Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Everybody's talking about it

My family went to see Black Panther. If I'd known about this wrap, I surely would have gone, too!

Just a note here, these are absolutely not my photos!

The designer for the movie posted on twitter about the yarns she used. Four different ones. And I hear it is just a rectangle, with different textures here and there.

Well, I have a load of greenish Koigu that I was wondering what to do with.

This one, this is my photo!

And I have a shelf or two of books with patterns for wraps, shawls, ponchos, dusters, oversized things with or without sleeves... I got this.

Monday, February 26, 2018

Muffin Monday: Mom K's bran

As predicted, I had to find a recipe that needed buttermilk for this week's muffins. I got my little muffin book and found the one closest to the beginning: Mom K's Bran. It's not online anywhere, but it's a bit cute, so I'll just give it to you here.

Let your young cook try this recipe... so quick and easy... just one of each ingredient.

1 tbsp shortening
1 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 cup natural bran
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 pinch salt
1 cup raisins
1 cup sour milk or buttermilk

Cream shortening, sugar and egg in a large bowl. 
Combine dry ingredients.
Sift in dry ingredients alternately with buttermilk.
Add raisins and stir until moistened.
Fill muffin cups and bake at 450º F for 12-15 minutes. 

It's a pretty basic bran muffin, good for breakfast or a snack any time. You don't need to add the whole cup of sugar if you don't want, and you can, of course, use Craisins or even chocolate chips in place of raisins. I added a bit of vanilla, and a shake of cinnamon wouldn't be crazy.

Now the Olympics are over; I'm just watching a replay of the ice skating gala as I type this. I got my knitting medal and am ready to move on to some new, or maybe old, knitting.

More on that next time!

Saturday, February 24, 2018

Ravellenic Games

I finished my Namorita shawl Friday night, scoring myself a gold medal in Shawl Skating in the Ravellenic Games, which I still think of as the Knitting Olympics.

This pattern was given to me by someone in a charity knitting group on Ravelry, on the understanding that the finished product would go to charity. Since I need such a thing like the old hole in the head, I am happy to do that.

As you can see, I ran out of my main yarn! The pattern says it needs 272 meters of laceweight yarn; I used thicker fingering and used more than 366 meters! Luckily, yarn is something we have around here, so I managed.

It's hardly what I would call a shawl, more of a shaped scarf. The depth is not much more than a foot at the widest point. The yarn, Hedgehog Fibres Skinny Singles, is soft and warm and super nice. Also cost a wee fortune, but what the heck.

I've always been intrigued by this colourway, Typewriter. I think a plain garment in it would look great, with little, black, word-like splodges here and there.

There are still the Parallenic Games in March, so I must find a project for then! And soon, more muffins!

Monday, February 19, 2018

Muffin Monday: Bacon Cheddar Corn

This week's recipe comes again from my Cooking Light baking book, and is one that I have always passed over. Bacon in a muffin? Jalapeño?

The cornmeal adds that mealy texture, which usually I don't go for. The bacon could have been crisper, but I only had turkey bacon, not actual pork bacon, which I am sure would have been perfect. The jalapeño could have been cut more finely, the cheese could have been sharper. But, all in all, pretty good! Perfect with a taco salad or chilli.

There are a couple more recipes in this book, and then on to the main event, I think! But I have to prioritize, and maybe whip up some more muffins quickly before my buttermilk goes off. And I do have to make sure to use the cornmeal, now I have it! Yes, I might sneak in another batch this week.

Thursday, February 15, 2018

A bit of an update

I went out for lunch the other day and got a nice fortune in my cookie:

I am hoping my flair for the creative tells me what to do with this yarn! I bought it to make this, but really I want a cardigan.

I have 6 greens, 2 skeins of each, the leftovers from Elaine's hood, and a bunch of scraps.

Ideas are percolating and marinating; I can't start till I finish a few things. First up is my Ravellenic Games project, the Namorita shawl.

Whoo-hoo, it still is a scrumpled mess. If you stretch it out in tiny segments, you can see that it will be quite fancy when finally off the needles.

Now I am doing short rows (I've done 16 of 83) to make the curve. I think it will be nice, and I think I can get it done by the end of the Olympics, February 25, I believe.

I hope everyone is enjoying their own flair for the creative!

