Newsletter for January, 1997 ce

GREETINGS

We are your friendly substitute editors. We (gypsy, Mike, and the eagle-eyed Stormbringer) decided to give Pam and Deb a couple of months off. Our aim is to make this an enjoyable and useful newsletter. Please let us know what you think. Stormbringer, our faithful proofreader, artist, and in-house critic, is full of ideas, but weíre sure there are countless suggestions none of us have come up with yet.

THANKS AND A TIP OF THE HAT

Many, many thanks to Dancing Goddess Coven for a truly wonderful Yule ritual/party. It was delightful, and the spontaneous rendition of "Happy Birthday" fit right in! The rebirth of the Sun was certainly celebrated with mirth and reverence.

JANUARY OPEN FULL MOON

The January Open Full Moon will be held on Friday, January 17, beginning at 7:30 PM, at the First Unitarian Church, 1400 Lafayette, in Denver.

Due to a scheduling foul-up (itís not my fault this time! -gypsy) Hearthstone will be presenting the January ritual. This ritual will represent the most common American Wiccan tradition: winging it. By this we mean we will be asking for volunteers for parts to be determined later. (For what itís worth, these ad-libbed rituals are some of the best, most energetic rituals you will ever experience.)

1997 OPEN FULL MOON DATES

February	21			August		15*
March		21			September	12*
April		18			October		10
May		16			November	 7*
June		13			December	12
July		18*
* Dates marked with an asterisk are available for anyone who might wish to officiate. Please contact gypsy at 680-5105 if you are interested.

Please be aware that we will no longer have access to the nursery. Due to a lack of adult volunteers, we have removed the child care area from our lease. (It seemed a fiscally wise move.)

KITCHEN WITCH DANCES THE MISIRLOU

So did they then, with hearts as one, greatly cheer each the otherís soul and spirit with many an embrace: their hearts had relief from their griefs while each took and gave back joyousness.

The bright-coiffed Hecate came near to them, and often did she embrace the daughter of holy Demeter: and from that time the lady Hecate was minister and companion to Persephone.

From the Hymn to Demeter by Homer

Mike was in Salt Lake City again, and this time he had a car and a free night. In his search for dinner, he visited three shopping malls, a big strip mine (sorry - open pit mine) and a Greek restaurant. Three months earlier, Joy and I had pursued the same quest by visiting the Great Salt Lake, a closed amusement park, and - a Greek restaurant. That makes two Greek restaurants in a major American city. Coincidence?

Probably. We like Greek food and frequently seek out Greek restaurants, as we rarely cook Greek at home. And thatís a shame, because Greek food is not all that difficult to make. Many people find the thought of preparing Greek food daunting. Open fires and vertical spits do seem a trifle dramatic for the average American kitchen. But it is possible to imitate Greek restaurant dining at home with very little effort.

Begin by making a mixture of olive oil, lemon juice, oregano, and crushed garlic. (Your own tastebuds will determine the quantities.) Use part of this mixture as the marinade for a tender cut of beef, pork, or lamb (loin, rib, round, etc. Vegetarians may substitute root vegetables, but tofu just wonít cut it here.). Use the rest of the mixture to dress a salad made with lettuce, onion, tomato wedges, black olives, and feta cheese. Grill or roast the meat (I donít do much outdoor grilling in the current wintry weather, but some people are hardier than I amľ) and slice it thinly. Serve with store bought pita bread (or make your own, something I havenít tried yet but plan to soon), barley pilaf made with a few chopped pine nuts, and the two sauces for which I have included recipes below. End the meal with store-bought baklava (I made this once and donít recommend the effort; itís a lot of work and the Greek bakeries in town do it so well, itís hardly worth trying) and espresso or your favorite after-dinner beverage. Begin the meal by reciting a portion of the "Hymn to Demeter" (okay, itís not a Greek restaurant standard, but I like it) and play some recordings of Greek folk music softly in the background. (If you can find a recording of 70s rock sung in Greek, so much the better ambiance-wise. Belly dancing, if you enjoy it, is another option.)

