Episode 137: LETTERPRESS

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letterpress-headerBeginning with a cabled neckline, this cowl cascades in gentle swirls around your neck and shoulders. The pattern includes a bit of shaping, a bit of texture, and many opportunities for color-play. Create a dramatic addition to your wardrobe with a mini-skein set or yarn left over from some of your favorite projects. Wear your Letterpress with the drape in front, or over one shoulder for asymmetric flair.

Pattern sales support my efforts as an audio podcaster, so I hope you will add this pattern to your library or purchase it for a fellow knitter.


KITS including the LETTERPRESS cowl pattern and hankette set are now available from Meghan of Distelfink Fiber Co.

Electronic payment:
1. Send an email to: coleen@mulberryhillfarm.com requesting the Letterpress hankette kit. Cost will be $32 for the kit, and shipping will be $7. Mulberry Hill Farm will invoice the requester and send information on how to make electronic payment through Square or Paypal. Shipping will be via USPS Priority Mail which should take 2-3 days for delivery;
OR,
2. Send $39 via Paypal to coleen@mulberryhillfarm.com requesting the Letterpress yarn kit in the “notes” section. Shipping will be via USPS Priority Mail which should take 2-3 days for delivery.

Paper check:
Send a written request for the Letterpress kit and a check for $39 via US Mail to: Distelfink Fiber, C/O Mulberry Hill Farm, 2998 Ritner Highway, Carlisle PA 17015. Check should be made payable to Mulberry Hill Farm. Shipping will be via USPS Priority Mail which should take 2-3 days for delivery.

Savory Mushroom Bread Pudding (a recipe in photos)

When the weather takes a turn for cool and crisp, I long for savory, belly-filling dishes that fill the house with hearty aromas. A savory bread pudding is a great way to cook from the pantry and use up little bits of ingredients you have in the fridge. I looked at several recipes for bread pudding featuring mushrooms, then composed my own dish from ingredients I had on hand. Bread pudding is an economical dish, allowing home cooks to make use of stale or old bread, so recipes that call for a loaf of fresh bread are missing the point.
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I keep a freezer bag for bread that has passed its prime. Dried out or stale ends of bread and leftover whole wheat hot dog buns are given new life in a bread pudding. When the bag is full, it’s time to make bread pudding!  I put slices into the toaster to thaw, rub them with a clove of garlic, then toast for an additional 10-15 minutes in a 350 oven. About a dozen slices is enough for six servings.
While the bread is toasting, saute (separately) sliced mushrooms and chopped onion. Add everything back into the same pan, and toss in a handful or more of chopped bitter greens like kale or Swiss chard. Remove from heat to cool
While the bread is toasting, saute (separately) sliced mushrooms and chopped onion. Add everything back into the same pan, and toss in a handful or more of chopped bitter greens like kale or Swiss chard. Remove from heat to cool.
When the bread has cooled, cut it into cubes.
Remove bread from oven and cut it into cubes.
Whisk together four eggs and two cups of liquid. I checked my refrigerator and found some skim milk, and some half and half. That didn't quite equal two cups, so I added some of the mushroom stock that was simmering on the stove. Add a few tablespoons of chopped fresh herbs, a teaspoon of dried herbs, a teaspoon salt and some freshly-cracked pepper.
Whisk together four eggs and two cups of liquid. I checked my refrigerator and found skim milk and some half and half. That didn’t quite equal two cups, so I added some of the mushroom stock that was simmering on the stove. Add a few tablespoons of chopped fresh herbs, a teaspoon of dried herbs, a teaspoon salt and some freshly-cracked pepper.
Allow toasted bread cubes to soften in the milk/egg mixture for ten minutes before adding the sautéed vegetables.
Allow toasted bread cubes to soften in the milk/egg mixture for ten minutes before adding the sautéed vegetables.
Check your refrigerator for cheese and grate about 3/4 cup. Here is a mixture of parmesan, goat gouda and jack cheeses.
Check your refrigerator for cheese and grate about 3/4 cup. Here is a mixture of parmesan, goat gouda and jack cheeses.
Stir in about 2/3 of the cheese, then spoon the mixture into lightly-buttered baking dishes. Top with remaining cheese. Bread pudding can be wrapped and stored in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight before baking. If I do this, I like to allow the pans to sit on the counter for 30 minutes before baking in a 350 oven. I'm going to serve the larger dish for dinner tonight. The smaller dish will be baked until just cooked through, then cooled, wrapped in foil, and stored in the freezer for a quick week-night meal.
Stir in about 2/3 of the cheese, then spoon the mixture into lightly-buttered baking dishes. Top with remaining cheese. Bread pudding can be wrapped and stored in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight before baking. If I do this, I allow the dish to sit on the counter for 30 minutes before baking in a 350 oven. Sometimes I bake bread pudding in two smaller dishes rather than one large. I’m going to serve the portion on the left for dinner tonight. The dish on the right will be baked until just cooked through, then cooled, wrapped in foil, and stored in the freezer for a quick week-night meal. If the pudding seems like it has absorbed all of the liquid, add some stock or milk before baking.
Delicious and fragrant bread pudding right from the oven. Bake at 350 until the top is golden brown and the pudding bubbles in the center.
Delicious and fragrant bread pudding right from the oven. Bake at 350 until the top is golden brown and the pudding bubbles in the center.

