Happy Imbolc to you all.
I'd love to share this Imbolc card with you made by the very talented Wendy Andrew - if you're not familiar with her work check out her website www.paintingdreams.co.uk
Will you be preparing a special meal for this evening's festivities? Here are some snippets regarding Imbolc which will be in my book Festivals and Feasts.
Imbolc has a few translations = some say it means "in the belly" as spring returns and the lambs are born. Others say it translates as "ewe's milk" but it is generally recognised that milk and dairy products are popular for feasting at this time of year. As the colour associated with Imbolc is white or pale pinks and greens, I also attribute white foods to my festival feasting. Spring greens are the perfect veg to accompany your feasts.
My menu for this evening will be:
Lemon Sole fillets stuffed with Smoked Trout served
with a leek and watercress sauce
Panna Cotta with blackberries (in my freezer from the autumn)
This is a very quick and nutritious meal to make - I use smoked trout as my husband is a fisherman and we have so much trout I never know what to do with it - but you could also
use smoked salmon. Lay a piece of smoked fish on top of a Lemon Sole or Plaice fillet and roll
gently. Use 2 pieces of sole per person for a main meal. Add some butter to a pan and melt with a little sunflower oil and add the sole to the pan together with a small drop of white wine. Leave to cook gently for about 5 minutes. Don't overcook the fish or it will become dry. Trust me, I know!
In the meantime make your sauce. Gently fry some onions and finely chopped leek in some butter and oil (you can omit the butter if you're thinking of your waistline) until soft - try not to colour them too much. Add the watercress or other green veg such as kale, spinach. You can then blitz the mixture until smooth. Add the cooking liquor from the fish and a drop of cream or creme fraiche. In larger portions this can also make a wonderful soup! Adjust seasoning to taste but be careful with the salt because of the salty smoked fish.
Serve your fish and sauce with some finely chopped spring greens. Enjoy!
Other food ideas include all dairy products, onions, chives, seeds, herbal tea, lamb, breads, spiced wine, soups, spring greens.
Herbs for this festival are Angelica, Basil, Bay, Blackberries.
Imbolc Celebration Ideas
Imbolc is the original time of the Spring Clean, both physically and mentally. Clean the house from top to bottom - get that besom out and whistle while you work! Open the windows and let the fresh air in. This is also the time when any old yule greenery would be burned. Use sage and lavender in boiling water to clean your house. Use vinegar and mugwort for windows and mirrors. Burn sage to cleanse the energies.
Burn candles or tealights as you go through the house to bring back the light of the spring. Please be careful burning your candles, I have suffered as a result of a burning candle in the past and its not pleasant.
Tie a small bundle of straw together with black ribbon - name each bundle for something you want to remove in your life and then burn it safely in your cauldron.
Spell work for Imbolc include the blessings of seeds for the forthcoming harvest. It is also a good time to clean and consecrate your agricultural tools, clean out that potting shed, get your pots ready for the bountiful veg and herbs and flowers you are going to produce this year.
Crystals associated with Imbolc are rose quartz, clear quartz, amethyst, citrine.
I wish you a Happy Imbolc.