And, voila! You might as well be eating out. Except, of course, this way is cheaper, more work, and less time in the car. Unless you happen to be in Salt Lake City. (It really is a very nice city, by the way, with some really neat residents and an active Pagan community. I donít know why I keep picking on it. Maybe next month Iíll make fun of another city. I have a few things to say about Lake Tahoe, for instanceľ)

Both of these recipes fall into the "hurry-up-and-wait" category and the tsatziki can be made well in advance.

TSATZIKI (This recipe makes a lot)

4 C 	unflavored fresh yogurt
1 	medium cucumber, peeled, seeded & grated
4-6 	cloves garlic, peeled & grated
2 Tb 	olive oil
Ĺ tsp 	dried dillweed
Salt & pepper to taste

Strain the yogurt in a cheesecloth-lined colander (or a yogurt strainer, if you have one) in the refrigerator for several hours until thick. Drain cucumber in a colander (not the same one you used for the yogurt; you can do this in two stages if necessary) for a couple of hours. (This can all be done in the refrigerator.) Combine all ingredients in a bowl and chill well before serving. This will keep 2-3 days in the refrigerator, covered.

SKORTHALIA (makes 2 Ĺ cups)
(Greek Garlic Sauce)

1 	large head garlic, peeled and crushed
10	slices white bread, crusts removed (sorry, but honey whole wheat doesnít work in this recipe)
Ĺ C 	white vinegar
2 Tb 	lemon juice
3 Tb 	water

Combine garlic, bread, oil, and vinegar in bowl and allow to stand for 1 hour. Beat with electric mixer or whisk until smooth. Slowly add lemon juice and water and beat until fluffy..

gypsy

WISE WOMAN WAYS

by Deb Hoffman

For the last several years I have used herbal immune-system tonics instead of flu shots with great success. This winter, however, even as the words "I haven't had a cold or flu for three years" was barely out of my mouth, this yearís particularly nasty strains of cold and flu decided it was time to give my immune system a workout! I'd like to share with you a few time-honored herbal cold remedies that helped ease some of my discomfort (I found these in a wonderful little magazine called "Well-Being " that was published back in the 70's).

FIRST AID FOR A COLD- This is a very pleasant tasting tea that is most effective at the onset of a cold. Equal amounts of peppermint, yarrow and elder flowers. Use 1 tsp per cup of boiling water, steep covered for 15 minutes. Drink several cupfuls hot during the day.

HERBAL COLD CAPSULES: These take a little more work but you may find more convenient than tea. Mix equal parts of golden seal root powder, ground myrrh gum, slippery elm powder and cayenne. Cap in size "00" capsules and take two every 4 hours until the cold is gone. (I usually do not recommend golden seal because it has been so intensely over-harvested. If you try this remedy, please use cultivated, not wild-crafted herb. Also, do not use goldenseal for more than 3 weeks as it can become irritating to the system over an extended period of time).

DE-CONGEST-AIDE: Mix equal amounts of lobelia, mullein, echinacea and comfrey. Use one tsp per cup of water. Steep, covered, for 15 minutes. Drink several cupfuls during the day. (There has always been an aura of controversy surrounding the use of lobelia and possible toxicity...however, used following these directions there should be no problem.)

SORE THROAT SOOTHER: Mix equal amounts of comfrey root, marshmallow root, slippery elm bark, wild cherry bark. Using 1 tsp per cup of water, simmer for 20 minutes (I make a quart at a time and add some cinnamon sticks and a few cloves to the mixture). Strain and use as needed...add a little honey and lemon....ummmmm good!

COUGH TAMER: Use 3 oz of the Sore Throat Soother herbal mixture in 1 quart of water and slowly simmer down to 1 pint. Strain. Add 1 Ĺ cups of honey and simmer for 5 minutes. Add 1-2 drops of oil of wintergreen or peppermint.

Now, I know that there are a few of you hardy souls out there who think everything goes better with garlic, so I will share a garlic drink that one of my herb school buddies swore by (I have never been brave enough to try it!).

KEEP-ILLNESS-AT-A-DISTANCE GARLIC DELIGHT: Each morning mix in a blender 1 cup orange juice, 2 tsp olive oil, and as many cloves of garlic as you like. Hmmm, my friend says it makes a "delicious creamy drink that chases away colds and helps your liver too!"


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