Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Samhain (and Insomnia)!

One year is ending.  We celebrate the lives of those who have passed beyond the veil, and we welcome them back for a visit.  The veil remains thin until the new year beings at the winter solstice, so keep your eyes and ears open!  It couldn’t hurt to keep a place on the altar for your ancestors during this time.   When the sun rises on Yule, you can bid them farewell until next Samhain.

We have a lot to think about right now, what with the hurricane affecting so much of the U.S., the upcoming elections, wars on women, science, common sense, and so on.  It is very important, then, to continue focusing on what gives us strength, on our personal light. 

As we look forward to the rebirth of the sun, we can also work on the rebirth of ourselves.  I am working on that through my “fast”, and hopefully more meditation and Tarot practice.  These are things I’ve been wanting to work on for a while.  This is my cocoon phase, and I’m a little apprehensive about it.  Still, I hope that the solstice sun will shine upon my new wings.

Blessed Samhain.  Hail the ancestors. Happy Halloween.  Trick or treat, smell my feet, give me something good to eat!   

Monday, October 29, 2012

No way, November!

I think it was last year when I thought I would work on my book projects for NaNoWriMo.   This year...uffffff!  Too tired to even think about it.   I've been feeling seriously wiped out for the last week or so.  Even the thought of making the meal I had planned for Samhain exhausts me and makes me start to yawn.

I haven't abandoned by hopes of finishing these projects, but I just don't have the time to devote to it, except maybe on weekends.  I lack the discipline to write an actual novel, as I found out a long time ago.  I'm better at novellas and recipes.

However, since some of my friends (and probably some of the bloggers I follow) will be engaging in some writing, some of the creative energy might transfer to my weary mind.  We shall see.

November is going to be a busy month.  This week, just as the month is beginning, I will be working on midterm grades and writing a final exam for later in the month. We also have Int'l Education Week.  After that, we will have a lovely week off for the Thanksgiving holiday.  I am soooooo looking forward to that week!  We're talking counting the days.

Still, I have a few recipes and ideas in mind and I will update when I can.  I am currently procrastinating right now.  Drinking coffee and updating my blog are much more exciting activities than grading essays, but I suppose I should get back to it.

Happy Monday.  I guess. :D

Friday, October 26, 2012

Trick or Treat, Smell my feet!

How I wish I had this window in my home!  Thanks to my Aussie, it looks as though I do! :)   Practicing my sugar skull makeup for Halloween.

Thursday, October 25, 2012


My plans for Samhain Eve and Samhain were dashed.  I'm still pretty bummed.  I don't know if I'll even bother making the dinner I had originally planned. I'd like to, and the spirit guests deserve it.  I guess it will just depend on how I feel after work.

As Nov. 1 approaches, so does my fast til the new year, at Yule.  I'm starting to doubt myself. Can I do this?  Will I be any good at the other things I set out to do?  I'm have some serious anxiety.  I guess I just have the pre-Samhain jitters.

Friday, October 19, 2012

December's Meatless Menus

Notice that I only planned up til Yule.  I'll be posting my Yule menu later.  It's going to involve something rather traditional for that time of year.



1Corn waffles with savory pinto beans
Maple-chili glazed butternut squash
2 Stuffed cabbage
Poppyseed noodles
3 White bean chili
4 Jerk tofu
Black beans and rice
5 Linguine frittata
White bean salad
6 Cheese fondue
Steamed vegetables
7 Mushroom and lentil pot pie
Mashed potatoes
Glazed carrots
8 Pizza with pesto, ricotta, and mixed mushrooms
9 Quesadillas with black beans and pineapple
Spanish rice
Chips and guacamole
10 Stuffed mushrooms
Broccoli-rice casserole
11 Lentil-rice loaf *
Mashed potatoes with mushroom gravy
Green beans with smoked almonds
12 Potato pierogi with fried onions
Glazed carrots
Spinach-red onion salad
13 Mushroom-cheese stuffed shells
Garlic bread
Lemon-garlic broccoli
14 Spicy black bean soup
15 Potato-chard gratin
White bean salad
Garlic bread
16  Veggie-cheese enchiladas
Corn with bell peppers
Chopped salad
17 Aloo tikki
Saag tofu
18 Baked falafel patties
Seasoned oven chips
Spinach salad
19 Taco salad in tortilla bowls

20Mushroom-rice casserole
Mixed veggies with cheese sauce
Garlic bread
22 MEAT! J

*Easy favorites are occasionally repeated J

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

November's Meatless Menu Plan


Pierogi with fried onions
Sautéed cabbage with walnuts
Glazed carrots

Vegetarian tacos

Spanish rice
Butternut squash lasagna

Persephone’s salad
Tortilla Espanola

Wilted greens

Lentil-rice loaf
Mashed potatoes
Green beans with smoked almonds
Black bean tofu
Sesame broccoli
Mushroom stroganoff
Buttered noodles
Glazed carrots
Aloo tikki

Chickpea curry

Falafel burgers

Oven chips

Tuscan white bean soup

Olive-onion foccacia
Vegetable pot-pie

Green beans
Cream of tomato soup
Welsh rarebit soufflé
Spinach salad
Vegetarian chili

