Imbolc is fast approaching and again, the question is what can I do to celebrate when I can’t meet with others, and it looks like it may be too cold and slippy to leave the house.
I’ve been looking back at some of the things I have done in the past and I’ve found something I will definitely be trying again. You may have gathered by now that I like to make things as part of any ritual or celebration. So I will be making butter to spread on freshly made Bride’s Bannocks. These are a type of flatbread, that can be baked in the oven or cooked on the stove top in a frying pan.
Brigid, also known as Bride, is the Goddess of healing, poetry and smithcraft, of fire and fertility.1 A tradition associated with her is the making of Bridey dolls.2 Girls would carry these from house to house and in return would be given Bride’s Bannocks.
Bannock cake recipe3
- 450g flour
- 360ml of water
- 2 tablespoons of baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 60g butter
- 150g raisins
- olive oil for cooking
- flour for dusting
- Put flour, baking powder, salt and butter in a bowl. Mix, slowly adding water until you have a dough. Add the raisins, and mix them into the dough. Knead for approximately 10 minutes.
- Divide the dough and roll into balls. Press into circles about 1 cm thick. Lightly dust both sides with flour.
- Add olive oil to the frying pan. When hot, add dough circles. When a crust has formed on the bottom, turn them over. Cook for 12 to 15 minutes. Enjoy.
I made my butter from Gold Top milk, the one where you can see the cream at the top of the bottle. Carefully pour off the cream, avoiding the more watery milk underneath. Put the cream in a small jar, secure the lid, and then shake. And shake. And shake. Eventually the cream will split into solids and watery milk. The solid part is your butter.
There are other things you could try if you don’t fancy cooking but want to do something hands-on. Make a Bridey Doll or a Brigid Cross.4 You may well not have straw to hand but you can be inventive with what you do have around the home. It doesn’t matter how beautiful the finished article is. What is important is the intention that you put into it. Make the activity part of your celebration of this time of the year.
Written by Portland Jones, PF Disabilities Liaison for West Midlands
The links that I have given I have found via Google. I can make no assurances for the content.