Month: March 2020

Here I go again ..

.. and I hear no trumpets blowing, even though my coming across a (to me) new and impressive knitting stitch is very exciting !

(It’s actually a stitch that’s very probably been around since knitting began !)

Pleasing. Monocolour. Large needles and medium weight wool.

Horrible. Monocolour. Needles far too big and totally unsuitable yarn.

To die for. This kind of extremely short colour-change wool is perfect, with small needle size.

None of them is mine. Here’s all I’ve done so far:

The usual quality of photo (what else ?) with edge lighting confusing the image. Sport weight pure wool, 3.25 needles. Coming along well ..

Does that help ? Probably not. Sighh ..

ANYWAY. Linen stitch is exactly like material, from which fact comes its name. It isn’t reversible, meaning that the back is different: looks like an incredibly neat moss stitch.

Lots of pros and 2 cons:

  1. My sample is 20 rows ! – imagine the time it would take to knit a long scarf ..
  2. The stitch requires (from me, at least) concentration: it’s easy to suddenly fall out of sync.

But I’d never done it before, and now I have.

:D

 

 

My music: the little clever fellers

When I say “clever”, I mean that these two blokes wrote (write ? – that I don’t know) songs that were wonderfully melodious and appealing, but also meaningful. I refer to two of my favourites who were both big stars in the ’70s but are still writing and performing – Paul Simon and Paul Williams.

(The “w.m. and a.” part could be truly applied to, say, “What a day for a daydream”, but certainly not the “m.”, for instance ..)

Whereas Simon’s career has been that of an absolutely successful and admired around the world musician,

as indicated by his official website (link behind screengrab), Paul Williams’ career has been much more varied,


as is clear from his website (link also provided behind screengrab).

Paul Simon has performed his own compositions I believe exclusively – that is, in terms of actual recordings, anyway. Some of those I love most are:

One man’s ceiling is another man’s floor

Loves me like a rock

— which are from the album “There goes Rhymin’ Simon”; and also

50 ways to leave your lover

Have a good time

both from “Still crazy after all these years” album, and I delight in the title track.

The ’60s and ’70s weren’t just rock, not by any means: in fact it was during those two decades that some of the loveliest songs ever written in the ‘pop’ genre (which is to say, music listened to by the youth of the day) were released.

Two of Paul Williams’ most haunting tracks are

Evergreen – an Academy Award winner !, and

The Rainbow Connection. Now THERE’s a novel version .. or not really – the song is Kermit’s, after all.

Williams has written so many wonderful songs that I can’t possibly enumerate them; but “Rainy days and Mondays”, “Out in the Country” – yesss ! Three Dog Night recorded it !, “Someday man”, “Ordinary Fool” – dozens and dozens of examples of beautiful music with terrific lyrics. If I don’t link to them it’s only because I know I would immediately wish I’d mentioned different songs.

But here’s one from Randy Newman written about Paul Williams ! You will soon learn why .. [grin] It’s a great song, btw, and you’ll enjoy it, I think. As to why Newman wrote this song .. you have only to listen to the lyrics of Williams’ Do you love me babe ? ..

So my use of the adjective “clever” should now be clear: these are men almost without peer in their industry, and they deserve all the accolades their fans heap on them.

Easy on the heat, this time

Can it be true ?, they all cried: she’s posting ANOTHER recipe ? What is wrong with this woman ? – why can she not be stopped ?!

Heh heh .. because I’m on a roll re cooking at this time. But I will have to stop as of tomorrow, for there is zero space in my freezer. (And to be brutally honest, I don’t even know if what’s already in there will all re-heat entirely edibly ! But I’m pretty confident ..)

Today I present for your delectation the recipe I didn’t make when I said I would, but only the night before last ..

