Lughnasadh Recipes

Brigid’s Blackberry Pie
4 cups of fresh blackberries (thawed frozen berries are ok)
11/2 cups sugar
1/3 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon of salt
1 unbaked pie crust

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line a deep pie dish with the pie crust or purchase a commercially-made one. Set aside. Mix all other ingredients together in a large mixing bowl. If it appears too “wet,” mix in a little more flour (about 2 tablespoons). Turn the fruit into the pie shell and dot with butter or margarine. You can bake the pie as is, or cover it with another pie crust. Then score the top several times with a sharp knife. Bake for 1 hour, or until the top crust is a golden brown. Taken from Edain McCoy’s book “The Sabbats- A New Approach to Living the Old Ways”

1/2 cup butter
3 tablespoons molasses
1 cup milk
4 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
3 teaspoons ground allspice
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup raisins
Preheat oven to 350 F. Melt butter, add molasses and milk, and cool. Sift together flour, sugar, allspice, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir raisins and mix well. Pour into buttered pan, 13X9X2, baking for 30 minutes.

Perfect Corn Bread
1 cup sifted all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup yellow corn meal
2 eggs
1 cup milk
1/4 cup shortening
Sift flour with sugar, baking powder, and salt; stir in cornmeal. Add eggs, milk, and shortening. Beat with rotary or electric beater till just smooth. (Do not overbeat.) Pour into greased 9x9x2 inch pan. Bake at 425 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes. Corn Sticks: Spoon batter into greased corn-stick pans, filling 2/3 full. Bake in hot oven (425) 12 to 15 minutes. Makes 18.

Cawl Cynhaeaf – Harvest Broth
2 1/2lbs. Welsh neck of lamb (or 2 1/2lbs of cubed lamb)
1/2lb peas
1/2lb broad beans
1 medium carrot
1 onion
1 small turnip
1 small cauliflower
5 sprigs of parsley
1 qt. water
salt and pepper

Remove as much fat as possible from the meat. Place the meat in a large saucepan and cover with the water.Bring to the boil and skim any fat from the surface of the liquid. Shell the peas and beans. Peel and dice the carrot, onion and turnip. Add the vegetables, except the cauliflower, to the meat. Season. Cover the saucepan and simmer slowly for 3 hours. 30 minutes before serving the broth, cut the cauliflower into sprigs and add to the saucepan. Serve hot decorated with sprigs of parsley. From: Country Cookery – Recipes from Wales by Sian Llewellyn.


Lughnasadh Ritual

In our modern world it is easy to forget how important a successful harvest was to our ancestors. They had cause for celebration: A good harvest meant survival in the dark, cold months ahead. A poor or bad harvest signaled the beginning of difficult times. Even though we can nip out to the supermarket whenever we need something, this is a good time to give thought to where our food originates and reverence for the cycles that produce it. Better still, tending a garden keeps us in touch with the Goddess and her bounty. Even if your garden consists only of tomatoes or herbs grown in pots on a balcony, these taste all the sweeter for having been nurtured by your own hands.

Tonight’s circle is created to give thanks for what the Lord and Lady provide. The late summer harvest is a time of transformation; a time to take stock of how the year has unfolded thus far, what you have done, and what you are ready to reap. The fruits of the seeds planted in the spring (physical and spiritual) are ready to be gathered in.

Items needed for this ritual include: Six pieces of fruit, vegetables or a combination placed in a basket near the altar; Chalice; A wand or athame can be used to cast the circle; Honey mead or other honeyed drink such as chamomile tea; Cornbread on a plate; A small cup filled with grapes.

The Ritual
With your athame or wand, walk the perimeter of your circle saying:
A circle is a symbol of completeness and continuity. It is the Wheel of the Year; the cycle of life. Now is high summer. The days are hot and the nights sultry. The first harvest is taken in and I rejoice in the bounty that is provided.

When you arrive back where you started, say:
With this circle sacred space has been created where the realms touch.

Take a piece of fruit or vegetable from the basket. Before speaking, walk to the edge of the circle and raise it in both hands. For the Lord and Lady, make evocations standing in front of the altar. After speaking, place the fruit/vegetable on the altar.

Come ye spirits of North, powers of Earth, bring the beauty of ripe, golden fields. Be with me this night.

Come ye spirits of East, powers of Air, bring the cool morning breeze. Be with me this night.

Come ye spirits of South, powers of Fire, bring the hot, sultry summer afternoons. Be with me this night.

Come ye spirits of West, powers of Water, bring the warm rains that nourish the fields. Be with me this night.

Lord Lugh, Lord of the Harvest, the bounty of your seed ripens in the fields and orchards. Be with me this night.

Lady Gaia, Mother of All, your great swollen belly provides abundance. Nourish me, protect me. Be with me this night.

At the altar, take up the chalice and the athame. Slowly lower the athame into the raised chalice to symbolize the Great Rite, saying:
This is Lughnasadh, the time of Lugh. This is the time of the first harvest. I celebrate the bounty of Gaia and Lugh.

Fill the chalice with honey mead. Before taking a bite of cornbread and a sip of mead say, respectively:
I share the bounty of the Lord. I share the bounty of the Lady.

