25 July 2012


It occurred to me recently, that, when baking, it might be more cost-effective to make the butter, rather than buying unsalted. So I bought a carton of cream (less than a block of unsalted butter), brought it home, and went to work.

The recipe I found online suggested using a mixer with a whisk attachment, rather than putting it in a jar and shaking. This was absurdly easy--I got to sit at the table and browse Craftster while the mixer did the work. Then I strained it, rinsed it, squeezed it out, and there it is. Butter.

I think we might have tried this when I was a kid, making butter at home in a jar as one of our homeschooling adventures. I don't remember for sure, though. I do remember learning to make a bread with a sponge and homemade ice cream. At any rate, I now have unsalted butter and buttermilk. From not quite a litre of cream (since some of it got used earlier), I got approximately 300 g (10 oz) of butter and 2 cups of buttermilk. Time to make buttermilk cookies, since I promised the husband I'd bake something.

04 July 2012

sewing to prevent yarn over-saturation

Tomorrow (or rather, today) is the day I start making the rounds of the yarn shops for Yarn Harvest. I'm really excited about this, but definitely considering that I may be quite, quite sick of yarn by the end of July. So, to stave off the yarn overdosages, I've been doing some sewing. When I get proper pictures done, I'll try to post them up here, but it's hard to really show off a dress unless you're wearing it (or have a dress model, which I don't possess).

Mostly I've been working with McCall's patterns, which are easy to follow. Next week I'm branching out to making an outfit without a proper pattern. We're planning on going to the BC Renaissance Festival in a couple weeks, and I want to dress up. So I'm going for a simple medieval-style outfit. I'm not terribly comfortable with the whole concept of the general "wench" ensemble, so mine is based off of something earlier than the Renaissance, more medieval. It's also simpler to put together; I don't have to figure out eyelets for a corset-top thing (whatever those are called). It's just a chemise and then a short-sleeved surcoat with a belt that ties around the waist.

The current dress-in-progress (DIP, if you want to do acronyms) uses a fabric printed with Superman comics. It won't be subtly bad-ass like my knitting dress (yes, that's how someone described it recently--what can I say? it has skeletons on it), but it will be quirky and hopefully fun. I'm going to the Yarn Harlot's lecture ("This is your brain on knitting") next week in Vancouver, and I'm torn between the knitting dress and the Superman dress. It'll probably be the knitting dress, but Superman's quite tempting. Might wear that on Sunday to church, just to see people's reactions.