Lúnasa is almost upon us and now is the time to start thinking about the bread you’re going to bake for the wonderful celebration of the first harvest! Baking bread is a traditional and popular way to give thanks to the Gods and incorporate the beautiful goodness that is baked bread.
I’ve included this recipe here for you to use as a jumpstart if you’ve never baked bread before. Using just 8 ingredients – and no eggs or milk – this recipe is easily accessible for even the newest baker. Don’t let the yeast intimidate you and give it a go!
This recipe is a modification of a bread recipe found at Taste of Home – I just made it my own. However, you gotta give credit where credit is due!
Lúnasa Herbal Bread
As the first harvest draws near, baking bread is a staple way to celebrate Lúnasa. Mix your own herbs into the dough, carve sigils into the top, and bake it with intention. Enjoy with butter, jam, or however you wish!
- 1 package active dry yeast
- 2 1/4 cups warm water (110-115F)
- 3 tbsp sugar (for the dry ingredients)
- 1/2 tsp sugar (for the yeast proofing)
- 1 tbsp salt
- 2 tbsp canola oil (olive oil, vegetable oil, or similar will work too)
- 6 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- herbal mixture (I used a combination of basil, bay leaves, thyme, and rosemary)
In the warm water, mix together the packet of active dry yeast and 1/2 tsp of sugar.
In a large bowl, mix together remaining sugar, salt, herbal mixture, and 3 cups of flour. Mix until it is combined well.
Once your yeast has proofed (bubbles will begin to form on top), slowly stir in canola oil.
Add your yeast/oil mixture to your dry ingredients, slowly stirring to combine. At this point, your bread dough will look like batter.
Stir in more flour 1/2 cup at a time until a smooth dough has formed. You might not use the entire 6 3/4 cups of flour. That's okay.
Turn your smooth dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead for about 5-10 minutes until it is smooth and elastic.
Cover the dough with a towel in a lightly greased bowl and place it in a warm, dry place for 2 hours to rise.
Punch down the dough to get the air out and turn it onto a lightly floured surface. At this point, you may split your dough in half to make two loaves if you want.
Shape and cover again to rise for another 1 1/2 hours.
Preheat your oven to 375F
Bake for about 35 minutes until the bread sounds hollow when tapped and is golden brown on top.
Let cool before cutting and enjoy!
Be intentional with your herbs and use what you have available to you. You can also carve sigils or symbols into the top of your bread before you put it in the oven.
At the 30 minute mark, I pulled my bread out and lightly coated the top with melted butter for added flavor and a golden brown color.
If a video is more your style, check out my how-to and bake along with me!
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