E.R. Allen May, 2011
Beltane, or May Day, is the time to release your inner Pan. Cut loose! Revel in your innocent gaiety. Take pleasure in the senses. Fertility and the Great Rite are the focus here. The God and Goddess join together, as well as many of our animal brothers and sisters.
We can honor this union through foods that resemble the phallus and vulva. Try items such as bread and pretzel sticks, bagels, doughnuts, rigatoni, tortellini, etc. Cookies, breads, and crackers can be shaped into representations as realistic as you deem appropriate, although simple ovals and rectangles will suffice.
Nature also provides symbols through bananas, peaches, asparagus, oysters, walnut halves, zucchini, and cucumbers. Foods known to be aphrodisiacs are also appropriate, including avocado, figs, pineapple, and chocolate. Of course, fertility foods, especially milk, eggs, and honey, are a great addition.
The recipe I’d like to share today combines a nod to the tradition of leaping over the Beltane fire as well as the male genitalia, while using foods that honor procreation. Last year I heard a wonderful joke, which shared a wise proverb for the men: Never leap over the bale fire sky-clad…unless you want roasted nuts.
Roasted Beltane Nuts
1. Preheat oven to 325.
2. In a large bowl, combine 2 tbsp sugar and 1 tsp salt.
3. Smash 1 garlic clove and heat over medium in a skillet along with ¼ cup honey. Stir in ¾ tsp cayenne pepper (or more if you like it hot!). Remove garlic clove.
4. Stir in 4 cups roasted, unsalted nuts. Any nuts will do; pick your favorite. Or use almonds, pine nuts, and/or walnuts for a double wammy. Toss well to coat.
5. Spread nuts in a single layer on a sprayed sheet and bake for 10 minutes.
6. Let cool slightly. Toss with sugar and salt mixture. Let cool completely before eating.
Notes: If avoiding nuts, swap in chickpeas! Just drain, rinse, and pat dry. Roast at 350 for about 45 minutes or until crunchy. Jiggle the pan every few minutes so they brown evenly and do not burn. Then follow the steps above.
Enjoy & Blessed Be!