I've almost 2000 followers on pinterest. I find this bizarre and wonder how it has happened. I also wonder why I'm so interested in reaching an arbitrary number
Monday, November 11, 2013
Monday, October 28, 2013
Noodling about on pinterest, I saw this 2 Unexpected Tools for the Sewing Room. I'm not so sure about shoving a screwdriver near a needle, but I've definitely used the thread starter idea. Even better, if you run off your sewing back onto scrap fabric, you end up saving a lot of thread. (Probably better if you're going to sew over such stitching or if you've done a few reverse stitches to fasten off and don't intend to work the end in)
Sunday, October 27, 2013
Because I'm spinning silk. The above was how far I got last night
I'm attempting to spin one ply long draw because I've had a lesson on it and then the other ply short draw so I can see what the difference is. I've no idea what the outcome will be or if it's even advised to do this, but what the heck! I have 104 grammes of fibre and have another 10g to spin for the first ply. My bobbin's almost full - that tussah silk goes a long way
Wednesday, October 23, 2013
Tuesday, October 15, 2013
Not much of one though. I want to commiserate with people who have landed on my blog using either 'naughty knitting book' or 'booty swapper' as the keywords in their search. I don't know what they were looking for, but I'm sure they were severely disappointed with what they found
I thought I'd better get on with it, so I started with a bit of baking and made magic cakes from this pin
There was lots of mess,
and the resulting batter looked more like an enriched milkshake than something that would make a cake. Uncooked, it tasted like a weirdly flavourless, floury milkshake too
The recipe specified an 8" by 8" pan, but there was so much mixture that I filled one of my silicon cake tins too (and yes, I know that is an oxymoron....)
The cakes really puffed up and in hindsight I don't know if swapping their position in the oven 2/3 of the way through was the right thing to do, but after they came out of the oven they deflated but still looked good
I was a bit impatient and didn't wait the 3 hours recommended before taking a slice. Excuse the dark pic - it was raining heavily at this point
It tasted good and had a really interesting combination of fluffy and flabby textures (I'm really selling this to you, I can tell). I had another slice a couple of hours later and it was delicious so I'd recommend following the instructions to wait. As the evening wore on, the flavours and textures blossomed. The downside of course was that the cake got smaller and smaller. This was the last piece
Luckily I had the second cake in the fridge.
a) the whole thing reminded my husband of an egg custard without the pastry
b) it was in a silicon 'tin' that gives a weirdly smooth surface to anything in it
I decided to unmould the second cake and serve it upside down
What a hit - it disappeared in minutes
I will definitely make this again, but next time I'll find a larger and deeper tin to bake it in as I didn't really get much of the middle sloppy custard layer, but did get the slightly cakey top and the gorgeous thick custard base
Wonder what I'll make next?
Thursday, October 10, 2013
So, ready for a huge list of ingredients?
1 large pot of double cream (600ml)
1 454g jar of lemon curd
1 pack of meringue nests (there were 8 in mine)
I suppose you could make your own lemon curd and meringue nests if you're that way inclined
So, whip your cream until it's stiff
Add the lemon curd - all the jar
Roughly crush the meringue nests and fold everything together
You can decide how combined you want the cream and lemon curd - if you want it uniform you could fold those two ingredients together to your liking and then add the meringue, but I like the little blobs and swirls of lemon curd
Either spoon into individual moulds (clean empty yogurt pots are fine) or into a container and freeze overnight
There's no need to stir or whip
You can eat the unfrozen mixture as a fool type dessert, but it might be a bit strong/sweet as the proportions are intended to counter the flavour dulling effect of freezing
Once frozen, this is how it looks
And it scoops out beautifully
Now, confession time - I picked up the smaller pot of cream by mistake so my ice cream is more lemony than you may get - still tastes lovely though
Tuesday, October 08, 2013
However much I love seeing all the pretties, I have a sneaking suspicion that my pinterest could be in danger of becoming an overstuffed but dead space. Kind of like my del.icio.us account - full of lovely things that I don't use - the same could be said of my papercraft stuff in real life - I start to sense a theme here. Magpie time - ooh shiny......
So, I want to issue myself a challenge and invite you all to join in. If you have a pinterest account where lots of great ideas are languishing, within the next month, make something from it or use a tip. Post about it somewhere and link to me / tell me about it in the comments. Feel free to issue this challenge to others and lets see if we can use what we've saved on there.
