Saturday, February 23, 2013

Easter Shawl Project

"...My soul's form bends to the East. There I should see a Sun by rising set, and by that setting endless day beget." - John Donne

As Lent continues and Easter approaches, I've been searching for a dress to wear when singing with my church's choir on Easter Sunday. Sadly, I've met with a disappointing dearth of options, and have settled on a skirt and blouse that are fairly boring together.

What better way to remedy this problem than to knit a new shawl for Easter, right?

Except that this project probably qualifies me as completely mental:

image credit: Susan Pandorf

This is the Evenstar shawl, which I've mentioned in previous posts and actually purchased yarn for, but have never gotten around to starting. No time like the present, right? Especially when you're casting on one month out from when you need to wear it.

Yep, definitely mental.

To be continued...

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Green Chili and Cheese Buttermilk Drop Biscuits

"For whatsoever from one place doth fall, is with the tide unto another brought: for there is nothing lost, that may be found, if sought." - from Edmund Spenser's "Faerie Queene"

This recipe was deliciously simple and quick to whip up and bake in an afternoon. I lifted the biscuit recipe from Cozy Kitchen's Chicken Broccoli Casserole Cobbler (which is an entree I highly recommend), and added some green chili. Bake in a 400 degree F oven for 20-25 minutes.

You should be able to find canned green chili in the Mexican section of the local grocery store. Add as little or as much as you like (I personally believe there's no such thing as too much green chili, but it's not for everyone).


Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Monastery Soup and Mardi Gras

"Suffer us not to mock ourselves with falsehood/ teach us to care, and not to care/ teach us to sit still/ even among these rocks, our peace in his will/ and even among these rocks...suffer me not to be separated/ and let my cry come unto thee." - "Ash Wednesday," T.S. Eliot

 I returned to my apartment and housemates, after a long visit with my family, to find one of them sick with the flu. Also, the area of the country where I now live is unseasonably cold, so everything just seemed to be crying out for a good, healthy pot of soup.

Thankfully, I had just brought this book back with me.

The beautiful array of soup recipes in there will not let you down. For dinner tonight, I settled on "Cherbah," a soup from the January list (it felt like January outside - that counts).

It has a beef stock base, with tomatoes, garlic, mint, pimientos and egg yolk, among other things. As my poor, flu-ridden housemate remarked, "it hits the spot."

As today is Mardi Gras (Fat Tuesday), which marks the beginning of Lent, I decided to fry some sopaipillas for dessert (see my previous post from Sept. 2012 about these beauties). Last time I coated them with sugar, but this time my housemates and I drizzled them with honey. I also put some sliced banana on mine:

Happy Mardi Gras!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Sausage Stuffed Jalapenos

"Just when I think she can't get any better at cooking - she gets better" - my dad, after eating some of these poppers

I hit a home run with this recipe - my dad and brother both love spicy foods, so I knew this one had to make an appearance very soon.

Pablano pepper on left, Jalapeno pepper on right

Jalapeno pepper juice will burn your skin, so wear gloves when cutting and seeding them. Pablano peppers are "cooler" than Jalapeno, but every pepper's "heat index" depends on the individual pepper. Use a melon ball cutter to remove the seeds.

For this recipe, you will need:
  • 1 lbs. ground sausage
  •  8 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (or Parmesan can be used as well)
  • 1 lbs. Jalapenos, halved lengthwise and seeded
  • 1-3 finely chopped green onions
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Evenly brown sausage in a saucepan over medium heat, drain grease. In a mixing bowl, combine cream cheese, cheddar cheese, green onion and sausage. Spoon about one tablespoon of the stuffing into the pepper halves. Arrange the stuffed peppers in a baking dish, place in oven and bake for 20 minutes, until light brown and bubbling.

If you're making these for male relatives/friends, you may want to double the recipe.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Cardigans, Berets and Bible Covers

"Happy the man, and happy he alone, he who can call today his own; he who, secure within, can say 'tomorrow do thy worst, for I have lived today.'" - John Dryden

What with the holidays, a mission trip and the funeral of a loved one, this blog has been sadly neglected. I have been keeping up with knitting and recipe hunting, and should have more time for both in the next few months, so (slightly more) regular posts should be forthcoming, barring any more unforeseen events.

Now for a knitting update.

I recently made myself a lightweight beret called "Rustling Leaves"

 The yarn is Eidos from the Verdant Gryphon (color name "Nichomachean Ethics." Why a lavender/gray yarn should be named after something that is black and white, I don't know). The pattern can be found here.
This is a nice hat for spring or autumn. You'll need to add extra stitches for a head larger than 22 inches around the hatband.

The cabled cardigan is coming along very well:

One of the front panels

the first sleeve

 It is still in progress, and I'm hoping to finish it sometime this month.

Last but not least is this Bible cover:

This was also made with the "Nichomachean Ethics" yarn (as for the moral implications of making a cover for a book that teaches ethics out of a yarn that is wrongly named after ethics, I choose to classify this project as a "grey area." Please don't throw tomatoes). The pattern can be downloaded from

More to come...