Episode 136: Samuel’s Smart, Late-night Tofu Spaghetti

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cover136This episode includes the following segments: The Front Porch and Ever-expanding Skill Set. This month, we’re cooking with mushrooms at Yin Hoo. One of my favorite dishes is Samuel’s tofu spaghetti — this week Samuel joins me on the podcast to reminisce about his undergraduate days as a philosophy major and to share some of his secrets for making an umami-rich mushroom and tofu rage.


FleeceWise

Fleecewise, the series, starts this week on the New Hampshire Knits podcast. Claire has some great interviews lined up. Continue by watching Sara of FiberTrek and Emily of Fibre Town, then join me here for the series conclusion just before Rhinebeck. There is something for everyone with this thoughtful programming. Join in the Ravelry conversation or ask questions of the podcast hosts.

Samuel makes a guest appearance on this episode. Several of you have been asking about an opportunity to hear the band, so here is a very special invitation. BSC will play a Gospel concert and sing-along -- unplugged and in period dress -- at the Kingwood United Methodist Church in Stockton, NJ on October 2nd. Click the photo for more information.

Samuel makes a guest appearance on this episode. Several of you have been asking about an opportunity to hear the band, so here is a very special invitation. Bovine Social Club will play a Gospel concert and sing-along — unplugged and in period dress — at the Kingwood United Methodist Church in Stockton, NJ on October 2nd. Click the photo for more information.


The Front Porch

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I’m trying Blackthorn needles and Knitter’s Pride Dreams to knit the Collywobbles pattern by Emily Estrada. This Fat Cat Knits yarn is the perfect combination of autumnal shades.

Ever-expanding Skill Set

Warren is the incredibly knowledgeable and helpful vendor of WoodsFresh mushrooms.
Warren is the incredibly knowledgeable and helpful vendor of WoodsFresh mushrooms.
Here is the Lion's Mane mushroom. Can't wait to cook with it this week.
Here is the Lion’s Mane mushroom. Can’t wait to cook with it this week.

Samuel’s Tofu Spaghetti Shopping List

  • 1 package extra-firm tofu
  • 1 lb. mushrooms
  • 2-3 cans organic tomato paste
  • 1 box thin spaghetti
  • sharp cheese (Swiss, parmesan, etc.)
  • double-bottle inexpensive red wine

From the Pantry

  • butter / oil
  • oregano, basil, parsley
  • soy sauce or miso paste
  • garlic

 

 

 

 


 

Episode 135: Fair Isle Knitting

cover135This episode includes the following segments: The Front Porch, Ever-expanding Skill Set, and Off the Shelf. Links to the patterns and projects I mention:

Fair Isle Style by Mary Jane Mucklestone

Bressay Dress by Gudrun Johnston

Mirry-Dancers Yoked Pullover by Cheryl Burke

Mushroom Kelliemuffs by SpillyJane

Journal Cowl by Beatrice Perron Dahlen


The Front Porch

The colorwork yoke of my Bressa dress. I hold the contrasting color in my left hand, the main color in my right.
The colorwork yoke of my Bressa dress. I hold the contrasting color in my left hand, the main color in my right.
Traditional Fair Isle motifs like the ones in the Bressay dress are small, so the yarn is carried behind the work for just a few stitches at a time.
Traditional Fair Isle motifs like the ones in the Bressay dress are small, so the yarn is carried behind the work for just a few stitches at a time.

