Litha (Jun 20-23)
Food and drink of Litha: Garden fresh fruits and vegetables, ale, bread, pumpernickel, cheese, edible flowers, lemons, mead and wines, milk, oranges, and summer squash
Gayle’s Lemony Thyme Scones
"Gayle Giroux-Trescott, the owner of the Crescent Roll Bakery, is Witchtown’s resident baker. She is known for selling the best (as well as the only) pizza in town, and for her delicious seasonal pastries. These herby scones with a hint of lemon are always in demand around the Summer Solstice." (As quoted from Cory Putnam Oakes' website. These wonderful scones are featured in her new book Witchtown which comes out Halloween of 2017. Check it out!)
1 tablespoon dried thyme
2 cups all purpose flour
1/4 cup light brown sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces and chilled
2/3 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons white sugar
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly flour a baking sheet.
Zest the lemon and set 1 tsp of zest aside. Cut the lemon in half and squeeze out the juice until you have about 1 tablespoon.
To bring out the flavor of the thyme, crush it up a bit using a mortar and pestle (or in a bowl using the back of a spoon). Whisk together the thyme, lemon zest, flour, brown sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Cut the butter into the mixture using a pastry blender or by rubbing it in with your fingertips until only tiny (smaller than a pea) lumps remain.
In a second bowl, whisk together two of the eggs, the sour cream, and the lemon juice. Stir the wet mixture into the dry mixture until just combined, then turn the whole thing out onto a floured surface. (The dough will be very sticky so use a lot of flour here.) Divide the dough in half and pat each half into a flat disk. Using a floured knife, cut each disk into six wedges (like a pizza). Transfer the wedges to the prepared baking sheet, spacing them at least an inch apart.
Separate the remaining egg. Reserve the yolk for another use and beat the egg white until it’s foamy. Brush the foam over the top of the scones and then sprinkle them with the white sugar.
Bake until the scones are golden on top, about 20 minutes. Serve them warm for maximum deliciousness.
(NOTE: Gayle’s scone recipe was adapted from Bon Appetit’s Cranberry-Studded Creme Fraiche Scones)
Broccoli soup in bread pots
Round sour dough bread loaves, halved
1/2 pound Broccoli, fresh
1/4 cup Onion, chopped
1/4 cup Margarine
1/2 cup Flour
3 cups Water
4 teaspoons Chicken Bouillon granules
2 cups Milk
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 cup Sharp Cheddar Cheese, shredded
Steam broccoli in small amount of salted water for 10 minutes or until crisp-tender; coarsely chop. In large saucepan, sauté onion in margarine until tender but not brown. Blend in flour. Add water, chicken bouillon, milk, and Worcestershire sauce. Cook and stir until mixture slightly thickens. Add chopped broccoli. Bring to boiling and stir in shredded cheese until melted. Serve soup in individual hollowed out bread loaf halves. Leftover soup freezes well.
1 1/4 cups warm water
1 envelope of yeast
2 Tbsp sugar
2 Tbsp softened oleo
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp dried leaf thyme
2 3/4 cups plain flour
Sprinkle yeast over water in a large warm bowl (I still use the good old Pyrex yellow); stir till dissolved. Add oleo, sugar, salt, thyme, and half of the flour. Beat on medium mixer speed 2 minutes or 150 strokes by hand; scrape bowl often. Beat in rest of the flour with a spoon till smooth. Scrape down sides. Cover; let rise till double, about 1 hour. Beat down with 25 strokes. Turn into greased bread tin or 1 1/2-qt casserole. Bake l hr 10 min at 175°C. Brush top of hot loaf with melted oleo (I just rub a stick over it).
Pasta with Fresh Tomatoes
1 Teaspoon chopped fresh cilantro
2 Servings Angel Hair Pasta
2 Teaspoons Minced Garlic
1/2 cup finely diced onion
1 Teaspoon Oregano
3 tomatoes, chopped
1 Teaspoon Basil
1 teaspoon salt
In a medium bowl, combine ingredients. Chill for one hour in the refrigerator before serving.
Sabbat Honey Cake
½ cup butter
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup honey
½ teaspoon salt
1 egg, well beaten
½ teaspoon cinnamon
2 cups of flour, sifted
½ cup buttermilk
1 cup powdered (10x) sugar
1 tablespoon of melted butter
1 ½ tablespoons of milk, slightly warmed
½ teaspoons of honey, warmed slightly
In a mixing bowl on medium speed, cream butter until light.
On low speed, mix in honey and beaten egg.
In a separate bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.
Add this dry mixture, alternating with some of the buttermilk, into the first bowl.
Blend everything together thoroughly then pour into a 9x13 baking pan that has been sprayed with non-stick spray.
Bake at 350 degrees for 45-55 minutes.
When done, allow cake to cool completely.
For frosting: blend powdered sugar, warm milk, melted butter and warm honey in a bowl. Spread over entire cooled cake.
Solstice Herb Bread
3 C. flour
1 tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. salt
1 pkg. dry active yeast
2 tbsp. chopped fresh chives
2 tsp. chopped fresh rosemary
1 tsp. fresh thyme
1 1/4 C. hot water
2 tbsp. Crisco
Mix 2 cups of the flour, sugar, salt and yeast in a large bowl. Add herbs, water, and Crisco. Beat slowly, stirring in remaining cup of flour until smooth. Scrape batter from sides of bowl and let rise in a warm place for 35 minutes or until it doubles in bulk. Punch down and beat with a spoon for about 15 seconds. Place dough in a greased loaf pan, patting down and forming a loaf shape with your hands. Cover and let rise again for about 30 minutes or until it again doubles in bulk. Bake at 375 for 40-45 minutes. Brush top with butter or margarine and remove from pan to cool.
Solstice Fruit Fizz
6 lemon balm leaves
A few cherries and strawberries, to serve
Cut the nectarines and cherries in half and remove the pits. Cut any leaves and stalks off the strawberries, and wash all fruit thoroughly. Push through a juicer, then top with sparkling water or lemonade, and pour into a jug. Add a few ice cubes, the lemon balm leaves, and extra fresh fruits.
Warm Glow Applesauce
8 med apples, cored, pared, and cubed
2 tbs. lemon juice
1/4 cup sugar
5 or 6 drops red food coloring
1/4 cup water
Put apples, sugar, water, lemon juice, and food coloring in blender; cover and blend until smooth. Heat in sauce pan on low to serve warm, or chill. Makes 4 1cup servings.
Cold Tomato Soup
2 large tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and chopped
1 sweet pepper, seeded and chopped
1 clove garlic, peeled and chopped
3/4 C. Herb blend, basil, chives, tarragon, parsley, dill, chervil, thyme
1/2 C. olive oil
3 tbsp. lemon juice
3 C. cold water
1 sweet Spanish onion, peeled and sliced
1 C. cucumber, peeled, seeded, and sliced
1/2 tsp. paprika
Put chopped tomatoes, pepper, garlic and herbs in a bowl. Stir in olive oil, lemon juice, and cold water. Add onion, cucumber, and paprika. Chill in refrigerator for about 5 hours. Serve over ice cubes in bowls and garnish with fresh parsley or watercress.