day five - venison stew with herb dumplings

Today’s recipe comes from Bree, a township east of The Shire.

Venison originally described any meat of a game animal killed by hunting, such as deer, elk, wild hares and boar. Today, it is almost exclusively used to describe meat from a deer. For this recipe, I used deer venison, locally sourced and according to where it was purchased, hunted with a bow and arrows.

You can purchase venison steaks from any whole foods or organic store, specialty shops and butchers, or ethnic markets. Suet (pronounced “soo-et”), another ingredient in this recipe, is available at any butcher shop for ridiculously cheap. It is mutton fat from around the loins or kidneys. If you can’t find it, or don’t want to use it, substitute it with shortening.

I also used ale in this recipe. If you’re underage in your area, use equal amounts of beef broth.

Venison Stew with Herb Dumplings - Ingredients

2 ½ lbs venison
1 large red onion, sliced
3 starchy potatoes, such as russet, thinly sliced
5 large carrots, sliced
1 cup fresh peas
¼ cup flour
2 cups of ale or beef broth
2 bay leaves
1 tbsp butter
salt and pepper

2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
3 tbsp curled parsley, finely chopped
½ cup shredded suet (or shortening)
1 tsp sea salt
½ cup cold water

Preheat oven to 325 degrees fahrenheit. Melt butter in a pan over medium heat and add the onion. Cook until onions are softened, about five minutes. Add venison and brown all over, about 10 minutes. Allow to cool until venison can be handled, then transfer the meat to a bowl and add flour. Stir until meat is covered. Transfer meat and onions to a baking dish and add potatoes, peas and carrots. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Pour ale (or broth) into the flour bowl and stir until well combined. Pour gently into baking dish. Add bay leaves, cover and cook for 2 hours.

In a bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, salt and parsley. Add the suet, stirring well to combine. Add just enough water to make a dough that is not sticky and able to form small balls of dough (the dumplings). When the stew has cooked for two hours, carefully remove from oven, drop dumpling on top of stew, return to the oven and cook for another hour, or until dumplings are lightly browned and fluffy.

anonymous asked:

Who are your top 5 blogs on Tumblr and why?

I would love, love, love to know who this Grey Face is! Hahaha!

They’ve been asking everyone this, and I’m just so curious!

But hmm…my top 5?

Ginandjack: Aside from House of Vines and A Forest Door, Gin was the first Dionysian blog I had come across, and the one that has inspired me the most. We have become friends in the last year, and I really value his insights and opinions. His poetry is bomb. And he’s just soo…soooo….awesome!

Thiscrookedcrown: Technically the first blog I followed on Tumblr (I came to Tumblr for Ginandjack, followed his posts to Crown, realised I needed to join because they were awesome, made an account, followed Crown, and then followed Gin immediately after.) She is blunt without being rude. She is making a living with her witchcraft. Super intelligent and well researched, and a really great blend of geek and witch. Her posts are always well balanced and I love her personality. She’s adorable, and has a beautiful brain!

Inthebarrows & Bellsandbones: These two are engaged, and he proposed to her over Tumblr. It made my heart squeal when I was reading their backlogs and saw this. Neither of them post as often as I wish they would, but Bells is a beautiful artist (some of my favourite Dionysus art is by her) and a fellow Dionysian, and Barrows makes beautiful and thoughtful posts about devotion to Hermes. But really it’s because they are such kind people that regularly drop me notes to see how I am doing in real life, and they are so thoughtful and sweet!

Daoineile: He is my friendly editor for my fanfic, but is also a fantastic blogger. He is creating his own spiritual path and religion based on his experience with the Otherside and Those he has encountered there. It’s really quite brave and inspiring, and I really admire his dedication to his path.

Fleursmasculines: It got really difficult to pick last person, so I decided to go with this one because they are not a blog I know personally at all, and I loooooooove their blog’s collection of photos. They are essentially what my blog would be if I stopped reblogging witchcraft stuff. A beautiful blend of masculinity and flowers (a juxtaposition I am very drawn to in my magical and religious life), I love almost every post they make, but I have to try to remain composed and in control, otherwise my blog would just end up being a reblogged carbon-copy of theirs! I love their aesthetic!

