Kitchen Witch: Onion

(Allium cepa)

Planet: Mars

Element: Fire

Energies: Protection, weight loss


The great city of Chicago was named for the local Indians’ word for the wild onions growing in the area—chicago.

According to ancient Egyptian incantations, onions were included in charms designed to keep potentially harmful ghosts from children.

Celebrants at winter solstice festivals in Egypt wore onions around their necks.

Onions also played a role in the mummification process.

Though it has often been written that the pyramids were built by onion-and garlic-fed slaves, all Egyptians ate onions in those days. Onions, bread, and beer made up the basic ancient Egyptian diet.

In old Rome, the naturalist Pliny wrote that runners should eat onions daily for speed and endurance.

About 1394, an Arab writer recommended onions boiled together with green peas and spiced with cardamom, cinnamon, and ginger to create sexual desire.

Three hundred years later, the English herbalist Gerarde prescribed the use of onions in weight-loss diets; their low caloric content makes them ideal for this. Even if they are well boiled, he states, onions will not lose their “attenuating” quality.

In contemporary Guatemala, men eat onions to retain virility and to procreate children, even into advanced age.

Magical uses:

This sharply scented plant has long been revered and utilized in magical ritual. In general, onions are eaten to boost our protective armour,
which is created by a flow of energy from the body. They can be used in any form whatsoever for this purpose; the sharper the taste, the more effective the onion will be. Onions have long been kept in the kitchen, halved, to absorb
evil. Or, as Gerarde recommended, eat onions daily as part of a weight-loss plan