I was scared to open the container because I recognized it. "That's the thing I put in the refrigerator six months ago,: I mumbled to myself. Cleaning out the fridge is never fun, but it's always a little worse when you realize that your negligence has resulted in quite the science experiment. I took a deep breath and removed the lid from the container, yup the leftover taco fixings from that dinner back in September were now fuzzy and a variety of different colors.
"Rotten, gross, and disgusting!" I thought, and it's hard to imagine anyone disagreeing with me. I started walking the moldy container over to the kitchen compost bin, when a thought suddenly hit me. "Rotten, gross, disgusting...just like that guy on social media I wish would leave me alone." I put the lid back on the container and rushed to grab a pen and a piece of paper.
With a look of glee upon my face, I wrote down the name of my online tormenter on the piece of paper, along with the phrases "go away" and "leave me alone." Energy pulsed and radiated through me as I wrote the words out; my pen suddenly felt more like a wand than a writing instrument. Satisfied with the brevity of my words and their intent, I took the lid off my container once more and stuck my piece of paper into the moldy mess in front of me. As I pushed my piece of paper into the mold I said, "May your negativity and unkindness be swallowed up and eaten away! I consign your words and action to this moldy place where they will hurt no one and disappear! So mote it be!"
The stench of rotting refried beans now too much to bare, I put the lid back on the container, and thoroughly washed my hands. Scrubbed up and safe from the unknown germs I had just encountered, I placed my container of rotting leftovers back in its original spot in the refrigerator. As I tucked my moldy container behind a jar of apple sauce I added a little bit of extra oomph to my spell: "I send you to this dark and cold place where you will be forgotten, unable to harm me or anyone else." I then promptly closed the refrigerator door and over the next few days forgot about my rotten-leftovers-spell—but my spell didn't forget about me.
Over the next few weeks I noticed something different online: it was quiet, very quiet. The person who had been intent on slandering me had stopped commenting on my life altogether. I'm not sure I connected the dots leading from my spell back to my less-than-kind acquaintance immediately, but I figured it out the next time I cleaned out the refrigerator. There was the initial groan upon spotting the rotting taco-fixing remains, and then a happy smile when I found my piece of spell paper rotting away and nearly unrecognizable. My magick might have been a bit unconventional, but it worked! And this time around I disposed of my eight-month-old leftovers like a responsible adult.
When Witches envision magick they often picture spells cast by candlelight, perhaps surrounded by neatly organized jars full of dried herbs. But for most of us, magick is much messier than that. One of the tricks that's rarely articulated in Witch books is that magick is everywhere, especially in the kitchen! Now, you don't have to use rotting leftovers for your magickal work if that grosses you out (though I swear by their efficacy) there are lots of other things just as useful (and generally much less gross).
One of the most magickal spots in my wife's and my house is our spice rack. It's a spot I go to often while cooking, but it's also a place I go to when there's a little bit of magick that needs to be done. There are dozens (possibly hundreds?) of spell books that will tell you what basil and oregano can do for you magickally, but what I love most about magick from the spice rack is that I know the spices there inside and out. There's no need to consult a book or look something up online; I simply use the spices magickally like I would when cooking.
Want to add a little heat to your love life? Add some cayenne pepper to that sachet you are working on. I associate the smell of rosemary with safety and security, which is why I sprinkle it around windows and doorways of my house. Because of the phrase "Open sesame," I use sesame seeds when performing spells for new beginnings. The herbs we use from the spice rack don't even always have to be our favorites. Want to connect with a lost loved one? Sprinkle a little bit of their favorite spice on your altar at Samhain and ask them to pay you a visit.
The spice rack is the most obvious "go to" spot for Witches, possibly because a collection of spices on a rack resembles a collection of witching herbs, but everything in your kitchen is fair game for magick. The most sacred (or at least most important in the morning) spot in our house is the coffee maker, with its collection of teas and whole bean coffee close by. Need your magick to work quickly? Add some coffee beans (or brewed coffee) to whatever you are working on; caffeine works on both a mundane and a magickal level!
Teas allow us to easily and quickly ingest the magickal powers of a variety of herbs. I don't cook with lavender, but I prize lavender for its cleansing properties. When I need to get rid of some internal negativity I brew up a pot of lavender-infused tea and let it work its magick. You don't even have to drink tea to use it in your magick. When I need to slow things down I'll write down the things I need more time finish, place that note in a favorite chalice, and then pour some chamomile tea over it. Chamomile makes me drowsy, and after drinking it I feel like everything is moving in slow motion.
Need to deliver a little bit of payback to someone who has wronged you? Print out a picture of the offending party and dice their picture up along with some onions. The onions should make the focus of your spell feel tearful and remorseful about their bad actions. When done cutting up the pictures and the onions deposit what's left of them in the garbage can or the compost pile—out of sight and out of mind! Trash cans are great for not only taking out the mundane garbage, but the magickal trash as well!
The sky's the limit when it comes to the magick in your kitchen. And the best part of the food and herbs in your kitchen is that you are already familiar with them. Anything you eat or cook with can be used to cast a spell or two, even the rotting mess you left in your kitchen all those months ago.
Jason Mankey is a third-degree Gardnerian High Priest and helps run two Witchcraft covens in the San Francisco Bay Area with his wife, Ari. He is a popular speaker at Pagan and Witchcraft events across North America and ...