblet bag and neg, pat it dry and put it back in the fridge completely uncovered, overnight-- the drier the skin, the better it browns.

Then I throw it in a baking pan with a bunch of cut root veggies and onions. I sprinkle the veggies with herbs, salt and pepper and drizzle olive oil (I like to infuse my oil with garlic, but that's optional). I slather up the chicken and cook it on 350 for 20 minutes per pound. I start it upside-down and flip it once.

And the final key-- let it rest 30 minutes before carving!

It really is a simple but delicious meal, and chicken isn't going to break the food budget for the month.

A quick rundown of ingredients for your shopping list: a whole roasting chicken, kosher salt, fresh or dried ground herbs (I like rosemary, sage, thyme), root veggies (potato, parsnips, carrots, turnips, beets, etc.), olive oil, onions, garlic, salt and pepper.

Pass the Cheese, Please

Cheese Platters - gotta love 'em!
Cheese Platters - gotta love 'em! | Source

A great resource

Candlemas: Feast of Flames (Holiday Series)
Candlemas: Feast of Flames (Holiday Series)

When I first became Wiccan, it was hard to find any Wiccan books at all. Now, you can find an entire book just on Imbolc. It's awesome. Not really strong in history; but you probably aren't looking for anything scholarly. What's really great about the book is all the inspiring ideas in ways to celebrate.

 

Sabbat Potlucks: Easy Covered Dish Options

A cheese platter-- simple, seasonal, and you don't have to cook. Seriously, who doesn't love a little platter of cheese samplings? Get a couple of different kinds of cheeses, a small bowl of grapes and some crackers, and you're in business. It is so unfussy yet everyone will jump on it-- watch.

And if you are celebrating alone as a Solitary and are a fellow cheese lover-- Imbolc is a great excuse to indulge for your own ritual feast. I know that I don't like going through big cooking productions when I'm going to be alone for a holiday, so this kind of sinful indulgence feels justified for special occasions.

Another simple but brilliant dairy dish for the Imbolc potluck is (pardon the phrase) deviled eggs.

Hubber crazyhorseghost gives us a simple but beautiful hub for Delicious Deviled Eggs Recipe

One item that is always a big HIT when I go to Pagan Potlucks is hummus!

I must credit this recipe to my son, a budding chef-- but he's still a teen so I can't release his name on the internet. However, he came up with this fabulously unique and easy Honey and Pickled Ginger Hummus recipe. You don't even have to cook! Just take put the blender and throw in:

1 drained can of chick peas, 3 tbsp tahini, juice of 1/2 lemon, 1 tbsp olive oil, about 1/4 cup pickled ginger, 2 tbsp honey, and salt & pepper to taste.

Puree, adding a little bit of water at a time just to loosen it up enough to keep things moving in the blender. But you don't want to thin it out too much.

It's vegan-- so let your friends know they can indulge. Serve with whatever raw veggies, tortilla chips, pita quarters or crackers you like.

Finally, bread... oh yeah.

a couple of gorgeous loaves of bread with a savory herbal butter spread or some preserves or honey to drizzle on it is just delightful. Kittythedreamer gives a great, easy bread idea using store bought bread dough on her most awesome lens, Celebrating Imbolc: Imbolc Food, Imbolc Traditions, and Imbolc Crafts. You should definitely check it out if you're planning your Imbolc celebration.

How Sweet it Is

Sweet fruits for a sweet celebration.
Sweet fruits for a sweet celebration. | Source

Great for melting chocolate dip

Hamilton Beach 33101 Party Dipper Food Warmer
Hamilton Beach 33101 Party Dipper Food Warmer

I use this product whenever I want to serve cheese sauces, melted chocolate or hot dips. It makes it so much more simple, and you can even grab it on the go for potlucks.

 

But What About Desserts?

Oh, heck no, I can't go without getting into desserts. Desserts are the best part of the holiday.

When I lived up north, a nice poached pear in raspberry sauce fit the bill. Given with a scoop of vanilla ice cream-- sublime.

Where I live now, you practically cannot walk down the street without tripping over a produce vendor selling strawberries by the flat. I cannot resist them.

Chocolate covered strawberries are just so easy to make-- melt your chocolate chips in a microwavable bowl, stirring ever 30 seconds or so. Then dip your washed, dried berries in them, and put them out on waxed paper. 2 hours in the refrigerator and they're good to go.


If you prefer, fill a small crock pot with chocolate chips and melt them-- then have your dessert fondue-style. Put out strawberries, pears, mandarin orange slices, along with some sharp cheese slices and a few cookies.

Of course, if you really want to go all out...

To me, if you really want to go all out and do some baking, there is no more appropriate cake than a Tres Leche (three milk) cake. Anyone who loves to dunk their cake in their milk will positively be in heaven at the bite of a cake that has been soaked in sweet milks.

Sure enough, I've found a hubber -- Lamme -- who has provided us with Pastel de Tres Leches or Tres Leches Cake (3 Milk Cake).

Poll - Tell Me...

are you going to use any of these recipes this Imbolc?

See results

I hope you found inspiriation...

I hope you've found the great ideas you were looking for here, or maybe you are going to try one of the recommended recipes. To me, this is what holidays are really about-- not just formal ritual and prayers, but gathering with family or community, breaking bread, partaking of the Earth's bounty. I feel like when I eat seasonal foods, I take in their essence and they are part of me.

For other great Imbolc ideas-- crafts, music, rituals, spells and more, or ideas for any of the Sabbats on the Wiccan Wheel of the Year, please check out my Wheel of the Year article directory. It's a collection that's growing all the time!

Image Credits

All images are in the Public Domain and available at Pixabay.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • WiccanSage profile image
      Author

      Mackenzie Sage Wright 4 years ago

      Thanks Phyllis. I have to give most of the credit to the awesome Hubbers recipes that look so great. But I'm glad I could point you to some that you enjoyed. Blessed Imbolc!

    • Phyllis Doyle profile image

      Phyllis Doyle Burns 4 years ago from High desert of Nevada.

      My gosh, Sage, this is a wonderful and very useful hub. I have many friends who are of the Wiccan or Pagan faiths and it really interests me. Your ideas for celebrating Imbolc are really helpful and very interesting. Olive oil, garlic, rosemary and thyme have always been in my kitchen, I would feel lost in cooking without them -- I like to infuse the olive oil with garlic, too. In fact, I usually have three bottles of olive oil, one plain, one garlic and one rosemary and thyme. Thanks for sharing these recipe and food ideas for Imbolc. I really enjoyed reading this hub.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: "https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr"

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)