Mushroom frittata with chard stems

White beans with chard
Taco salad (leftover chili)
Saag tofu



Black bean burgers
Chips with salsa and guacamole
“Sausage” patties
Home fries

Pinto beans and rice

Black bean soup


Mushroom-and-cheese stuffed shells
Garlic bread
Green beans
Stuffed acorn squash
Green bean casserole
Mashed potatoes and gravy
Cranberry sauce
Leftover black bean soup

Thin-crust pizzas
Vegetable tart with goat cheese
Glazed beets
Stuffed Portobello caps
Broccoli-rice casserole
Taco salad with veggie chili

Red lentil-chickpea burgers
Seasoned oven chips
Mixed vegetables
Lentil-rice loaf
Mashed potatoes and mushroom gravy
Glazed carrots
Scrambled tofu
Roasted potatoes

Yes, I am a huge dork.  No, I am not this organized in any other aspect of my life.  *L*   

This is subject to change, but I will be posting recipes for the dishes on the day I make them, if not the day before.  

If you're up for the meatless fast til Yule, why not join in on "Cook Along with Nar"?   

Monday, October 15, 2012

Persephone's Salad

Persephone’s Salad
8 cups mixed salad greens (whatever is in season and looks good)
1 Granny Smith apple, cored and thinly sliced
½ red onion, thinly sliced
2/3 cup candied walnut pieces (recipe follows)
Seeds of 1 pomegranate (about ½ cup)

For the dressing, combine:
2 tablespoons pomegranate molasses
1 tablespoon honey
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
¼ cup olive oil

Mix first three ingredients together. Whisk in olive oil slowly. Season with salt and pepper. 
Toss the dressing with the greens, onion, apple, and nuts. Toss well to combine. Top salad with pomegranate seeds and serve. 

Candied Walnuts

2 cups walnut halves or pieces
2 egg whites
½ cup brown sugar

In a bowl, lightly whisk the egg whites. Toss the walnuts to coat. Sprinkle on the brown sugar. Mix well with your hands until the nuts are all evenly coated. Spread the nuts onto a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake in a 300-degree oven for 30 minutes, stirring once or twice. 

The recipes for the rest of the meal can be found here:  http://witchininthekitchen.blogspot.com/2011/10/mute-supper.html

Sunday, October 14, 2012

It's beginning to look a lot like Samhain

Well, not here, really.  The stores are virtually devoid of decorations.  Christmas has already taken over.  There is one store in the mall, but I haven't been to it yet.  It was rather disappointing last year.

I finally figured out my Samhain menu.   I am working on getting the recipes together.   Samhain (November 1) will be my last night of meat until Yule.  I wanted to make something tasty, but as this is taking place on a week night, it needs to be simple.

I plan to serve:

Roasted chicken
Wild mushroom stuffing
Mashed sweet potatoes
Persephone's Salad
Harvest Home Rolls
Kabak Tatlisi (Turkish pumpkin dessert)

I need to work on my Empress Cake recipe as well.  Yes, two desserts.  One is seasonal, and one is mostly for our otherworldly visitors.

The bread will take a while to rise, but I don't actually have to do anything while that's happening. I just have to let it hang out in a warm spot.  The same with the chicken.  It will roast while I sit on my butt.

I have invited a friend to dine and if he accepts, I will explain to him what we're doing.  This won't be a mute supper, but I will set a place at the table to honor our ancestors.

I also have plans to set a special place for someone else who is important to me.  I'm gathering my supplies for that now.

So, what are you making for Samhain?  Are you doing anything like a mute supper?  What are you offering your ancestors?  

Monday, October 8, 2012

Not all my crafts are edible...

I went a little bit crazy making skulls and devils for El Dia de los Muertos...

It all went to pot when I found that damned packet of googly eyes. I blame the googly eyes!

Happy Canadian Thanksgiving!

To all of my Canadian friends and readers, I wish you a very happy holiday.  Enjoy the long weekend :)

Monday, October 1, 2012

October Feasting

Since part of my path involves eating as seasonally as possible (and as locally as possible, whenever I can), I thought we would explore some of the produce that's in season in the month of October.

Some of the fruits and veggies on this list I have explored in the past, but there's always room for more information and more recipes, right?

Here is a look at some of nature's offerings in the month of October:

* apples
* broccoli
* cabbage
* cranberries
* mushrooms
* pomegranates
* potatoes
* pumpkins
* sweet potatoes
* turnips
* winter squash

The Countdown to Samhain Begins

Rocktober is finally here!  

Ah, October. I think this is my favorite month.  It's not my birthday month, but it does hold my favorite day of the year, and that of many people.  Oh, yeah, Halloween/Samhain is on its way!  

While I cannot promise to blog every day, I do intend to set aside some time each day to reflect upon what this season means to me and what I hope to get out of it and why.

 I may light a candle and just sit quietly and meditate upon the season of the witch and how it affects me.  I may ask the Aussie to get out his drums and I might dance my way to Samhain, who knows!  I may even get around to making some videos.  I'll *definitely* be cooking!

If you remember, I plan to start a "fast" of sorts at Samhain.  I guess I'll be preparing for that by eating as much bacon as I can stuff into my gob (and then not live to see Samhain).  I will be working on some recipes for that time as well.  Lots of blog posts have been planned.  We'll just have to see what my other life (the job 'n' stuff) has in store for me.

Happy October, and remember: only 30 days left!