Yolk Troubles?

This is a video response to a question from one of my lovely readers. She wanted to know how you can avoid breaking the yolk when cracking the egg. This is actually a very common problem so I decided to address it here. I believe most people are overly cautious with their eggs which actually leads to the yolk’s demise.

(Thanks for reading Elizabeth!)

Notes:

  1. “Don’t be afraid to crack it”= Don’t be afraid of cracking it too much. You can’t do that when only tapping it once.
  2. I used the word rapping instead of tapping which is wrong. Rapping implies multiple blows. Don’t do this.
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June 30, 2010. Cooking tips, Eggs. Leave a comment.

Over Easy

Note:
By “a few seconds” I really mean a minute.

June 30, 2010. Cooking tips, Eggs. 7 comments.

Alarm Clock Frogs

If you play this through your stereo at full volume it will accurately represent what the frogs in St. Lucia sound like. (You can barely hear the band playing in the background also.) If you stay at a place that is open, such as Ladera, you absolutely MUST bring earplugs. Luckily, we did our research and brought an entire box.

Also, please DO NOT feed the wild cats your breakfast at the restaraunt.Thank you. That is all.

June 30, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , . Me and Mine. 2 comments.

I may be Home but that Doesn’t Mean the Honeymoon is Over

Hey everybody! (You 10 awesome folks that read me) So I am back from my honeymoon in St. Lucia. Of course, everything was amazing.  First we stayed at the Sandals Grande for 6 nights. If you’re considering, DO. This place and the people there are incredible! Every single person is treated like a rock star. You feel like you have your own concierge. Seriously, I actually asked for an email address for the head honcho just so I could tell him how amazing this location is. (I’m a firm believer in positive reinforcement…and the possibility of complimentary thingies.) I could honestly go on and on for a long me and frankly, I’m too tired. Just trust me. Totally worth it. Then we stayed on the other side of the island in between the famous Pitons at Ladera. Again. Incredible. It’s basically, super amazing camping. We ate at the award winning Dasheene every day and it was totally worthy. Unfortunately, I do not have any photos to represent and you’ll just have to take my word for it. Take a look at my video tour after some pics if you have 10 minutes. The view will stun you.

Sampling strange new fruits!

The larger pink fruit filled with gooey green stuff is a passionfruit and behind it is something called a wax apple. The passionfruit was surprisingly sour but still good. The wax apple is very crisp and crunchy and like a cross between an apple and a pear but less juicy.

There was actually a very large front that made it rain a large portion of the time we were there. BUT where there is rain...

...there is sometimes a rainbow! If you are as lucky as us that is! I still can't believe I got this shot. It was only there for about 5 minutes. How magical!

Fresh Coconut

A Julie Mango (or St. Julian). Our cab driver told us out of the dozens and dozens of cultivars, this was his favorite. I can see why. It melted in my mouth.

Perfect

There are lots more photos on my flickr and I’ll be adding some underwater ones later as well. Stay tuned for the next installment in egg class which will be over easy and over medium. I’ll also (FINALLY!) be showing you the easiest way to fold a fitted sheet nicely.

Here’s a video tour of our villa if you’re interested. It is pretty amazing. You may recognize the view from Superman II. (There’s a brief scene where he flies away to go pick a Bird of Paradise for Lois.)

June 29, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , . Me and Mine. 2 comments.

Honeymoon

RPK and I are going on our honeymoon! Hooray!!! I need some serious sun before I go running to Wisconsin so there will be a break and I’ll be back in about 2 weeks!

Thanks for reading!

June 14, 2010. Me and Mine. 1 comment.

Sunny Side Up

Here is a backwards (don’t ask) video on how to make great looking sunny side up eggs. Some things to keep in mind:

  1. I know, I know. I say “um” a lot. It’s because I like to be thorough and specific and my brain and mouth don’t work at the same speed.
  2. There’s a little “dead air” while the eggs are actually cooking. Let’s get real. I can’t figure out how to edit the videos and it’s not like this is the Food Network. I do my best. Give me a break.
  3. Yeah. I said they’re perfect. What of it?

So if you can get past these things, hopefully you will write and share a picture of your beautiful eggs with me.

A few more egg related notes:

  1. If you like smaller, thicker, softer whites such as these   ↓
    all you do is use a smaller pan, crack them further away from one another and do not tilt your pan to let the whites spread.
  2. I’m sure someone somewhere is going to disagree with me about something. Seriously, I did a search for sunny side eggs and I found basted ones. This is what I know to be correct according to the places I have cooked, the people who have taught me and the research I have done.

June 11, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , , . Cooking tips, Eggs. 3 comments.

Coreopsis!

