Category Archives: podcasts

Episode 251


The Back Porch

  • Rift by Jaqueline Cieslak in Green Mountain Spinnery Cotton Comfort

  • sock darning (woven patch technique) by Bristol Ivy from Making Magazine No. 5  COLOR


Muhammara  from Arabic meaning “something red” 

Special thanks to Selma for introducing me to this dish and sharing her recipe.

  • Joumana Accad of Taste of Beirut shares her Lebanese version of the dish in this VIDEO, which I initially watched to get a handle on the pronunciation
  • Ottolenghi’s recipe, which uses breadcrumbs instead of walnuts
  • Healthy Nibble’s recipe gave me the idea to use a spoon of ketchup in my version to boost the sweetness and umami

Muhammara (#powerpantry version)

Makes about 2 cups

  • 2 red (orange or yellow) bell peppers (seeds and stems removed), roasted and peeled
  • 1/2 c. sunflower seeds, toasted in a cast iron skillet
  • 1/4 c. walnuts, toasted in a cast iron skillet
  • 1 clove garlic
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1 tblsp. molasses / balsamic vinegar / sorghum syrup
  • 1 tblsp. organic ketchup
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. red pepper flakes
  • salt to taste
  • olive oil

Add all ingredients to a food processor, and blend to desired consistency, adding olive oil if needed.

I coat my peppers with salt and olive oil before roasting, so I found I added very little olive oil when blending.

Soaking sunflower seeds overnight may help improve the texture, but then I think it would be difficult to toast them.

This dip keeps nicely for up to  a week in the refrigerator.

Off the Shelf

When I read Walker’s poem ,”For My People,” on the Poetry Foundation website, and saw the image of POETRY magazine’s November 1937 issue in the margin, I though it must be a mistake.  Walker’s language, and her choices concerning punctuation, the driving urgency of the stanzas as they build — all result in a poem that seems as though it has been recently composed.  I think it is a remark about the current era of protests and demands for reform that a poem written in 1937 could resonate still-relevant themes concerning brutality, incarceration, inequality, and iniquity.

  • For My People” by Margaret Walker, first published in the November 1937 issue of POETRY magazine
  • Poetry Foundation biography of Margaret Walker
  • I Remember by Joe Brainard

Mudlarking by Lara Maiklem





Episode 250

The Back Porch

  • short socks knit in It’s a Chard Sock Life from KnitSpinFarm

The Front Porch

Taking Back the River, a pattern for toe-up socks, is currently being test knit and will be published on June 20th.  It is the first of a four-pattern collection that will be released in the coming year.  All designs are inspired by Clarissa Pinkola Estés’ Women Who Run with the Wolves.  Follow #wwrwtwcollection and #takingbacktheriversocks on IG.

  • Taking Back the River test knit in Sojourner Sock from Birch Hollow Fibers
  • Rift Tee by Jacqueline Cieslak in Green Mountain Spinnery’s Cotton Comfort
  • Bressay by Marie Wallin in MW British Breeds


And Sew Forth

Episode 249

Test Knitters Wanted!

I have completed a draft for a toe-up sock pattern, the first in a four-pattern collection that takes its inspiration from Clarissa Pinkola Estés’ Women Who Run with the Wolves.  I need test knitters for 56, 64, and 72 stitch circumference socks in solid or tonal yarn. You will have approximately one month from issue of draft pattern to complete at least one sock.  Contact me via IG or Ravelry, indicating your preferred size.

The Back Porch

Combo spin: 616 yds. 2-ply (singles spun on Turkish spindles; plied on Louët S10DT

The Front Porch

  • It’s a Chard Sock Life on Targhee sock from Knit Spin Farm.  I love this yarn!  Working to get at least two pair of shortie socks that will be gifts for my mother and sister.
  • Bressay by Marie Wallin will be on the needles this weekend.


Off the Shelf

  • Topsy Turvey World” lyrics by William Brighty Rands (1823-82), featured on Natalie Merchant’s Leave Your Sleep


Wednesday, May 6th @ 8 pm EST — receive link after making a donation to benefit Roy’s Hall in Blairstown, New Jersey


Episode 248

It’s all about the small pleasures this episode.  A knitting project went bust, but I’m so enjoying my Moonrise pendant and some new spinning fiber.  Also in this episode: crackers, potted herbs and vegetables, what’s on my nightstand and looking forward to rhubarb!

The Back Porch

Moonrise pendant (pattern by tiny owl knits)

There are now about 5x more beads added to the fringe!

The Front Porch

Meditative spindling with new fiber for my Turtlemade turkish spindle: Rose Quartz rolags from Green Goat Ranch


Off the Shelf

Episode 247

A finished spinning project, plus knitting, felting and a poem in anticipation of April’s Pink Moon. I’ve been thinking about cooking and baking with spice blends like za’atar and lining up interesting things to read.

The Back Porch

I finished plying 8 ounces (550 yards) and I’m so happy with the result of this yarn.  The plan is to cast on Laura Chau’s Top Down Shoulder Warmer as soon as I am finished with my current project.

The Front Porch

Since recording this episode, I completed my pendant and I love the result!  I was able to shrink the dimensions a bit more with another thirty minutes of felting.  I used my lucet to create cordage with some linen yarn, and added linen fringe and beads. This pendant is bold, yet lightweight and easy to wear. The pattern is Moonrise Earrings from tiny owl knits.


Off the Shelf


Episode 246

April is National Poetry Month.  US Poet Laureate, Joy Harjo claims, “Without poetry, we lose our way.” William Carlos Williams wrote, “It is difficult / to get the news from poems / yet men die miserably every day / for lack / of what is found there.” In this episode, I share some poems for challenging times.  Thank you to listeners Sue, Nancy and Robin for submissions of poems to read on this episode.  I invite you to find a poem for solace and comfort, or to share poems with others.


How to Survive This

by Barbara Kingsolver

O misery. Imperfect

universe of days stretched out

ahead, the string of pearls

and drops of venom on the web,

losses of heart, of life

and limb, news of the worst:

Remind me again

the day will come

when I look back amazed

at the waste of sorry salt

when I had no more than this

to cry about.

Now I lay me down.

I’m not there yet.