Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Babushka Love

A few weeks ago I bought these super-cute books from Typo. I find anything with babushka dolls very hard to resist!

And then a couple of days later I was at our school's Biggest Morning Tea and won a raffle prize! We could choose our prizes, so I chose these stacking Maxwell & Williams Babushka mugs.

Pretty cute, huh?
There's actually a doll on each side of the mugs. I like the way that the bottom mugs still look alright on their own ...

Please excuse the photos, always hard to get the lighting right in winter ...

Friday, June 10, 2011

Bakewell Slice Recipe

Due to popular demand I am posting the recipe of Bakewell Slice (I think the actual recipe that Steve and Laura used, judging by the sugary crumbs stuck between the pages!) This is an Australian recipe so some converting might be necessary for some readers. Our cup measurements are a teensy bit bigger than the US ones and we use grams and celsius not sticks and farenheit! Please ask if you have any questions.

Bakewell Slice
1 cup plain flour
90g butter
1 tblspn caster sugar
1 tblspn water

185 g butter
3/4 cup caster sugar
3 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup ground almonds
3/4 cup plain flour
1/2 cup raspberry jam
1/4 cup flaked almonds

Preheat oven to moderately hot (210degC) Brush a 27 x 18 cm tin with oil or melted butter and line base with baking paper.

Place sifted flour, butter and sugar in a food processor, process for 10 seconds using a pulse action, until mixture is fine and crumbly. Add water and process briefly until mixture comes together.

Turn into prepared tin, pressing evenly over base using lightly floured hands. Bake for 5mins, then remove from oven and allow to cool. Reduce oven to moderate (180degC)

To make topping, beat butter and sugar in a small mixing bowl with electric beaters until light and creamy. Add eggs gradually, beating thoroughly after each addition. Transfer to a large mixing bowl; add ground almonds and flour. Using a wooden spoon, stir until just combined.

Spread pastry base with jam. Spread evenly with topping and sprinkle with flaked almonds.
Bake for 20-25 mins or until lightly golden, cool in tin. Cut into fingers when cold.
Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
(if not eaten long before!)

From the Family Circle Slice Recipes book.

Winter Sunset

After a cold, grey and rainy afternoon

the sun breaks through.

These photos taken just a few minutes ago.

Bakewell Slice Baked Well

Sometimes my husband is too good to me ...

Last Sunday I had a stressful day.

Drive to church.

After church, deliver a meal to another family who needed it. More driving.

Drive home.

Drive back alone to our minister's house for lunch and a meeting.

Too much driving and a few frustrating things happened along the way, too.

When I got home after church I was tense and annoyed, and the day was only half done

and I just wanted to stay home,

rather than drive for another 20 minutes back to where we have church.

But when I finally arrived home again at 4.00pm, Steve and Laura had baked!

They searched through the cookbooks to find something I could eat

(no chocolate ... no dried fruit ....)

and came up with Bakewell Slice!

Now I know from making Bakewell Tart that anything with the name Bakewell

is not the quickest and easiest recipe to make.

They used the food processor and the mixer.

But oh it was so good.

The almonds ... and the raspberry jam ... hmmm ...

It was so nice to sit down at last with a cup of tea and some slice.

And it stayed moist for days.

Not that it lasted that many days around here ...


. . .

Find the recipe here

Linking to Food on Fridays
Click on the broccoli to see more food posts.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Crocheted Aviator Cap, take two.

Just when I thought I could settle down and get on with my cardigan Laura announced on Thursday afternoon ...

"I need a beanie for my Canberra excursion!"

So, what's a mother to do? Hop in the car and drive to KMart for a cheap boring beanie?

Not this crocheting mum.

Out came the Lincraft pattern I used last year, and from some yarn in my stash
I whipped this up,
finishing on Friday afternoon.
Yey for 6.00mm crochet hooks!

(excuse the greenish photo - bad light!)

Laura and I did the plaits together on Saturday afternoon, and it was done!

At one stage Laura feared she would look like she had a tea-cosy on her head, but all that changed when I added the rows of edging in turquoise, aqua and blue.

She was quite happy with the finished result!

and so was I.

It's satisfying to make something we actually need out of what you have at home, isn't it?

This morning we farewelled her in the cold and the dark at the school bus stop,
we could see her happy and chatting in the coach.
Growing up too fast.

But still cute :-)

linking for the first time to

lots of lovely stuff happening over at both those blogs ...

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Winter Evening

Now that winter is officially here ....

Sweet Potato Soup bubbling on the stove ....

Herb bread taking care of itself in the bread maker ...

Sitting by the heater with a ball of wool and a crochet hook making a quick beanie for Laura ...

Clothes drying by the heater too ...

Tchaikowsky's Seranade for Strings playing in the background ...

...and the anticipation of delicious hot soup and warm crusty bread by candlelight in an hour or so ...


Knitting Comfort

Rhonda at Down-to-Earth posted the other day about The Rich Experience of Knitting and that reminded me that I took some photos of my latest knitting project a few days ago and hadn't even uploaded them yet.

This is a cardigan I'm knitting from a Lincraft pattern in their book Urban Knits

Using Lincraft "Surprise" yarn.

I'm allergic to wool so have to stick with acrylic and cotton yarn, which can sometimes be tricky to find in colours that I would actually wear and at a price I can justify. The yarn for this project came in at $25.00, so a reasonably-priced project for me, considering I'm not that experienced in making cardigans or items that actually need to fit!

So far I'm really happy with the quality of this yarn, and my mother-in-law who is a very experienced knitter and spinner was also impressed.

I'm also loving the colour variations as it morphs from one colour to another. Amongst the purples are white, lilac, navy blue and a rich chocolate.

Like Rhonda I also recently bought some Clover bamboo needles and am just loving them.

I've knitted the back and left front so far, and am looking forward to finishing it all in the next few weeks, now that life is calming down a bit.

I used to find knitting very stressful, and struggled with getting the tension right and understanding the pattern and so on, but since knitting lots of coathanger covers for the school fair I find knitting easy and relaxing and it's exciting to have a major knitting project for the first time in years. I love sitting on the sofa with the sun streaming in, or the rain pouring down outside and slow down with some knitting.

What are you knitting at the moment?

(linking to Fiber Arts Friday)