Other blogs I love and follow, in no particular order:

Also, generally popular blogs I still fangirl over (and who have all reblogged me, or messaged me personally and are fucking awesome and I love them, and kind of are of the “they need no introduction” variety, but still…):

inthebarrows replied to your post:

I love how anons think they are entitled to weigh in on your characters. “I DON’T LIKE IT!!“ well good, asshole. Go make your own fucking character. *kicks something*

byron youre a saint

day one - skink soup

Nothing says comfort on a cold mid-winter’s night like a steamy bowl of soup. “Skink” is an Irish-Scotts term for broth, though skink soup itself usually is a bit creamier than your average broth based soup. It’s s fairly simple, straightforward soup with very few ingredients but is delicious paired with a chunk of warm, homemade bread.

We bought a decent sized chicken and roasted it with sea salt, butter and rosemary. We used the fat and bones to make the stock for the soup, but if you’re in a pinch or don’t feel like prepping a chicken to make stock, feel free to get it already made.

Skink Soup - Ingredients

3 celery stalks, halved lengthwise and coarsely chopped
4 medium carrots, peeled and sliced
1 small onion, diced
4 green onions including dark green tops, chopped
2 cups diced or shredded dark meat chicken
1 egg yolk
½ cup heavy (or double) cream
3 cups chicken stock
5 cups water
Several leaves of butter lettuce (sometimes called Boston lettuce), shredded
2 bay leaves, salt and pepper to taste

This will probably be the easiest soup you ever cook. Put the celery, carrots, onions, chicken, bay leaves and stock into a pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium high and simmer for 15 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.

While the soup is cooking, mix the egg yolk and cream together until it is blended. When the 15 minutes are up, slowly pour the mixture into the soup, stirring to blend. Reduce heat to low, simmer five minutes.

Garnish soup with butter lettuce leaves (about one or two previously whole leaves per bowl) and excess green onion tops.

inthebarrows-deactivated2013092 asked:

Oi! Hermes invented the lyre, so while not technically a god of music Himself, I believe he should be associated with it. Especially considering that lyre so inspires Apollo he was willing to give up his cattle for it. Oh! And Apollo taught Hermes the art or divination by pebbles in exchange for a set of pipes that Hermes made. So yeah :D

day two - blue cheese, walnut and leek tarts

Inspired by Bilbo’s blue cheese (and it’s subsequent demise at the hands of Balin and Dwalin), I wanted to make something warm and delicious with a hint of that deliciously tart cheese. I ended up using a lot more than a hint, but the result was oh so delicious.

These are great hot out of the oven, or reheated with a side of bacon or sausage for a great breakfast, second breakfast or elevensies treat. They’ll keep in the fridge for about five days. This recipe makes 12 tarts.

Blue Cheese, Walnut and Leek Tarts - Ingredients

For the tart dough:

1 ¾ cups of all purpose, unbleached flour (plus extra for dusting)
pinch of sea salt
7 tbsp of salted butter, diced (plus a little extra for greasing the pan)
½ cup roughly chopped walnut halves


2 tbsp salted butter
2 stalks of celery, halved and roughly chopped
1 large leek, white and light green parts, diced
3 large egg yolks
1 cup heavy (or double) cream
6 oz blue cheese
salt and pepper

Use a bit of butter to lightly grease a regular sized 12 count muffin pan. Mix the flour, salt and diced butter together and either crumble it with your hands, toss it in a food processor, or throw it in your blender. If you go the blender route, remember to pulse it in short five seconds bursts, and shake the blender pitcher to unsettle the flour-butter mixture to keep the blades from sticking and the motor from overheating. Whichever method you choose, the end result should look like buttery breadcrumbs. Transfer to a mixing bowl and stir in the walnuts. Add just enough cold water to make the dough come together in a ball when stirred. Depending on how humid your kitchen is, the amount will vary. It was rainy today when I made these, so I only needed a splash of water, your mileage may vary.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead it into a ball. Separate into two balls, and then separate the dough further into 12 even pieces. Roll each piece into a flat circle about 4 ½ inches (roughly) in diameter. Press each piece carefully into the muffin pan until they form little cups. Cut some wax or parchment paper into little squares, carefully put them in the dough cups, and fill them with either pie weights or dried beans (I used dried turtle beans). Put the whole thing in the fridge for half an hour, and preheat the oven to 400°F/204°C/Gas Mark 6.

