Eating by the Moon Cycles

by Diane Perazzo and Candice Bernes
originally published in Practically Pagan: An Introduction to Alternative Guides to Living. Moon Books: 2021 ISBN 978-1-78904-893-3

Grandmother Moon has always provided a steady beacon that lights our path and there are many ways we can align our lives with her ever-changing cycles. Did you know that there are healthy ways you can cook and plan your meals to coincide with the phases of the moon? This article shares some practical tips and delicious recipes that will help you do just that. You don’t need to be an expert cook to prepare the recipes. The most important ingredient is your desire to connect deeply — with yourself, with nature and with the cycles of the moon.

New Moon (or Dark Moon)

The new moon is a perfect time to change or adjust your unhealthy eating patterns. During the three-day period known as the dark moon, we become more in tune with the depth of night and Dark Goddess energies. The new moon is a powerful time to set intentions and do some soul searching.

Many people fast during the dark moon to clear their mind and body. If you decide to do so, make sure to drink plenty of fluids including supportive herbal teas and drink fresh clear apple or berry juices. Once you break your fast, start with simple nourishing foods such as good quality yogurt and fresh fruit. Savour each bite and imagine that you are resetting your inner fire and welcoming the coming waxing energy of the moon.

New Moon Prayer for Healthy Eating

Great dark Goddess Hecate; Provide me with the strength and resolve I need to cleanse my body and my kitchen of that which no longer serves me. Bless my simple fare with your love and nourishment and help me become healthier and more fit. Blessed be!

Dark Moon Herbal Teas

The dark moon invites us deep into the watery realms of our unconscious mind. What better way to nourish this time than to blend some delicious herbal teas? The herbs you choose may be seasonal, intuitive or purposefully medicinal. 

  • If you want a morning detox tea, try dandelion leaves and nettle.
  • If you want a refreshing afternoon tea brew mint leaves or fresh ginger.
  • For the evening, damiana will bring a loving glow to your cheeks and mugwort will help enhance your dreams.

Choose your herbs with gratitude. Pour the near-boiling water over them with mindfulness. Let the herbs steep covered to keep their nourishing volatile oils from dissipating. When you pour your cup, listen to the sound of the water, feel the warmth of the cup in your hands, inhale the essence of the brew. Connect into the watery realm of the new moon that lives within you.

Waxing Moon

The waxing moon is a time for growth and renewal and for strengthening our minds and bodies. It is the perfect time to experiment with new foods, herbs and recipes and to reorganize and stock up your pantry.

During the waxing moon, your appetite may increase, and you may need to work a little harder to keep your eating in check. Try to eat more protein instead of turning to quick carbs and drink lots of fluids to feel fuller and control your cravings. Focus on eating foods that build your strength and immune system so you can fight off viruses and revitalize your body such as bell peppers, broccoli, garlic, ginger, spinach and almonds. Let your cooking conjure abundance, creativity, love and healing.

Waxing Moon Prayer for Healthy Eating

Brigit, Goddess of the hearth, the fire and the forge. Bless my food stores and keep them healthy and abundant and honour my table with your gentle nourishment. Watch over my kitchen so it may always be rich in learning, love and laughter. Blessed be!

Spring Greens Salad with Soaked Seeds

Seeds and milk are symbols of the early life-flowing energy of the waxing moon. Soaking seeds wakes them up and coaxes them to grow. Young greens are also filled with expansive life-force and they nourish the ewe who then nourishes the lamb with her abundant milk.  Prepare this salad to honour the life-force.

Ingredients:

  • Baby spinach, cilantro, parsley, arugula, kale and/or foraged greens such as dandelion leaves*
  • Almonds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, hemp seeds
  • Optional: ½ lemon; sprinkle of salt; dried nettle seeds

Preparation:

  1. About four hours ahead of time, soak a handful of raw nuts and seeds in water. (The hempseeds do not need to be soaked.)
  2. Choose a combination of greens. 
  3. Chop or tear them thoughtfully and enjoy their aroma.
  4. Top the greens with a handful of the soaked raw nuts and seeds
  5. Drizzle the salad with olive oil, squeeze half a lemon over the top and sprinkle with salt and dried nettle seeds.

