“All sorrows are less with bread. ”
― Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra
#KitchenWitchWednesday couldn’t continue without my sharing my bread recipe – according to my husband. I mentioned it briefly is my last post on sourdough, though this isn’t a sourdough recipe (its the one I came up with when I needed to relieve my frustration at my sourdough starter not starting right).
For me there is nothing more comforting, nothing more hygge, and nothing more witchy than baking bread and eating it with people I love. Its aromatherapy with that yeasty, warm smell emanating from the kitchen and filling the house. Its sweet and filling and pairs well with almost anything yet stands alone just fine. I could go all day on the glories of bread – to the chagrin of my gluten-free friends.
My Bread Recipe (aka the good accident)
My recipe is almost completely based on this Amish Sweet Bread recipe, so I don’t really know if I should call it mine. However, there is one difference – I don’t use as much yeast. I miss-read the recipe when I first made it. I was agitated while baking and this happens if you bake for stress relief. I read tablespoons as teaspoons and used less than half what the recipe called for.
The result – my family loves it! In fact, my father-in-law (who was a cook in the military for generals and has eaten at more 5-star restaurants than I can name) told me that it was up there with the best bread he’s ever eaten. We ate two loves among 6 people in one evening. As they finished the last slices with sweet butter and raw honey, they asked what time I was getting up in the morning to bake more! Haha!
“After breakfast, Kat would go around to the neighbors with her mother, carrying a basket of bread. During the week, they’d make inquiries to see who needed their help. They baked yarrow bread for those with broken hearts, sorrel bread for neglected children, stephanotis bread for couples who were fighting, pear blossom bread for anyone grieving, laurel bread for those needing financial help, and a simple sage bread for everyone else.”
― Menna van Praag, The Witches of Cambridge
Bread is an important part of so many cultures and therefore it isn’t a surprise to find it has made its way into magickal practice. Witches and priest/esses and wise people have related bread to nourishment, healing, prosperity, and fertility. Having bread means living another day without hunger. It means having the ingredients, the technology, and the wisdom to create. This is magickal practice at its basest nature – creation to continue creation.
On a practical level – bread is an excellent base for spell work. Like a potion, you can add ingredients to bread to ingest for their magickal properties. You can also give bread as an offering, shape it as a poppet, or use it in place of something else symbolically. You can carve runes, sigils, or words into bread. You can work the dough like clay and form all sorts of things out of it. It is essentially a perfect tool for a witch that wants to get their hands dirty.
Bless My Bread
“The dwarf bread was brought out for inspection. But it was miraculous, the dwarf bread. No one ever went hungry when they had some dwarf bread to avoid. You only had to look at it for a moment, and instantly you could think of dozens of things you’d rather eat. Your boots, for example. Mountains. Raw sheep. Your own foot.”
― Terry Pratchett, Witches Abroad
My hope is to never make terrible bread. I’ve made terrible brownies before…but that’s a story for another day. For now, may my bread always be blessed and nourish my family and I. I do most of my prayer when baking and this bread recipe has witnessed a lot of Pagan prayer since I discovered it.
Invocation to Fulla from the Pagan Book of Hours
Beer and Bread Blessing for Frith by Joshua Tenpenny