After half an hour, remove the beans/weights and papers, and bake the tart shells for 10 minutes. While they are baking, start the filling. Melt two tablespoons of butter in a skillet until it turns clear, froths and then starts to turn a bit brown and nutty smelling. Don’t let it burn! Reduce the heat to medium and toss in the celery and leeks. Cook for about 10 minutes or until they are soft. Remove from heat, stir in two tablespoons of the cream and all of the blue cheese. Stir until the cheese begins the melt and the lot of it is mixed. Heat the remaining cream in a small saucepan until it just begins to bubble and then pour it over the egg yolks, stirring the mixture as you do. Spoon in the cheese mixture until well blended and let it set. By now, the tarts should have been removed from the oven, so spoon the creamy concoction into the tart shells. Don’t panic if you think you’re going to have too much, you won’t! If the mix spills over and covers the tart shells, this is okay as well. Wipe the pan clean before putting in the oven, and bake at the same temperature for 10 minutes, then turn the pan and bake for another 5 minutes.

Let the tarts sit for 5 minutes after removing them from the oven. This not only allows them to cool enough to handle, but also lets the filling settle down inside the shells. Serve immediately.

To reheat: heat oven to 350°F/176°C/Gas Mark 4, heat for about 10 minutes

Rule #1; Always Post Rules.
Rule #2; Answer the Questions the person tagged you in, and write 11 new ones.
Rule #3; Tag 5 New people and tag them to this post
Rule #4; Let them know you’ve tagged them.

Your Questions:

1.  A childhood memory that makes you smile?
Luckily, I have many.
I always liked the memories I have of sleeping over at my grandparents’ house with my sister and my cousin. We’d set a tent up in the basement sometimes, and we’d bring in all the toys in the house, and sleep down there. Then, in the morning we’d climb the stairs and sit around the table and eat breakfast. I associate cornflakes with bananas with my grandparents because when we stayed there late on weekends, we ate bowls of it late at night, instead of another meal, and then if we slept over we’d have it in the morning too. It’s all very warm and fuzzy, you know?

2. Do you have a comfort food? What?
Stage one comfort food is cereal, partly for the warm fuzzies mentioned above. After a long day, when I’m tired and hungry and lazy, I could eat 6 bowls of cereal. I love sugar, and I love milk.
Stage two comfort food is cookies and milk. In particular, President’s Choice chocolate chip cookies. Oreos will do in a pinch. Again, I love sugar, and I love milk.
Stage three, which is, like, “OMG MY LIFE IS FALLING APART AND I THINK I MIGHT DROWN IN MY STRESS”, is straight up chocolate. I’ve only gotten this bad about 3 times, but all three times there was no chocolate left in the house, and I nearly killed a bitch.

Other foods that make me make little, audible cooing noises of pleasure: cherries, cherry juice, pie (especially cherry), steak, and ribs. 

3. What drew you to tumblr?
Yeah, Ginandjack and Thiscrookedcrown are the reasons I joined Tumblr. 

4. The perfect article of clothing? What is it/does it look like?
A Men’s corset vest. Basically, a vest with an integrated corset. I’ve seen them online before, some were more obvious, and some were double-breasted, which hid the busking in the front. They were beautiful!
I also have a soft spot for Edwardian frock coats, highheels on men, and long-sleeved cotton t-shirts with a deep-v. 

5. A favorite drink?
Milk, cherry juice, cream Earl Grey tea, and a white zinfandel from the Gallo Family wines.

6. A personal hero?
Bjork, and Anita Roddick.
I actually only just now realized that both of the people I consider to be my biggest celebrity heros are really opinionated and ballsy women. Huh. 

7. A quote that moves you?
“It’s in our hands; it always was.” - ‘It’s In Our Hands’, Bjork
“Every boy is a snake; is a lily. Every pearl is a lynx; is a girl.” - 'Ocenia’, Bjork
“It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog” - Mark Twain? 

