Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Raspberry ricotta Dutch baby

I tried this recipe from Half-Baked Harvest. I don't have the right kind of pan for Dutch baby, but it usually works fine in my casserole dish. But this time it didn't rise - maybe b/c of the raspberries or ricotta. I also made some of the cream. However, it turns out that I really dislike the texture of ricotta. So that was no good. I did eat the crusty edges, tasted like popovers.

Monday, April 23, 2018

Window boxes

Of course, I'd like to have REAL window boxes, but most of those involve screwing things to the facade of the building. I think my landlord would object. So I figured out that if I found something narrow enough (my windowsills are about 4 1/2 inches wide) then put a trellis right against it to hold it in place, I could try it. Of course, the squirrels will go digging through them and jump on them, but at least I'm trying! I looked at a lot of different things and ended up with two wooden crates from Jo-Ann, which I painted with acrylic paint. I'm going to put coconut matting in them, fill them with dirt, and plant pansies. We'll see how it goes. I'm putting the boxes on here because I painted them.

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Tiered skirt for Sara the Librarian

This was McCall's pattern 7604. I took out the waistband and just made a hem for a drawstring/elastic on the first tier. I did actually baste the gathers! The hem is sewn with a simple looping stitch on my machine. 

Sunday, April 1, 2018

First attempt at a shirt

This was Simplicity pattern 8052. Well, that was an epic fail. I suspect this might work better with a knit, rather than cotton, but there were many factors involved. It's basically a front and back and you sew them together in sections. I found the facing around the collar very tricky (and also, I suspect, unnecessary, even though I left out the interfacing). The sleeves crimped and that part was several inches too small anyways.

When I did the bottom half, I found that it didn't match the top - I'm not sure if I cut it wrong or what, but there's supposed to be a dart in front and gathers behind. Basically it didn't match! I didn't bother to hem the bottom - I was able to get it on, but the sleeves and back were so tight I couldn't lift my arms (and had trouble getting it off!) while the lower "skirt" part was way too big, making it look like I was wearing a badly fitted scrubs top. Back to the drawing board! Skirts are a LOT easier!

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Peanut turtles and stuff

I went back to the old way of doing it, with one slight change. I buttered all the pans, melted the caramel and mixed in peanuts, then dumped the whole thing in a buttered pan. Then I melted the chocolate. I divided up the caramel (burning my fingers a little b/c it was still hot and not very workable) then I used a slotted spoon and spatula to dip them in the chocolate. Worked much better! The remaining chocolate I mixed with the leftover salted pecans and dumped in a pan.

Then I had to wash butter off of everything.

Pecan turtles

I melted caramel, mixed in salted pecan pieces, then dumped it in spoonfuls into a buttered foil pan. Then I melted two bars of dipping chocolate. I squished the caramel/pecan mixture into chunks and dipped it in the chocolate. Then I got bored and pour a layer of chocolate into a buttered pan, then squished flat the rest of the caramel mixture and added another layer of chocolate on top. Once it's cooled and hardened (and I've cleaned my cutting board) I'll turn it out and slice it up.

Well, that didn't work. I ended up with a giant slab but when I cut it up it kind of... disintegrated. I guess I'll stick to the slow way.

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Rocky Road candy

I meant to make this candy back in December. And then in January. Now it's March. I bought dipping chocolate in bulk - the big chunks - melted it in my double boiler, and stirred in peanuts. For the first batch I also stirred in marshmallows, for the second I layered the pan and poured the chocolate/peanut mixture on top. I put them in aluminum pans that I greased with butter. The staff liked them, but I think there were to many marshmallows in the first batch.