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Knitted skeleton

8 Mar

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Easiest Homemade Ice Cream

1 Jan

In a last ditch effort to make something special for New Year’s Eve, I turned to a Nigella Lawson’s recipe, No Churn Margarita Ice Cream. Of course, I didn’t have every ingredient. Instead, I mixed half-and-half (instead of whipped heavy cream), lime juice, powdered sugar, and rum (instead of tequila and cointreau) in a plastic, lidded container.  I shook the container to introduce some air bubbles (cheater way of whipping or churning) and stuck it in the freezer. Over the next few hours, I shook it several times and allowed it to freeze.

A little before midnight, after approximately 5.5 hours of freezing, we had a zingy, somewhat silky ice cream version of the original daiquiri. The ice cream had fairly large ice crystals, so it wasn’t the smoothest, but it certainly was the easiest homemade ice cream.

Knitting Resource: Weaving in Ends by Purl Bee

3 Aug

This blog post on the Purl Bee is a fantastic resource on the many, many different ways to weave in your ends on knitted pieces. The author makes the excellent point that there is no one right way to do this, but different methods may be better for different pieces.

Thanks to Mette on Etsy Knitters for posting this resource and all her other great links.

 

Knitted Baby Hats

25 Jul

One of my very favorite people, my cousin Jenn, is having a baby girl. After negotiating with my Mom about who was going to knit which cute hats, I went to buy yarn. I didn’t find the orange I wanted for a pumpkin hat, which would have been perfect for a late September baby. Instead, I bought yellow and pink baby acrylic yarn and began experimenting. This is what I learned: 1. tiny hats need tiny stripes, 2. fold over brims don’t work (again, it’s an issue of scale).  Here is my final striped hat.

Striped baby hat

I also made an all pink hat, then knitted bunny ears and sewed them on (pattern below).

Bunny baby hat

Pattern for baby hat:

Cast on 48 stitches (16 on 3 needles to knit in the round), if gauge is 4.5 stitches to the inch. I used 48 stitches on size 6 needles.

Knit 4, Purl 4 for half an inch

Knit in the round until the entire piece measures four inches in length.

To decrease: Row 1, knit 2 together. Row 2, purl. Row 3, knit 2 together. Row 4, purl. Trim the yarn leaving about 6 inches of extra slack. Thread the yarn tail with a tapestry needle, then thread all of the remaining stitches through the needle. Tighten and put the needle through the top of the hat. On the inside of the hat, tie off the yarn securely.

To make bunny ears: With gray yarn, cast on 4 stitches.

Knit six rows in stockinette stitch. Increase one by knitting through in the back loop on the first stitch and knit six more rows in stockinette. Repeat this once more.

Decrease one by knitting two together on the first stitch. Knit six rows in stockinette stitch. Repeat once.

Decrease one by knitting two together on the first stitch. Knit four rows in stockinette stitch. Repeat twice. Knit the last two stitches together and tie off.

Pick up three stitches from the original four cast on. With the pink yarn, knit six rows in stockinette stitch. At the beginning and end of every pink row, hook the edge of the gray and knit or purl the pink and gray stitches together. This will create the effect of pink “inner ear” and gray “outer ear” in one relatively seamless ear.

Increase one by knitting through in the back loop on the first stitch and knit six more rows in stockinette. Repeat this once more.

Decrease one by knitting two together on the first stitch. Knit six rows in stockinette stitch. Repeat once.

Decrease one by knitting two together on the first stitch. Knit four rows in stockinette stitch. Repeat once. Knit the last two stitches together and tie off. Use a tapestry needle to tuck the yarn ends into the inside of the ear. Sew the ends of the ear to the hat with pink yarn.

Baby hats!

Keep Savannah Quirky

15 Jul

This morning Savannah was even more atmospheric than usual. The clouds hung as low and gray as the Spanish moss; the sidewalks were strewn with tiny white flower petals released during the storms last night. But what I wanted to share is the quirkier side of Savannah. This is a house I pass on my way to work….

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Butterbean Pesto Pasta

9 Jul

Fresh pesto is always worth making and is quite easy. Pesto can be made with many combinations of herbs, nuts, cheese, and lemon juice or vinegar. The classic Genovese pesto is basil pesto: masses of fresh basil, lemon juice, garlic, Parmesan cheese, olive oil, salt, pepper, and (optional) pine nuts crushed together in a mortar and pestle or food processor.

I mixed my homemade pesto with whole wheat pasta shells and fresh butterbeans from the Farmer’s market: summer and freshness embodied (and excellent with a Riesling). Enjoy!

Fresh Butterbean Pesto Pasta

Artists Guerra de la Paz- Treasure from Trash

8 Jul

I have always loved found-object art for its social commentary and eco-friendliness. Two Cuban-born artists, Alain Guerra and Neraldo de la Paz, collaborate as Guerra de la Paz. These artists use found objects and trash to create amazing sculptures.

nuts! gnats!

29 Jun

We’ve all done it. Forgot to take out the trash, or had a tomato go bad sitting on the counter, and before you know it, your kitchen has gnats. They are irritating and difficult to get rid of. However, a friend showed me a great trick. Leave an open, empty wine bottle on the counter, and the gnats fly in and get stuck like environmentally friendly flypaper. Then just rinse and recycle the bottle! Thanks for the tip, Jen!

Update!

The Curbly blog recently published a DIY on the same idea using beer, but it’s more reusable.

Last of the Strawberry Mojito-Daquiri

6 Jun

After a rough day, I decided to make strawberry sorbet. These are the very last strawberries of the season, and I had de-stemmed, cut, and frozen them yesterday. Into my food processor went one shot of spiced rum, half a shot of lime juice, generous amount of mint leaves, and a heaping tablespoon of sugar. I microwaved the strawberries for about a minute to loosen them from the container and added them to the processor.
This was my mistake that transformed my sorbet into a daquiri. I have made sorbet before with blueberries, and it blended up well with only a small squirt of lime or lemon juice. I had a little too much liquid in this batch. But it made a fabulous daquiri the tasted like a strawberry mojito! Enjoy!

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Pickle Salad

14 May

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This salad is very similar to a summer salad my Mom makes. I start by chopping some onion (we have vidalias local and in season now). Cover the onions in vinegar (any type will do) and let them sit. Next I prepped the green beans by trimming the ends and cutting them into bite size pieces. While I steamed the beans, I chopped the cucumber. Once the green beans were cooked and cooled, I drained and rinsed the onions. The vinegar soak helps to deflame the onions, so they don’t overwhelm the dish.
Combine all of the veggies and cover with plenty of  balsamic and red wine vinegar, salt, and roughly cracked black pepper. Add a little bit of olive oil and rosemary, and stir in oregano if you wish.
The salad is more pickled veg than veggies with vinagrette, so don’t skimp in the salt. Also this means the salad will need to sit in the frig for at least an hour. The original was just cucs and onions, but I added the green beans for extra nutrition. I love this as a summer salad because it is so refreshing and tangy. Enjoy!

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