Thursday, January 28, 2021

Honey & Lavender Imbolc Posset Ritual

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At Imbolc, we celebrate the slow return of the Sun and Spring. It marks the mid-way point between the Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox and is deeply associated with the lambing season, which is where the name Imbolc may originate. Depending on the source, Imbolc may be from the Old Irish for "in the belly" which refers to the pregnancy of ewes and as such the production of milk, from Old Irish imb-fholc which means "to wash or cleanse oneself," or from the folk oimelc meaning "ewe milk." No matter the actual etymology of the word, Imbolc is known as both a celebration of lambing season and milk and ritual cleansing. This honey and lavender posset combines both of these celebrations into one delightful dessert recipe.

What You'll Need

  • 4 cups heavy or regular whipping cream (I am using Silk Heavy Cream to make this vegan which did not sit up very well)
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/3 cup lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon lavender + 1 teaspoon for garnish

What to Do

Bring the cream and honey to a boil over medium heat. Stir continuously for 3 full minutes in a clockwise direction. As you stir, visualize the milk and honey mixture filling with purifying golden light while chanting, 

"With golden honey, shining like the Sun,
This spell of cleansing and celebration is begun.
Milk so white and pure,
Cleanse my soul so I am no longer unsure.
Bring me serenity and clarity,
Your warmth soothing all insecurities.
Honey and milk combine,
To honor the union of the divine.
May the Sun return and heat the Earth,
And from His rays, we shall witness rebirth."

Remove from the heat and add the lemon and lime juice. Stir to combine. Place the 1 tablespoon of lavender into a tea ball and submerge it in the mixture. Stir clockwise while saying,

"With citrus and lavender purple,
Awaken dear Sun so life may come full circle."

Allow the lavender to steep for between 10 and 20 minutes string occasionally. The longer the lavender is allowed to steep, the stronger the flavor. When it's time, remove the tea ball of lavender and pour the mixture into small ramekins or custard dishes. Top with the remaining lavender and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Chill for at least 2 hours in the fridge or in the freezer for 30-40 minutes until it sets. When it's ready, enjoy by yourself or with friends. Remember to leave some for the Earth and genius loci as an offering.

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Why You Did It

Understanding the why's of a ritual are just as important as performing it. It helps you understand the process so you can modify the spell or ritual to suit your needs and helps guide you to write your own.

For this spell, we only used a couple of simple ingredients to make a fantastic cleansing dessert in honor of the season. First, honey, being golden in color, is associated with masculine solar energies and warmth. By combining with milk, traditionally associated with Earth and feminine energies, we are creating a union between two heavenly bodies or divine beings, depending on your beliefs, to represent rebirth and renewal. Both rebirth, renewal, milk, and honey are central themes and feast foods of Imbolc. Furthermore, milk and honey are known for their healing properties. Honey is naturally antibacterial and aids in treating bacterial infections. Milk, vegan or otherwise, is full of vital nutrients that help stave off infections and prevent brittle bones. Together they help cleanse the body and prevent illness as well as boosts your stamina, which is needed after a long rest, and reduces insomnia.

Lemon, like milk and honey, is also antimicrobial thus increasing the healing and cleansing properties of the dessert. The bright yellow color is also associated with the Sun, adding additional solar energies to the spell as a way to encourage the Sun's return through sympathetic magic. Furthermore, lemon is associated with purification and rejuvenation, making it the perfect addition to an Imbolc spell. The lime, being green, is representative of Earth, which is just beginning to wake during Imbolc, hence the lesser amount. 

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Finally, we have lavender. Lavender is the culmination of the fruits of the Sun and Earth's labors, the rebirth of life. While it's not the first flower to bloom in the Spring, it does bloom earlier than many, dotting the landscape with beautiful purple hues. Lavender is also associated with love, being used by prostitutes to attract customers or by young women to attract a future husband. Because Imbolc is lambing season and the beginning of the union between Sun and Earth, it seems only fitting to use lavender in this spell to represent the love that creates new life.

Wish to break this spell? There is nothing to break in this spell, so just leave it be. You can always throw the posset out instead of eating it if you decide you don't want to cleanse yourself and celebrate the season.

Remember to record this ritual on your ritual/spell worksheet and have a wonderful Imbolc! How do you plan to celebrate this year?

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  1. I consider myself a fairly accomplished cook and baker, and had never heard of a posset before. Super intrigued to try this recipe.

    1. Its an old and very basic version of a custard, just cream and sugar with flavoring. Mine did not set up right because of the vegan heavy cream I used, but I've made a similar recipe to this one with real milk and it works wonderfully.

  2. Beautiful recipe. Possets are a charming (and very delicious) way to bring a taste of the past into 21st century cookery and magick alike. Thank you very much for sharing this wonderful Imbolc version.

    May you have a bright, meaningful, and deeply blessed sabbat!
    Autumn Zenith 🧡 Witchcrafted Life

    1. You too, Autumn! I think about you and your husband often. I am so jealous of all the snow you have been receiving!

  3. hi can you add cinnamon to the list? thanks

    1. I'll add it to my ever growing list. There are several request ahead of yours at the moment.


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