Easy Mabon Feast

The wheel is turning again. Mabon has arrived. The days are getting shorter and the weather is cooler. It’s the perfect time for a harvest feast. Here are a few of my favorite easy Mabon recipes. Enjoy!

Butternut Squash Soup

  • 1 large squash, cubed
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
  • 7 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • Fresh thyme (optional) for garnish

Combine all ingredients except cream in large soup pot. Bring to boil. Cover and simmer for 35 minutes. Using an immersion blender, puree the soup until silky smooth. Add the heavy cream and bring to a simmer. Ladle into soup bowls and garnish with thyme if desired. 

Harvest Pot Roast

  • 6 slices beef bacon
  • 3 pounds cubed root vegetables of choice
  • Salt and pepper
  • Dried rosemary to taste
  • 3 pound venison roast
  • 1 ½ cups beef broth
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste

Place bacon slices in bottom of slow cooker. Mix root vegetables over bacon. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and rosemary. Place venison on top of vegetables. Add remaining rosemary. Combine beef broth and tomato paste and pour over roast. Cover and cook on low for 9 hours. 

Apple Crisp

  • 10 cups apples, peeled, cored, and sliced
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 tablespoon and 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 cup quick-cook oats
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ cup butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place the apples in a 9×13 baking dish. Mix the sugar, 1 tablespoon flour, and cinnamon. Sprinkle over apples. Pour water over apples. Combine remaining ingredients. Crumble evenly over apple mixture. Bake for 45 minutes. 

 

Lammas Traditions

This past week on August 1, we celebrated Lammas or Lughnasadh (luna-sa), the first of several harvest festivals. Although I am Jewish, I come from Scottish heritage, so I do observe Gaelic/Celtic holidays such as this one. There are many ways to celebrate Lughnasadh, as well as many myths and legends that surround it. Like everything else, I pick and choose what I do in my celebrations surrounding the wheel of the year. 

 

As Lughnasadh is a harvest festival, my celebration mainly surrounds the foods that I eat. My Lammas meal is pretty simple. I make sure to eat from the Native American Three Sisters (corn, beans, and squash) as well as a loaf of bread- namely Challah. This Jewish braided bread traditionally was just bread and the word challah referred to the pinch of dough that was offered to the Queen of Heaven in the fire. You would literally pinch off a piece of dough and burn it in the fire as an offering to Asherah. However, the term challah has come to mean the loaf itself. I generally don’t make my own challah (although on occasion I do), so at Lughnasadh I make sure to take a pinch of the already baked bread and save it to burn on my altar for the Queen of Heaven. Then, I eat the remainder of the Challah with the Three Sisters.

My Lammas meal is the majority of my observance of this holiday. I also like to have a corn dolly on my altar from now until Mabon. That’s about it, though. I’m rather simple in my observances and that works for me. What are your favorite ways to observe Lughnasadh? 

~Chaya Levana