Instinct wants me to set up a group blog so we can all share, but I'll see if this takes off first
And on that note, I just snapped my glasses
Monday, October 07, 2013
I caught myself having not just one ridiculous thought, but lots. I must have been mentally doodling while playing a game as I realised I'd made up part of a stand up comedy routine . My question is why? It's not as though I'm asked to entertain a crowd of people on even an irregular basis and I have no ambition to do so. I can't see when having such a routine would benefit me. I'm unlikely to be captured by terrorists and forced to put on a show. If I was, I wouldn't want to use that material anyhow. Given that it revolved around a certain sex act, I wouldn't want to give them any ideas.
Ah, the perils of staying up late.
Friday, September 27, 2013
Tonight I was thinking about hobbies and interests. I've cycled through a lot of crafty obsessions over the years: sewing, quilting, mixed media art, rubber stamping, silversmithing, embroidery, crochet..... But the most enduring one is my beloved knitting (and now its close relative, spinning, of course).
I think this is partly due to it's portability; partly the sheer usefulness of the product that follows so much happy activity; partly due to the community of Ravelry and the instant lessons on YouTube but most definitely due to the weekly therapy that is my Thursday knit night in the pub.
We're definitely not the kind of knitting group that non knitters would think of. With indie dyers, knitting designers and artisan crafters amongst us, our day jobs vary as much as our ages - from 20s to 40 plus - as do our lives outside of knitting. No tight perms or pursed lips and minds broad and open are the order of the day when we meet.
We've been a group for almost 4 years and we've survived changes in venue; members joining, leaving and returning; unexpected personal pictures and lots more. There's a core of members who have changed from 'other lovely people who knit' to friends who support each other through good and bad. These are the ones who make me cry - once when one of them unexpectedly returned home but more often through sniggering at something a bit rude if not extremely dirty. There's nowhere else where I experience a cramped diaphragm from laughter on a regular basis and nowhere else where I know I can get a range of viewpoints on any problem, all delivered with love, friendship and a kick up the bum if necessary. Thursday knit nights have become sacrosanct and I wouldn't have it any other way
Thursday, June 06, 2013
Monday, June 03, 2013
I've been a contract accountant for rather a long while now and have fallen into the habit of going directly from one role to another without a break. Good sense financially, but for once I thought a bit wider and decided to be kind to myself by taking a week off. I've hit lucky with the weather, so that in itself makes the week seem like an extra special bonus
So, what to do with the week? I've a day charity shop touring with my lovely friend Jill (and I know exactly where we're going for lunch!) and a day with my hubby. I've got the computer repair man booked and a craft fair to visit with the lovely Elly. I have to squeeze in a visit to Sarah if we can sort out a time. I've got a long list of possible things I might want to do, but have promised myself that I don't have to do any of them unless I want to
Today though, has been busy already. The garden's been a bit neglected as I'm a fair weather gardener, and the weather has been anything but that for rather a long time. Yesterday, inspired by the return of the sun, we went and bought some plants to restock. Now, I don't really know what I'm doing with plants, so I buy what I like and put them where I think they'll look nice. Oddly, my taste currently seems to accidentally be on a yellow/acid green and purple scheme
This morning I was out gardening by 8.30. There was a whole run of shrubs that were lushly overgrown, so out came my favourite loppers and shears....
|Yes, that is a lawn rake on top. This pile was over knee high|
|Planting above the rodent graveyard led to a tense time with the border spade|
So, a short afternoon and then I'm picking up an excited daughter and friend from school to take them to a manga evening in a comic store. Mother love or what!
Friday, May 03, 2013
The smell as it baked was amazing and the end result -a beautiful looking chollah.
The whole family was tortured by the wait until it cooled, but oh my life, it was worth the impulse control. I've always loved this type of bread, but my bake was magnificent both with and without butter. My teen son very seriously informed me that it is the best bread he's EVER eaten. Thank goodness I froze the other half of the dough for a future treat
Sunday, April 14, 2013
My bread book is very insistent that unbleached plain flour (not bread, just plain old plain flour) is used. I wasn't sure whether my wonderful el cheapo Aldi floor was unbleached, so I bought some organic flour from the health food shop. Twice the price for half as much and the results today have been, quite frankly, disappointing. I've made two loaves that even though they were baked in a tin, look more like ciabatta (still taste great though) and have had a disastrous attempt at pitta breads.
I'm going back to Aldi tomorrow, especially as I've since found out that all UK sold flour is unbleached