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The Ultimate Love Spell in a Bowl: Beef Bourguignon | Sara's Kitchen Witchcraft

This'll help you understand where the phrase "labor of love" comes from, that's for sure.

Pasta Bake, Weeknight Meal, One Pot, Easy Dinner, Courage, Protection, Easy Dinner, Spells That Work, Witchcraft, Kitchen Witch,, Autumn, Psychic, Spiritual

Now, listen: when it comes to French food, I always eye it with suspicion. Why? Because all these so-called traditional meals usually end up loaded with such rich, savory, expensive things that my actual Slovene peasant DNA immediately calls BS. While we're out here eating potatoes fried with a bunch of onion and maybe some sausage (maybe)—while we're out here throwing pickled cabbage and beans and bay leaves in a pot and calling it soup—you mean to tell me that these folks in France are just pouring a whole bottle of wine into their soup?

Mhm. Sure. Tale bom verjala ko prašički letijo.

Nonetheless, all my Slovene suspicion aside, I will tell you this: the many dishes touted in France as classic and to-die-for are hyped up for a reason. If you remember my Coq au Vin recipe, in which we also coded that one for love, you'll be glad to know that you have another option in the love spell realm that will absolutely knock the socks off whoever it is you're trying to impress. This is a make ahead recipe that will ensure that come Valentine's Day (or... for my practicing Catholics, the day before or after Valentine's Day, since Ash Wednesday falls right on this Saint's feast day), you'll only have a little work to do to prepare for your honored guest.

And with a mean as rich and luxurious as beef bourguignon, you know we have so many options for what to invoke in the magic: the tomato, thyme, carrot, onion, pinot noir (especially if you made sure to look at what notes are hidden within it—in my case strawberry and cherry) and little touch of honey and nutmeg in the mashed potato side I paired with this make the most intense blend of love-based items for your spell. You'll absolutely be feeling the love in the air by the end of the night if you pull out a fat pot full of all this and set the table with some good wine to pair with it, trust me.

So let me walk you through a little bit about the magic.

Magic in Beef Bourguignon

"Oh my God, Sara, isn't it super unethical to do love spells on people—?"

Not really. Moreover, a lot of cultures and groups of people have love spells as a key part of their crafts, and it's rude as hell (if not, in several cases, downright racist regarding POC practices) to spit all over these old school spells. I'm not going to say I never also fell into whatever goofy nonsense people come up with about love spells—that they're like, magical assault or something—but I can say I learned better, precisely because I listened to the folks who have them as part of their cultural and magical tradition.

And I can safely say that: if there is no love between you and someone you're looking to woo to begin with, then the love spells don't really do anything. It's like watering dirt that has no seed in it. What are you expecting to pop up out of that soil with all that watering and weeding if you never did any sowing to begin with? In this case, if you notice that you're getting closer to someone and that they have hinted at some kind of affection for you, this love spell serves to fan the flames of that love—to grow a seed already planted into a strong, healthy crop.

In this pot of braised goodness are a few things that we naturally associate with love and romance: something rich and hearty, which screams luxury and special occasions, as well as beautiful red wine full of all those oaky, fruity notes (red berries like strawberries and cherries are a classic for romance, which pinot noir often has), and the red tomato, the delicate and floral thyme, and the fertility-based, hyper-charged carrot. While you can make rice or fresh bread with this, too, making a sweet and floral mashed potato that includes some honey also just sweetens the deal. But if you don't like mashed potato, or you want to show off your stellar bread baking skills (God, can you imagine this with sourdough???) those four ingredients listed plus the richness of the overall dish will set you up right.

We're inviting some serious energy into this meal, most notably with the planetary influences of Venus and Mars, fantastic for all things love and passion, and the Moon, which is wonderful for that dreamy, floating-on-air feel you want to foster with your partner. Add the elements of water, all about emotion and expression, and fire for that creative and passionate vibe, and you're stirring up quite the beautiful magic into your food that, when you focus on growing that seed of love and romance as you cook, will make a for a pretty glorious night. This is a show-stopper of a dish, though; even if you weren't a kitchen witch, it would be an impressive thing to whip up in your own kitchen for a date.

Beef Bourguignon

Prep time: 45 minutes

Cook time: 5-6 hours

Makes 5-6 servings


  • 4lbs beef pot roast (underblade)

  • 8oz thick cut bacon, sliced

  • 4 big carrots, diced

  • 1 large onion, diced

  • 1 bag small boiler onions

  • 10oz mushrooms, sliced

  • 4-5 cloves garlic, minced

  • 750ml Pinot Noir

  • 1/2 stick of unsalted butter

  • 3 cups beef/chicken stock

  • 3/4 cup flour

  • 1/3rd can tomato sauce (or 3 Tbsp tomato paste)

  • 1 Tbsp dried thyme

  • 3 bay leaves

  • Salt & pepper to taste

(Optional) Mashed Potato Side

  • 4 russet potatoes, peeled & diced

  • 1 1/2 Tbsp honey

  • 1/2 Tbsp thyme

  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg

  • 1/2 stick of unsalted butter

  • 1/3 cup Greek yogurt

  • Salt & pepper to taste


  1.  Fry your bacon until all the fat has rendered and the bits are crispy, then remove bacon and set aside.

  2.  Trim fat from beef and cut into chunks, then season with salt and pepper and dredge in flour

  3.  Fry in bacon fat in batches until all pieces have a crust on each side, but aren’t fully cooked through

  4.  Fry onion in remaining fat (add oil if needed to prevent burning)

  5.  When onions are done, add garlic, then carrots and tomato, frying for 5-10min

  6.  Deglaze with wine, scraping everything off the bottom, and then add stock, thyme, bay leaves, & beef with all its juice & bring to a simmer

  7.  Preheat oven to 350 F

  8.  Let simmer in oven for 2 1/2 - 3 hours, then remove bay leaves, let cool, and put in the fridge to deepen the flavor overnight.

  9.  Let the pot warm up at least one hour before returning to the heat the next day to warm up. Meat should fall apart.

  10.  Peel your onions (easier to do if you boil them first), then fry in a pan until browned on each side. Add to beef.

  11.  Cook mushrooms until water releases, then add butter, salt, pepper, & thyme

  12.  Add to pot, mix, and serve with mashed potato, rice, or fresh bread.

Don't let the cook time fool you; a good half of that is just waiting around for it to do its thing in the oven, which gives you plenty of time to do things like clean the kitchen and relax while you wait. This dish is a lot of work, but for a meal that you'd otherwise only ever see in some super fancy restaurants, it's worth the effort. We ate up the whole thing over a good few days, and it's rich and savory enough to absolutely knock you flat, so enjoy it! ♥


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Christian Witch, Sara Raztresen, Slovenian, Fantasy, The Glass Witch, Writer, Spiritual, Christianity, Kitchen Witch, Kitchen Witchery, Witchcraft

Sara Raztresen is a Slovene-American writer, screenwriter, and Christian witch. Her fantasy works draw heavily on the wisdom she gathers from her own personal and spiritual experience, and her spiritual practice borrows much of the whimsy and wonder that modern society has relegated to fairy-and-folktale. Her goal is to help people regain their spiritual footing and discover God through a new (yet old) lens of mysticism.

Follow Sara on Tiktok, Instagram, Twitter, and Youtube, and explore her fiction writing here.

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