Monday, February 12, 2018

Muffin Monday: Chocolate chocolate chip

Muffin = healthy snack, right? Chocolate muffin... hmm.

Usually if we need a chocolate muffin, which we often do, I make Choco-Wheat Germ, my favourite recipe from that favourite muffin book of mine, but this recipe, Chocolate-Chocolate Chip, is from a Cooking Light baking magazine, and has none of that good-for-you wheat germ. It also has less sugar and more cocoa. It does have mini choc chips -- half a cup of minis means way more chips for the same amount of chocolate! So, totally decadent, but not as sweet.

Classically misshapen muffins! I thought they looked like the Joy of Cooking illustration showing the perils of over-mixing, but while searching for a good picture online, I discovered it might be because I used my convection fan instead of cooking them "still." There's nothing wrong with them really, but perhaps I will not use convection for muffins in the future.

They are fine, but I think my love for the Choco-Wheat Germ muffin holds strong. I guess a side-by-side taste test might be in order!

Friday, February 09, 2018

Eye Candy Friday

Once upon a time I bought myself some cheap and cheerful tulips.

And they got old and dry and fell to bits. 

The end.

Thursday, February 08, 2018

Three on Thursday

I told you once before about the hat pattern I received from someone on Ravelry. I also got two other patterns from the same source. So that makes three, perfect for Three Things on Thursday.

  1. The hat. I told you all about it here. I might just knit it again sometime. I have a ton of that green wool! 
  2. The scarf. I have finally decided to make it for the Ravellenic Games, or what I always think of as the Knitting Olympics, so this weekend I should be able to show you a picture or two. I am using Hedgehog Fibres in the colourway known as Typewriter, white with black speckles. Should be good. 
  3. The cowl. I thought of doing this for the games, but somehow it just didn't grab me. I'll get to it! There are lots of little things I like about the pattern, but also, it seems, lots of little things that I don't like. 

Yarn, soon to be a shawl, scarf, neck-wrap thing. 

See other Three on Thursday posts here

Monday, February 05, 2018

Muffin Monday: Spiced Blueberry

This week's Muffin Monday recipe comes from longtime favourite, Cooking Light. I tore this recipe out of the magazine to keep, but I can't remember if I've made it before. Perhaps, long ago, since it's from 2004!

Spiced blueberry muffins, with fresh blueberries and cream cheese in the batter! I got 18 out of the recipe.

The batter is very stiff, and as you can see, the blueberries do not all sink to the bottom. The cinnamon and nutmeg and the tanginess from the cheese, all delicious.

You cook them at 425ºF. They got quite brown here and there, but they are not overcooked. They are quite light and fluffy, in fact!

My taste-tester's initial reaction: Huh, it's a blueberry muffin.
However, she ate three throughout the evening, so I guess she liked them!

Saturday, February 03, 2018

Surf Hoodie done

I started this sweater back in the fall, and it is now done

and being worn.

You can tell by the name, Surf Hoodie, that it is meant to have a hood, but we decided against that. It is also supposed to have a gaping neckline, but we decided against that, too! Basically, just a sweater, with those cool, overlong sleeves.

When I knit four- or six-row stripes, I carry the unused yarn up the side, but for some hare-brained reason, this time I cut it. The stripes are 18 rows, which is quite a way to carry the yarn, but, oh, those ends! It took me hours to sort all those ends. Much grumbling, I can tell you.

Now I am amusing myself with a square or two, but I'm not finding them actually very amusing and will look out another "real" project soon.

Thursday, February 01, 2018

Finally February

Here we are, a new month, no longer just the beginning of 2018.

What shall I do in February?

  1. The Ravellenic Games, formerly known as the Knitting Olympics. I have an official plan and an unofficial plan. The official one is that I will knit a bucketload of dishrags and such with all this cotton yarn. You'd think in 16 days I could knit 8 dishcloths? We shall see. My unofficial plan is that I will knit another bucketload of squares for blankets for refugees. You'd think that in 16 days... Since these are unofficial -- I won't get a little .pdf medal for the squares -- I've cheated and already started one. So I actually have 25 days! 
  2. I am this close to finishing Elaine's pullover. Just the neckband and a million ends to sew in. 
  3. Perhaps the end of February will see me casting on some lace when I'm done with all those squares.