Think of what began earlier in the year, has grown, and is ready to come to fruition in your life. Take the cup of grapes and hold it between your hands. Think of what you want to reap in this time of harvest. When you have it firmly in your mind, eat one of the grapes, and then place one on the altar as an offering. After you have done that, you may want to move about your circle and voice what you wish for others. If you know someone is having difficulty, wish that it is resolved. You may also want to send loving energy to the earth and out into the world.

To add energy to your wishes, drum, dance and chant:
With my circle I send a gift to you,
May the Goddess grant your wishes true.

When the energy has reached its peak slow the chanting, bring it to a halt, and then say:
May my wishes and intentions be carried above and below.

Use your usual method for grounding and centering or playback a tape of the one in the group ritual.

Face each direction respectively from that point in your circle. Stand in front of the altar for the Lord and Lady.

Lady Gaia, thank you for your blessing and presence in my circle this night. Stay if you will; go if you must. I bid thee farewell.

Lord Lugh, Lord of the Harvest, thank you for your blessing and presence in my circle this night. Stay if you will; go if you must. I bid thee farewell.

Spirits of West, powers of Water, thank you for your blessing and presence in my circle this night. Stay if you will; go if you must. I bid thee farewell.

Spirits of South, powers of Fire, thank you for your blessing and presence in my circle this night. Stay if you will; go if you must. I bid thee farewell.

Spirits of East, powers of Air, thank you for your blessing and presence in my circle this night. Stay if you will; go if you must. I bid thee farewell.

Spirits of North, powers of Earth, thank you for your blessing and presence in my circle this night. Stay if you will; go if you must. I bid thee farewell.

As all good things must sometimes end,
Go forth with the love the Goddess sends.
For if your heart is always true,
This circle will come back to you.

Lughnasadh Activities & Ideas

  • If you have a spring or well in your area, bless it and decorate it with flowers
  • Harvest the first crops of your garden and dedicate them to the Gods. If you don’t have a garden, take a trip to a farmer’s market or grocery store and purchase some fruit and vegetables.
  • Bake some bread
  • Float flowers at a local creek or pond
  • Take a nature walk and collect goodies for your altar
  • Sacrifice bad habits and unwanted things from your life by throwing symbols of them into the Sabbat fire.
  • Hold your own “Tailltean Games” (the Irish contests in honor of Lugh or His foster-mother Tailte), by competing in athletic games, poetry reading, and any other contest that would be fun.
  • Baking and sharing a special “Lammas-loaf” with family and coveners using whatever grains are native to your area.
  • Make a god-figure which is whole ears of corn wired together with sticks, and covered with gold foil. During the ritual this sun god image is cast into the fire – later to emerge transformed into the corn god. Eat Him along with other ears of corn which have been roasting around the fire’s edge and, of course, other potluck goodies. Thus the power of the sunlight is transformed into the harvest which sustains us and we give thanks for His willing sacrifice by feasting on corn and wine.
  • Do Magic to help you finish long-standing projects by the fall.
  • Ritually sacrifice negative emotions, outworn habits, etc. by “transferring” them into a small bread “person” you have baked, and then throwing it, either whole or in pieces, into the ritual fire.
  • Bless your garden, where Lugh’s vitality has transformed into the sustenance of ripe vegetables, fruits, and grains.
  • Take time to actually harvest fruits from your garden with your family. If you don’t have a garden, visit one of the pick-your-own farms in your area.
  • Include bilberries or blueberries in your feast; these were a traditional fruit, whose abundance was seen as an indicator of the harvest to come.
  • Gather the tools of your trade and bless them in order to bring a richer harvest next year.
  • Share your harvest with others who are less fortunate.
  • Decorate with sickles, scythes, fresh vegetables & fruits, grains, berries, corn dollies, bread..
  • Save and plant the seeds from the fruits consumed during the feast or ritual. If they sprout, grow the plant or tree with love and as a symbol of your connection with the Lord and Lady.
  • Walk through the fields and orchards or spend time along springs, creeks, rivers, ponds and lakes reflecting on the bounty and love of the Lord and Lady
  • Play a game such as rhibo (a Welsh game) which is traditionally played at Lammas. Three pairs to people face each other and hold hands. A person is then laid across the hands and tossed into the air much like how grain is winnowed. For little ones use a blanet with two adults holding the corners. Be sure to be careful not to “toss” anyone too high!!!

Lughnasadh Correspondences

Activities and Rituals: bread being eaten and thrown into the fire, grains woven into god/dess symbols, onion braiding and works for harvesting of goals and ideas, bringing to bear concepts and ideas, meditation on the sun God, games, activities of all sorts, the time of reaping what one has sown

Incense: Aloes, Rose, Sandalwood, frankincense

Tools: Athame

Stones/Gems: Carnelian, Citrine, Amber, Tourmaline

Colors: red, orange, gold, yellow, brown, bronze

Symbols & Decorations: threshing tools, corn dollies, flowers, wheat stalks, the scythe, yellow candles, corn, sheaves of grain

Foods: All grains, Breads, cheeses, Cider, fruits, vegetables, herbs, Pies, corn, early apples, Berries, jellies, Herbal “sun”teas

Deities: Lugh, the Sun God, Sovereignty, Rhiannon and Epona, Tailte, Tammuz, Demeter, Persephone, Cerridwen, Faunus, Baal and Crom Dubh

Herbs and Flowers: Heather, hollyhock