Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Knitty Bits

I do love browsing Etsy. I don't get as much time to do it as I'd like, but I had a lovely mooch through the stores last night, looking for gifts for knitters. This is the Treasury I made:

Just click on the photos and you they should magically whisk you to the page they are sold on! (how techno am I getting?!)
This mug from Kelly Connor Designs made me giggle.

I love these knitting needle bracelets from Yellow Bear Wares.
I secretly feel I ought to wear a cape and mask while knitting, like the hero girl in Jam Fancy's print.

And Tangerine 8's badge is spot on ~ what knitter doesn't wish they had a Tardis to store their stash in! 

I hope you enjoyed these knitty treats.

Saturday, 16 February 2013

Sneaky Peek

It's been so long since I've made something new for the shop. That's partly down to the chaotic events of the past few months, and partly down to my flighty, never-finishes-anything nature.
Well, finally, I've finished something.
One of the many new designs I've been working on recently is some vintage-style luggage label keyrings.


Made from plain or chai-stained calico, and decorated with vintage images, fabrics and trims, these tags are a perfect way to add a shabby chic touch to your keys. Or why not do as I plan to do and add one to your suitcase strap ~ it certainly makes your case easier to spot amongst the others on the carousel!

These will be listed in my Etsy shop tomorrow, as soon as I can get some decent photos!

Thursday, 14 February 2013

Souper Douper!

I don't use my slow cooker often enough. As a working single Mum, I really need to take advantage of this fabulous piece of kit. There is nothing cosier than coming in from work on a chilly day to the satisfying fragrance of a ready-cooked meal waiting for you.

Today's treat was Parsnip and Apple soup.


10oz Parsnips (3 med)
4oz Apples (1 eating apple)
6oz Onions (3 small)
1 litre chicken or veg stock (I used 3 stock cubes)

Peel and dice the onion. Peel and chop the parsnips into roughly 1cm chunks. Peel, core and chop the apple into roughly 1cm chunks.
Chuck the whole lot in your slow cooker, top with about 1 litre of stock, and cook on low for however long you're at work. Mine was on for 8 hours, but 5 or 6 would probably be enough.
Blend. Serve with a fresh grinding of pepper.

This is a delicious and light soup (80 calories per serving!!!) and because you're not sweating the onions in butter or oil it's almost fat-free! You can find it on my fitness pal if you're interested. Although I am trying to diet, I teamed ours up with a toasted cheese sandwich, cut into hearts in honour of St Valentine :)

This is the first time I tried soup in my slow cooker. I was a bit worried it might be too runny as you get very little evaporation, but it turned out fine. It took about 10 minutes to prepare which is perfect when you're busy. I got 4 portions from this batch too, so 2 go in the freezer for another day.

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Pancake Day

Today is Pancake Day!

One of the traditions that normally go with Pancake Day is the pancake race, where people race whilst tossing their pancakes. In our house we have a race, but it's a different kind of race ~ to see if I can cook them faster than my son can eat them, so I actually get to eat a couple myself! This year I got 3, plus this little oddity:

Pancakes are easy peasy lemon squeezy to make, you really don't need to buy a batter mix! Here is my recipe:

1 egg
4oz plain flour
semi-skimmed milk
pinch salt
oil for frying

Crack your egg into a jug and make up to 1/4 pint with cold water, then up to 1/2 pint with milk. Add the flour (you don't even need to sift it!) and salt then beat well. I usually allow my batter to stand for a while, but there's some debate whether you actually need to bother so if you are to eager to get flipping, go for it!
Heat a tiny bit of oil in a small pan, you just need enough to stop the pancake from sticking, a few drops should do it. You want the pan to be pretty hot but not crazy hot. Pour a little batter into the pan and swirl it around to coat the base. Leave it to cook for a minute or two then flip and cook the other side.

Hey Presto ~ a pancake! This recipe made about 9 six inch pancakes, and they're only about 55 calories each before you add toppings. (search for Cheery Chicken Pancakes on my fitness pal)

Top it with whatever you like, I prefer the traditional sugar and lemon, my son likes nutella and banana. What are your favourite toppings?