a busy domestic blog of knitting, sewing and all kinds of needlecrafts, cooking my garden produce and preserving it

Sunday, 18 May 2014

Free lunch - 18th May

Another week revolving around salads - sometimes there was cabbage or lettuce to be had but mainly I'm relying on spinach which fortunately is cropping really well. Starting to get more new season radishes and I'm using up small leeks as spring onions - which works rather well.
Starting to long for the first tomatoes and cucumber though....

Friday, 16 May 2014

Nearly done...

 My knitting is coming along at last - it's going to be too warm to wear it by the time it's finished...but there'll always be next winter!
I'm not knitting this in the 'normal' order as given on patterns. Having completed back and fronts, I wanted to do the front and neck ribbing so that I know how much wool is left for the sleeves. I've got 4 balls so should have enough but some of them have been rather chewed by moths so there are lots of short useless lengths of yarn - this is why I shouldn't store wool for 10 years before knitting it up!
Anyway, here are the results so far with a close up of the cable pattern. The sleeves should be quick and easy, as they're to be plain stocking stitch (it'll also save on yarn) - all I have to do is find the pattern....

Monday, 12 May 2014

Willow weaving

I'm not sure if this post belongs here or in the gardening section - so I might put it in both.
I've often seen these sort of willow frames for sale in garden centres but as I have a pussy-willow tree in need of cutting back, I decided to try my hand at making my own.

The uprights and some of the circular pieces had been cut last year and dried out over winter. This turned out to be fine for the straight pieces but not for those I wanted to bend.
So, with some gentle easing, I curved them into a circle and left them tied up to 'set' in that position.
When I came to work them among the uprights, they still popped out of shape so, to hold them where I wanted them to go, I cut some fresh willow and bound them together. The dried hoops kept everything in vaguely the right shape and the fresh bendy pieces held everything together. Success!!

Now drying more hoops for a second wigwam. 

Free lunch - week 15

A little more choice of veg this week sees a slightly more interesting lunch menu-
Monday - Bank holiday picnic lunch with chutney and spinach.

Tuesday - desperately trying to ring the changes here with my standard 'chutney and spinach' base added to a wrap instead of bread.

Wednesday - coleslaw salad - cabbage, radishes,leeks pretending to be spring onions and some mustard salad leaves

Thursday - cold and wet so time for soup. Using up more leeks with potatoes
Friday - back to salad but not as boring as it seems for sprinkled on top are the first of this year's basil leaves

Saturday and Sunday descended into the quick and easy - chutney and spinach sandwiches again

Sunday Baking

It's been acold miserable day,so what better way to warm things up than by baking, especially as I have spare rhubarb from the allotment to use up?
I had to make two cakes as not everyone here loves rhubarb - both start, in the same mixing bowl, as a basic muffin mixture, using light olive oil though instead of sunflower, flavoured with vanilla and lemon essences. Then I pour a third of the batter into a small cake tin and add rhubarb and oats to the remaining mixture fora slightly larger cake.

Wednesday, 7 May 2014

Free lunch - week 14

The whole 'free lunch' idea is getting very dull at the moment - it's too warm for cooked lunches and I don't have enough salad veg to give variety. Too many days I'm just trying to ring the changes on spinach, beetroot and salad leaves though this week did see the addition of cabbage for coleslaw. I'm starting to think I need to think outside the box before I abandon this project through boredom.