“And don’t think the garden looses its ecstasy in winter. It’s quiet but the roots down there are riotous” is a Rumi quote I often think about this time of the year. Usually from the perspective that while one half of the planet seems to rest, the other is just beginning first harvests at the height of the agricultural cycle.
Seeds hold a similar riotousness. All that possibility waiting to explode into the physical world. It makes perfect sense that they would be a symbol of all that is percolating beneath the cover of winter stillness while we start a new year with ideas and resolutions rumbling around inside us.
One simple way to add seeds into Imbolc/Candlemas celebrations is to sprinkle them on top of cookies.
This link is to the same whipped shortbread recipe I used for these lemon poppy seed cookies but if you have a favourite shortbread/sugar cookie recipe, feel free to substitute. This post is more about how to incorporate one of the symbols of Imbolc into daily life and special occasions than using a specific recipe.
Once the dough is ready, roll it out evenly. Sprinkle with poppy seeds and gently roll again, more to secure the seeds to the dough than to make the dough any thinner. Cut shapes with a glass or cookie cutter and bake.
The middle row were made from the rerolled dough. You can see they don’t look as dramatic as the seeds are inside the dough and therefore you get varying speckles of grey and black.
The quick and easy was to resolve this is to sprinkle a few more poppy seeds on top each time the dough is rolled out and cut, like the bottom row.
Once the cookies have cooled drizzle with a lemon flavoured glaze made from icing sugar and just enough lemon juice to create a thick paste, thin enough to drip and thick enough to stay in place, be visible and dry.
Imbolc is a time of abundant potential but not so much abundance in the world of kitchen supplies, unless you were well prepared from the previous harvest. Today we seem to pop by the local grocer and pick up what is needed but in years past a lemon flavoured anything would have been an extra special treat.
Drizzling a little lemon glaze instead of icing the entire cookie reflects the limited availability of the season and the generosity of sharing a delight that would have been scarce even though technically in season.
How are you planning to share the riotousness going on in your roots?
Lemon Poppy Seed Cookies from My Kitchen Wand