Ever-expanding Skill Set

Cook along in September by using mushrooms and using #powerpantry to share posts on social media. You can also share recipe ideas, photographs and tips on Ravelry. Click for a link to the discussion board.
Cook along in September by using mushrooms and using #powerpantry to share posts on social media. You can also share recipe ideas, photographs and tips on Ravelry. Click for a link to the discussion board.

Off The Shelf 

Episode 134: The Music of Knitting

cover134aThis episode begins with a few announcements, and then it is devoted to a discussion of knitting needles and related topics: preferences, brands, durability, storage, etc. I make reference to many of the contributions to a recent Ravelry poll and discussion in the Yarns at Yin Hoo group. Thank you to everyone who took the time to participate. At the end of the show, I announce two winners: one will receive their choice of needles from The Woolly Thistle; the other will receive a skein of merino/bamboo handspun.


My needle storage case from Crippenworks straight and circular needle case. I have had it for four years and it is the perfect size to accommodate my growing collection.
My needle storage case from Crippenworks straight and circular needle case. I have had it for four years and it is the perfect size to accommodate my growing collection. Click for a link to the Etsy shop.
My sox-periment: knitting socks in tandem on Hiya Hiya sharps and Knitters Pride Karbonz. I decided to add 2" of ribbing after completing the gusset, resulting in a stretchier and better-fitting sock.
My sox-periment: knitting socks in tandem on Hiya Hiya sharps and Knitters Pride Karbonz. I decided to add 2″ of ribbing after completing the gusset, resulting in a stretchier and better-fitting sock.
Socks complete. These will be perfect for winter. They are very warm because of the Wensleydale and alpaca.
Socks complete. These will be perfect for winter. They are very warm because of the Wensleydale and alpaca.

Episode 133: Morels & Magic Corkshrooms

cover135This episode includes the following segments: The Back Porch, The Front Porch, Off the Shelf, Ever-expanding Skill Set, and Yarn Lover at Large. Do you find that clarity comes with a change in the seasons? I feel the first hints of autumn and I’m inspired to think cozy thoughts of roasted vegetables, soup, and ambitious knitting projects. I’ve been enjoying Morels, a 2-player card game that’s been around for awhile, but has suddenly captured my imagination. I went on a bit of a mushroom hunt in the Ravelry forest and found the perfect pattern for holiday gifting.


The Back Porch

Knit with hand-processed, hand-spun, and botanically-dyed fibers, this Sheep to Shawl project is an adaptation of my forthcoming cowl design.
Knit with hand-processed, hand-spun, and botanically-dyed fibers, this Sheep to Shawl project is an adaptation of my forthcoming cowl design.

For sneak peeks of the Letterpress Cowl, check #letterpresscowl on Instagram for snapshots of projects in progress posted by test knitters.


The Front Porch

I've been playing with colors, yarn weights, and gauge for the Bressay Dress designed by Gudrun Johnston.
I’ve been playing with colors, yarn weights, and gauge for the Bressay Dress designed by Gudrun Johnston.

Ever-expanding Skill Set

With tomatoes from my mother's New Jersey garden and my sister's Vermont homestead, I made up a batch of salsa for holiday gift giving. I don't have much formal canning equipment, so this canning insert comes in handy. To lift half-pint jars, I wrap produce bands around my kitchen tongs. It works great.
With tomatoes from my mother’s New Jersey garden and my sister’s Vermont homestead, I made up a batch of salsa for holiday gift giving. I don’t have much formal canning equipment, so this canning insert comes in handy. To lift half-pint jars, I wrap produce bands around my kitchen tongs. It works great.

Here’s a link to the type of insert that I’ve found useful for canning in a regular stock pot.

The tomato haul yielded 14 half-pint jars and two full pints.
The tomato haul yielded 14 half-pint jars and two full pints.