Sunday, 2 January 2011

Conxuro da Queimada

Happy New Year 2011! I hope you all will have a lovely year with lots of great postcards. :) 2010 was pretty good for me postcard-wise, I'm hoping 2011 will be the same. I got some Spanish and Portuguese postcards for Christmas from my friend Wanda. Yeah, my friends know I like postcards :D There were some really nice ones amongst those cards so I wanted to post about a few of them here. The first one is a very cool recipe card. :)

'Conxuro da Queimada' translates as 'Queimada's Spell'. It is an alcoholic beverage of Galician tradition. Queimada is a punch made from Galician aguardente (Orujo Gallego) - a spirit distilled from wine and flavoured with special herbs or coffee, plus sugar, lemon peel, coffee beans and cinnamon.

Typically, while preparing the punch a spell or incantation is recited, so that special powers are conferred to the queimada and those drinking it. Then the queimada is set alight, and slowly burns as more brandy is added. Wanda very helpfully included an English translation on the back of the card:

Owls, barn owls, toads and witches. Demons, goblins and devils, spirits of the misty vales.

Crows, salamanders and mages, charms of the folk healer(ess). Rotten pierced canes, home of worms and vermin. Wisps of the Holy Company, evil eye, black witchcraft, scent of the dead, thunder and lightning. Howl of the dog, omen of death, maws of the satyr and foot of the rabbit. Sinful tongue of the bad woman married to an old man.

Satan and Beelzebub's Inferno, fire of the burning corpses, mutilated bodies of the indecent ones, farts of the arses of doom, bellow of the enraged sea.

Useless belly of the unmarried woman, speech of the cats in heat, dirty turf of the wicked born goat.

With this bellows I will pump the flames of this fire which looks like that from Hell, and witches will flee, straddling their brooms, going to bathe in the beach of the thick sands. Hear! Hear the roars of those that cannot stop burning in the firewater, becoming so purified.

And when this beverage goes down our throats, we will get free of the evil of our soul and of any charm. Forces of air, earth, sea and fire, to you I make this call: if it's true that you have more power than people, here and now, make the spirits of the friends who are outside, take part with us in this Queimada.

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