I LOVE them! What a great way to brighten your day and remind you the summer is a time for beautifying your life. However, they can get a bit weedy as they reseed themselves.

What do you do when you need to tame the beast? These are great to bring the outside in.

Instant Happy!

June 8, 2010. Tags: , , , , . Me and Mine. 3 comments.

Fabric Flowers

Here are a few easy options for making flowers out of fabric. You can make these all different sizes so they can be used for fascinators, smaller hair clips and pins, corsages, brooches, hats, shoes, and so on!

  • For the Ranunculus style:

Fold your fabric in several halves to cut several at a time.
Print out the pdf I’ve provided or draw your own. Keep in mind that you need to set your printer to print at the size you are going to want. (If you’re wanting a very small flower, just use the same pattern but print it at 80% or 70% and so on.)
Use these irregular circles as your pattern. Cut out several of at least 3 sizes.  In the one above, I cut out at least 15 of 4 sizes.

Depending on what type of fabric you are using, this is the point that you may want to apply fray check to the edges of each pile as it is easiest when they are all stacked evenly.

Next, begin with your largest petal stack and re-layer them on top one another so the edges are staggered. Follow with the next smallest size, and then the next, as shown here.

This fabric doesn't photograph well but you get the idea.

Next, sew all these layers together through the center. You should add a bead or three (odd numbers tend to look best) there. I use DMC embroidery floss or dental floss for the strength. Just knot it underneath. You’ll end up hiding the knot when you attach the flower to something.
*Extra note: A lot of times, I will tie the knot but leaves some string tails. I use them later when I sew my flower to my clip or comb.

Now, you may notice all the petals are lying very flat and the flower has no oomf. We will fix that.

Begin from the bottom.
Go up about 10 petals or so.
Insert your needle from the TOP side of this petal, very near the center. Go ahead and go through 2 or three petals.
Don’t pull your thread all the way through.
Go back up through them about 1/8″ over.  Tie a knot very taught.
You will see that this “gathers” the fabric into a one little bump. Continue this a few more times throughout your flower on different layers on different sides.

Gather small parts to add some lift and texture.

Now you're ready to use your flower!

→Download Ranunculus pattern pdf here: Ranunculus

  • For the purple one on the right

All 3 kinds

Choose one size from the pattern, trace it and cut out. You want about 20 layers of this one. If you want it to look more like a peony, you can round off those tips.

Cut!

Don’t forget your fray check (like I did) before you separate and re-layer your petals.

Layered

Fold in half.

and again.

Sew up the edge. Try to get through most of the petals.

Download this flower pattern pdf here: flower
(Help me name this flower!)

  • For the pansy style

And the last one is the simplest. This one will take you 6 minutes.

*For this one you just have to make sure your fabric is a synthetic nylon type of blend. 100% cotton won’t work on this baby. You need something that will melt.

Use the first Rananculus pattern (or draw some janky circles). You only need a few for this one!

Cut them out.

Burn the edges of each petal. Be careful! If you just hold it close to the flame, it can melt without catching on fire. If it does catch on fire, just blow it out. No biggie.

Now trim any excessively burnt edges. The idea is the melting creates texture and ripples and keeps the fabric from fraying so don't cut it all off.

Stack it and sew it! This is the easiest style to make very small for bobby pins.

♥♥♥


June 8, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , , , . Art and Neat stuff. 3 comments.

Raving and Raveling

I am getting really excited about the move and I am SUPER excited about having more time to knit as I have been feeling like I must take care of my responsibilities in other areas…much less fun areas. Here’s what I am really looking forward to filling my time with!

Coraline by Ysolda Teague

Even though this is a Lion Brand pattern, I do really love their organic cotton line which is the recommended yarn for this project so I bet it'd be really nice.

I don't think this is normally something I would like but there's something about it that caught my eye.

Bunny Hop Thrummed Bunny Slippers by Nikol Lohr

I would be afraid of taking these on except a fellow knitter, Chelsea, made a pair for our friend, Islay, and they were so adorable, cushy, soft, fluffy and warm. Really, they were simply amazing. I’ve never done this thrumming before, but it seems like the perfect thing to shove your feet into.
I mean, just look at these things!

Beautiful job Chelsea!

Yes, yes, I’m going to make things for the husband too!

Cobblestone Pullover by Jared Flood

And lots and lots and more socks!

I have plenty more in my queue but it may give away a possible surprise. This means, if you have a Ravelry account, you an go spy on my queue and see if you can’t figure it out. Just don’t guess out loud!
I can’t believe I just taught myself to knit in December by watching a few videos and practicing. Yes! Really! Are you convinced you can do anything yet? Get to it!

June 4, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , . Knitting. 4 comments.

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