Sunday, 26 April 2009

Salad days

Celeriac is one of my favourite vegetables but there aren't too many recipes for it. I usually make it into a mash. The weather's been lovely today so I concocted this salad.

1 whole celeriac
The juice and zest of one lemon
1 teaspoon of capers
1/4 teaspoon wholegrain mustard
3 slices mature goats cheese

Peel and grate the celeriac and mix with the lemon juice
Stir in the rest of the ingredients, crumbling the goats cheese.
Eat and enjoy.



I also made a beetroot salad. I met up with some friends last night for cocktails and tried an unusual beetroot and passion fruit one which was delicious. It was quite strange tasting beetroot and passion fruit together but it worked.

I made my salad by mixing grated beetroot, finely sliced red onions, lemon juice and zest and a hint of chilli but something was lacking. I would have added a splash of vodka but the only vodka we have left is mixed with jelly, a leftover from our Halloween party. I improvised and used Ricard instead. At first the Ricard overpowered everything else but I let the mix sit for an hour and it mellowed very nicely.



Making salads also gave me the opportunity to use my Tiki salad servers which my friend Caroline in New Zealand sent to me. Kitsch, cultural and useful. Perfect.

Saturday, 25 April 2009

Sums up my life

I recently discovered Garfield minus Garfield.

Here's the blurb from the website.

"Garfield Minus Garfield is a site dedicated to removing Garfield from the Garfield comic strips in order to reveal the existential angst of a certain young Mr. Jon Arbuckle. It is a journey deep into the mind of an isolated young everyman as he fights a losing battle against loneliness and depression in a quiet American suburb."




This looks horribly familiar.

Friday, 24 April 2009

Supreme Champion

I have a fascination with agricultural shows. Especially when they combine rare British breeds and livestock contests. For some reason photos like this make me smile.



My parents live on the northern edge of the Yorkshire Dales and their local paper is full of these sorts of things. Maybe I find it a nice escape from London life, where our local free paper is full of tales of murder and woe.

Not that London life is all bad. I occasionally fantasise about living in the sticks, breathing the fresh air, growing my own food, wildlife surrounding us in a Disneyesque fashion.

Then I step out of my front door and am bombarded with people from all echelons of society and all four corners of the globe. Within a 5 minute walk I have restaurants covering South America, Italy, Kurdistan, Thailand, Turkey, Japan, a lovely yarn shop, quirky boutiques, bus links, tube stops, old Georgian squares, including one where George Orwell used to live, an Italian Futurist museum. I could go on.

If only I could have all this and a bigger garden, where I could rear and shear Wensleydale Longwools and Alpacas.

Thursday, 23 April 2009

Happy St Georges Day

Wednesday, 22 April 2009

El Misti Wanida

I've finished my Wanida socks. Despite my skinny feet I knit these at full volume (64 stitches, instead of my usual 48) and they fit perfectly, unlike other Cookie A patterns which are too wide for me.

I like them. I only did one repeat of the leg pattern as I wanted some short socks for my short legs. I made the cuff slightly longer to compensate for this.



I tinkered with the second sock and reversed the pattern for some subtle mirroring.

Here's how I did it.

You'll need Sock Innovation by Cookie A which I thoroughly recommend if you love sock knitting.

Cuff - knit as in pattern.

Leg - begin chart on round 17, finishing on row 16. For row 16 knit seven of the stitches in the grey shaded area on the chart, leaving one stitch. Move the last unknit stitch on to the next needle for top of foot.

Heel - work the previous knit stitches as in pattern.

Top of foot. I rewrote the chart in reverse. If you're cleverer than me just knit the chart backwards, changing ssks to k2togs and vice versa.

Toes, knit as in pattern.

Hope this makes sense.

Right, what shall I knit next?

Monday, 20 April 2009

More sock crack

I'm on my second pattern from Cookie A's Sock Innovation book.



Pattern:Wanida
Needles: 2.25mm
Yarn: Yet more Misti Alpaca in colourway Miriam.

I should be finishing bigger projects but socks are too much fun.

Sunday, 19 April 2009

Mmmmmmm



Home made beetroot soup with a sliver of ash preserved goats cheese and some Hoxton Rye bread.

It would have looked prettier if I could have been bothered to pick a sprig of mint from the garden for a garnish, but it was too tempting to sit down and eat.

Friday, 17 April 2009

You know you knit too much when...

... you get information about your state pension through the post and rather than checking to see if you'll be destitute in your dotage you admire the cabled tank top on the leaflet and rush to Ravelry to look for similar patterns.

Wednesday, 15 April 2009

Design it, knit it, wear it!

I found this beauty in a charity shop on my way home from Loop. What will my next project be? A cool hat and scarf? Funky leg warmers? A lace shawl? I haven't opened the box yet so I'm not sure if the fuzzy pink and purple yarn is still in the kit, I'm hoping it isn't. My plan, if I can get the thing working is see if I can make some simple dolls and toys for charities who give knitted toys to orphaned kids in African countries.



As for Loop, my equivalent of a crack den, well, I had a splurge. I figured I don't smoke, I wear what I make for myself and I need more socks. I finally got an op date so will need hand knit socks post op as they don't dig in to swollen tissue.

Here's the latest addition to my stash, got clean needles too. OK, enough with the drug analogies, The Wire is on every night and I think it's seeping into my consciousness.



Check out the Zauberballs from Schoppel Wolle, I can't wait to get started with these. There's yet more Misti Alpaca sock yarn, some Scottish 4ply from Rennies, and some new Knit Pro needle tips for my interchangable cable needle set. Sorted!

Monday, 13 April 2009

Oh yah!

Our train home for Yorkshire was heaving, what with it being Easter weekend and our train services overcrowded. Luckily we managed to get a seat and hang on to it despite it being reserved although poor Mr G to sit on the arm rest from York onwards.

I got chatting to a couple of students from the USA who had to sit on the floor all the way from York to London. When I asked them where they were from they said "Minnesota", to which I replied, "Where Fargo is set?", to which they replied "Oh, yah", just like the characters in Fargo do. I smiled. A lot.

Tuesday, 7 April 2009

Multi-tasking



Knitting a tricky part of Cookie A's Kai Mei pattern, eating pickles and watching The Wire (season 1 - please don't leave me any spoilers) is harder than it seems.

Also taking photos of socks in progress when one leg is out of action is tricky. I annoyingly managed to snap one of my 2.25mm Britany DPNS while taking this photo. Doh.

Monday, 6 April 2009

Happy Sock Knitting


2009 may be my Year of the Sock.

Sunday, 5 April 2009

Knitting Rehab, Biscuits and Cookie A.

The healing powers of knitting are severely underestimated. After 8 weeks being stuck in the flat, only able to hobble a couple of hundred meters at most, the lure of Cookie A's book launch at Loop was the incentive I needed to try walking further without my leg brace.

Cookie A, for you non-knitters out there, is a sock designer who makes beautiful and sometimes quirky patters. I've made two of her patterns already, pomatomus and monkey which were both fun to knit.

She's got a new book out which as well as including patterns also has good tips on how to design socks, which is something I'm just starting out on. Cookie and her husband were both lovely and friendly and happy to share tips for sock designing, pose for fan photos and sign books.



I'm just so happy to have made it out of the flat for something which isn't a hospital appointment. And there were biscuits. Yay.

I'm going to put my leg up, ice it, and work out which socks to knit next, or maybe design my own......watch this space.