Soupy Fall Day

Y’all might want to sit down for this one.

I finished a pair of socks.

I know, shocking.  A finished object.  What’s more, I immediately cast on another pair of socks that’s been waiting in the wings for a few YEARS.

If you can believe it – these are from the same ball of yarn.  This is just the way it knitted out.  Crazy.  I wasn’t sure I was okay with the difference at first, but honestly, a pair of hand knit wool socks is a pair of hand knit wool socks.  They will be well appreciated in my boots come winter.

They also fit quite comfortably inside my new orthopedic shoes.  (Orthaheel – I love them!)

The pattern is Grumperina’s Jaywalkers (this is my 4th pair I’ve knit – I know the pattern so well now that they are easier to whip out).  The yarn is Schoppel Wolle (Zauberball, I think) that I picked up at Maryland Sheep & Wool last year.

It’s been awful and dark and rainy and very windy (we are under a tornado watch until 7 tonight) and thick out  so the kids are snuggled on the couch watching movies and I am working on the next pair of socks.  On the stove we’ve got some Butternut Squash and Apple Soup bubbling for dinner.  This is my favorite go – to fall dinner because it’s easy, delicious and terribly in season.  You can find the original tutorial I posted for it a few years back  HERE.

Make yourself a big pot (it’s gluten – free!!)  and serve with a salad or some hot sweet potato rolls.

Go! What are you waiting for???

Friday Knitting

We’ve gotten much of the work we needed to get done this week for school completed already (just some math and reading to do later) so I am taking some time to spend on knitting.  I’ve got a case of that “Finishup-itis” that seems to be going around the Knitting Blogosphere of late and I am trying to get Oona’s Drive Thru cardigan done.  I’ve got the body and one sleeve finished.  The second sleeve has been cast – on and then there’s just the yoke and finishing, so I am feeling like I am in the home stretch.

I also cast on some super yummy Juniper Moon Farm Worsted Weight in a colorway I cannot remember (Aegean Sea?  Storm Cloud?  Dunno) using Brooklyn Tweed’s Guernsey Wrap pattern.  It is going to to be AMAZING.  The pattern is gorgeous and the color of this wool is just perfect.

The knitting has been a balm for my mind and soul as we deal with a lot of things around here, both good and bad.  There’s much going on, and there will be a few changes in the coming weeks.  You’ll have to stay tuned to see how that unfolds.

I also should admit I’ve become rather obsessed with the King Arthur Flour website.  I want to try every recipe and order all of the neat gadgets and ingredients that look oh – so – fun to bake with.  I haven’t given in to the impulse much, but I did do something that made sense.  I bought a 25 lb.bag of flour and a bucket for it.  This winds up being way cheaper than buying the 5 lb. bags at the grocery store like I’ve been doing, since I go through so much of it.  I  am also thinking about ordering up some of their gluten – free fare, since so many of my friends are living gluten – free these days.

That’s a big – ass bag o’ flour!

I wonder how long it will last in this house???

Snow – Day Cookies

Today the public schools all were closed for an expected snowstorm.  Which never materialized.  We had “Winter Weather Advisories”and whatnot in effect today but all we got were about 15 minutes worth of flurries followed by fog and some freezing drizzle.  Very disappointing.  And good enough reason to not cancel home school.  If we had gotten a lot of fun snow I may have relented in the name of outside play, but in this case….no.  I did however keep the fireplace on all day and make 2 types of cookies to enjoy with hot cocoa.

The first ones were Bakerella’s Cowgirl Cookies. Think chocolate – chip cookies with m&m’s.  Tres yummy, and very easy.  I also love that she uses melted butter, much like America’s Test Kitchen uses for their chocolate – chip cookies.  This keeps the cookie centers moist but you don’t get that all – spread – out – flatness that you get from the Tollhouse recipe.

As a side note, I made this mix once before as  Gluten – free for a dear friend who cannot have wheat products.  I used some of King Arthur flour’s gluten – free flour in place of the all – purpose, and since I could not find any oats that were not reliably free of cross – contamination from wheat I simply replaced them with the same amount of GF flour.  They came out great!

Neve read two chapters of Laura Ingalls Wilder’s On the Banks of Plum Creek out loud while I baked them up today.  Voila.  School and cookies at the same time.

Then this evening after Emily and I finished talking about flower parts and reproduction I made Palmiers, a cookie also often referred to as Elephant Ears.

These are likewise incredibly easy to make, an very yummy.  They are especially good with afternoon coffee.

I used Ina Garten’s recipe from Food Network, which you can find here.

Basically, you roll out some Pepperidge Farm frozen puff pastry (thawed!) on a surface covered (and I do mean covered) with sugar and a tad of kosher salt.  The pastry itself also gets covered liberally with sugar, then folded up like a book into 6 layers and sliced in small sections to be baked.

The sugar caramelizes nicely while the puff pastry expands and “puffs” out.

When complete they are the perfect combination of sweet and chewy/crunchy.  They take no time at all, which is, incidentally, about how long they last.