8. Dark woods or light woods (for furniture, floors, etc)?
That completely depends. My apartment right now is all light woods, and white walls. The witchy shop I created in my head when I was younger was all sky-blue walls, with distressed white furniture, and light woods. But I also love dark oak, with shades of sepia and parchment. It all depends on the mood you’re setting. 

9. An everyday item you can’t stand/strongly dislike?
Leggings as pants. I live in a city where that is an every day item, and I can’t stand it. Sorry guys, not sorry.

10. A time you felt inspired or stricken by something clearly outside yourself?
I got into a really fucking awful fight with the father of a friend of mine over his use of the word “f*ggot”. I know that the fight came from within me; I wasn’t possessed of a great rage on behalf of anyone else. This was all me. But outside influences made it possible for me to step outside of my usual reaction to things like this and to stand up and put this guy in his place. My work with Dionysus being part of that. 

11. A sound you love/a sound you hate?
Love: Peepers. Those frogs that come out in late spring and early summer, that start chirping in the middle of the night and are part of that beautiful “still, hot, summer night” symphonic trio made by peepers, crickets, and cicadas.

Hate: The sound of a knife scraping a dinner plate. It gives me physical reactions. None of them good. 

12.(Bonus cause I like this one) A favorite myth?
Now that I’ve read it, I love the story in The Bacchae.
Before that, I really liked the story of Athena and Arachne, and the story of Chronos eating his children. 

My Questions:

  1. Longest time you’ve gone without showering/bathing?
  2. Movie that makes you cry every single time?
  3. First song you remember slow-dancing to, or 'dirty dancing’ to?
  4. A movie you were really excited about, but totally let you down?
  5. Favourite spellcraft tool, component, or action?
  6. Sriracha, Frank’s Red Hot, or Tabasco?
  7. Weirdest dream you’ve had recently?
  8. Actor or actress everyone loves and you hate?
  9. Spellcraft element, or technique you’d like most to try next?
  10. Where does your screenname come from?
  11. If you could ask anyone on Tumblr to marry you, who would it be?


BONUS: (cuz you’re chatty) Happyheretic 

My Tumblr Crushes:

  1. themanofonebook (12%)
  2. wolfwithpanthereyes (10%)
  3. javert-fashionpolice (6%)
  4. inthebarrows (5%)
  5. shadowkingsmidlifecrisis (5%)
  6. witchlingfumbles (5%)
  7. shadowstep-of-bast (4%)
  8. syfy (2%)
  9. singingasongofanchormen (2%)



1. First impression: you are my thilbo twin
2. Truth is: you ship thilbo just as hard as I do
3. How old do you look: 20~?
4. Have you ever made me laugh: yes! I love your posts about thilbo
5. Have you ever made me mad: nope!
6. Best feature: your otp feel posts
7. Have I ever had a crush on you: maybe ;)
8. You’re my: thilbo twin
9. Name in my phone: no
10. Should you post this too? yes please!

what's this all about?

So bellsandbones and I had this idea to take on a one year food challenge, in which we made all of our own food from scratch, and the real challenge would be that it was only food that could be found in Middle Earth, specifically the Shire.

Thus Straight From The Shire was created. This blog itself was actually a last minute idea. I love sharing recipes, so we’ve decided to chronicle our little year-long challenge this way, making a sort of unofficial Hobbit-y cookbook.

We’ll be updating with recipes (and pictures!) Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, as well as possibly a weekend day every now and then if we can.

here’s hoping we don’t say FUCK IT in the first week WOO!


 replied to your 



Hey since you are into the Helenic practices would you know to tell me if Hermes could be considered a god of divination, since he is a messenger.. if he could bring us answers and such?

LOOK AT HOW WRONG YOU ARE. Hermes is master of divination by pebbles, and the infamous plug your ears, run into a crowd and unplug them. First thing you hear is your answer.

1) You’re a smartass. No wonder you follow Hermes. XP
2) That second divination style is fucking boss.
3) Thank you for correcting me.
4) Smartass.