As you eat, take advantage of all your senses to notice and enjoy how the tastes, textures, scents and shades of the different greens blend and enhance one another and give thanks to Mother Gaia for the generous nourishment they provide.

*If you are using foraged greens be sure to carefully identify what you are taking, harvest sustainably and with gratitude.

Full Moon

The full moon is a delightful and sumptuous time to treat yourself to some of the foods you love the most and to celebrate the blessings in your life. As the moon shines full, enjoy its abundance and plan some extra time to prepare foods for a special gathering or celebration for you and those you love.

Roast a turkey with all the trimmings or bake a salmon using spices that are warm and spicy. Treat yourself to a favourite desert or other food that is luxurious and delicious such as avocado or good quality chocolate (see recipe below). Moon-inspired vegetables such as mushrooms, potatoes, cabbage and cauliflower are fun to serve with creamy sauces seasoned with basil or tarragon and juicy tomatoes.

Full Moon Prayer for Healthy Eating

Inanna, Goddess of love, sensuality and beauty: We celebrate you! Bless us and those we love as we gather to share our meal and fill us with your beauty and grace. Accept our thanksgiving as we enjoy the earth’s bounty and open our loving hearts in joyful praise. Blessed Be!

Dark Chocolate Full Moon Mousse

What better way unabashedly indulge the senses than to treat your loved ones to a delicious desert made from dark chocolate and whipping cream? 

Ingredients

  • ½ cup 70% dark chocolate
  • 1 cup 35% whipping cream
  • 2 Tbsp sugar or other sweetener

Preparation

  1. Place a metal mixing bowl in the fridge.
  2. Break the chocolate into pieces.
  3. In a double boiler (or by placing another metal bowl overtop a pot of simmering water) stir the chocolate until melted. Put aside and let it come to room temperature.
  4. Whisk the whipping cream and sugar in the chilled bowl until peaks form.
  5. Fold half the whipping cream into the chocolate and then gently fold in the rest.
  6. Chill in the fridge as is or place into small individual cups for sharing.

The most important step in this recipe is to take the time to fully enjoy this rich dessert. As you eat, enjoy with all your senses and praise the silky pleasure of your creation as you indulge, and of course utensils are optional.

Waning Moon

The period just after a full moon is the perfect time to start a weight loss or healthy eating plan. As the light of the moon slowly decreases, your cravings may decrease and your weight will be easier to maintain. This is also a good time to tidy and clean your kitchen and finish up leftovers. Rid your fridge and cupboard of stale foods with intention and as you do so, visualize those unwanted aspects of your life that need to be cast off.

During the waning moon, choose lighter proteins such as tofu, light fish or yogurt, beans. Cook a clear broth-based soup full of simmering root veggies (see recipe below) and light pastas or rice. The herbal teas we blended during the Dark moon are also useful now.

Waning Moon Prayer for Healthy Eating

Cerridwen, Goddess of transformation. Help me to discard that which no longer nourishes me and keep my mind and kitchen free of clutter. Bless my witch’s path as I dedicate my hearth and home in the service of love and truth. Blessed Be!

Roasted Vegetable Broth

The waning moon is a time to honour the ending of things, tapping into the simple wisdom of what to discard and what to keep. Preparing a broth from ingredients you find in your fridge is a wonderful way to meditate on this.

Suggested ingredients

  • Onions, garlic, carrots, celery, beets, sweet potatoes and/or burdock root
  • Olive oil
  • Greens such as parsley stems or celery leaves if you have them
  • Optional: Small piece of chaga mushroom (forage sustainably or purchase from a health food stores)

Preparation

  1. Pre-heat over to 400F.
  2. With intention, choose a variety of vegetables in your fridge or pantry that may be too wilted to eat fresh.
  3. Wash them and place them on a baking tray.
  4. Drizzle with olive oil.
  5. Bake in the preheated oven until golden and dark brown. (Check and stir occasionally if you wish.)
  6. Transfer to a stock pot and add water, chaga, parsley stems or celery leaves.
  7. Bring to a boil and then simmer for about one hour. (Alternatively place in a slow cooker for 2 – 3 hours.)
  8. Strain in a fine mesh sieve.
  9. Add salt to taste.

As you enjoy the broth, bring your awareness to the transformations you are supporting in your life, and the discernment required to let things go and make room for what lies ahead.

Image: Getty Images

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