Oh, before I forget:

THESE are shallots !
Whereas these are spring onions,

SLIGHTLY SPICY PEANUT STEW

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 medium-size eggplant, peeled and cut into ½” dice
  • 1 tsp salt, more to taste
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • ¼ tsp turmeric
  • ¼ tsp chilli
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil (use peanut if you have it)
  • 2 shallots, thinly sliced
  • 5cm ginger, peeled and chopped fine
  • 1 long red chilli, sliced small
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • smallest can tomato paste
  • can diced tomatoes
  • 3 cups vegetable stock
  • ½ cup unsweetened peanut butter (smooth or chunky)
  • 1 large-ish zucchini, cut in quarters lengthwise, then sliced ¾”
  • 2 tbsps freshly squeezed lemon juice (1 to 2 lemons)
  • ½ cup coarsely-chopped parsley, plus some for garnish

PREPARATION

  • In a large pot, heat 3 tbsps oil, medium-high heat. Add shallots and fry, stirring often, until soft and caramelized, about 10 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer shallots to a bowl, leaving oil in pot.
  • Raise heat to high and add eggplant (probably some more oil as well). Cook, stirring often, until lightly browned and just tender, about 10 minutes. Transfer to bowl with shallots.
  • Add oil to pot and heat over medium-high: add ginger and chilli and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds.
  • Add all spices and cook, stirring, 30 seconds more.
  • Add onion and cook, stirring to scrape up any browned bits, until softened and translucent, about 5 minutes.
  • Add tomato paste and cook, stirring, 1 minute.
  • Add diced tomatoes, stock, eggplant and shallots and a sprinkling of salt. Bring to a boil and cook 5 minutes.
  • Place peanut butter in a medium bowl, add one or two ladles of the hot liquid, and stir until emulsified, then pour mixture back in.
  • Reduce heat to a simmer, add zucchini, cover and cook 10—15’, until it’s tender.
  • Turn off heat and stir in lemon juice and chopped parsley. Let cool slightly and taste; add salt if necessary.
  • Serve in bowls with rice, garnished with parsley (and chopped peanuts, if you like).

I must be honest about this recipe: it is not the easiest or least finicky I’ve made. I did promise only to post simple recipes, amongst which this one isn’t entitled to be listed.

HOWEVER ! Whilst I did not even eat it on the night it was cooked, but left it sitting there overnight and then divided it into containers and glommed the contents of one down last night, I am here to tell you that it is REALLY, REALLY DELICIOUS !!

So I s’pose that boils down to saying that the end justified the means; or, basically, that it was very much worth it !    :)

Yes, it’s another chilli – but even healthier !   :)

I can’t seem to get enough chilli recipes to keep me happy !

Friday night ago I had 2 friends to dinner and fed ’em a chilli based on Quorn mince – which recipe is, I promise you, DELICIOUS ! The Quorn simply provides .. well, bulk, really; it doesn’t make you think you’re eating meat (even if the manufacturers would like that). But on the other hand, were it real mince in that chilli, you wouldn’t be aware of the taste of meat – if you see what I mean.

I forgot to take a shot of it.

Anyway. Last night, having made my friend S (yes, the one who monsters me about my crochet) take me to the 7am to 8am elderlies’ shopping hour at Coles and then, having discovered the largely empty shelves, go shopping for me elsewhere, I was in the happy position of having the ingredients of no less than FOUR major meals – so I made the first on my list.

Apart from the somewhat mucky state of the sides of the dutch oven, does that not look good ?? – so I provide herewith ..


MULTI-BEAN CHILLI

Ingredients (6 servings)

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 medium carrots, peeled and chopped small-ish
  • 1 red capsicum, chopped
  • 1 green capsicum, chopped
  • 1 medium onion (or 2 small), chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves chopped fine
  • 1 long red chilli, sliced
  • 1 tsp chilli powder (mine is, like, hot)
  • 1 tbsp ground cumin
  • can diced tomatoes including juice
  • can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
  • can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 125g tomato juice / passata
  • salt

Instructions

  • Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat.
  • Add the carrots, capsicums, onion, and garlic. Cook, stirring, until the onions are golden, 12 to 15 minutes.
  • Add the chilli, chilli powder and cumin. Cook, stirring, for 2 minutes.
  • Add canned tomatoes and all three beans, tomato juice, and salt to taste. Bring to a boil ..
  • .. then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally until the flavours are blended, about 40’. If it begins to look too dry add some water (see below) as needed.
  • Taste and adjust the seasonings.

To be noted: be aware of the strength of whatever chilli powder you have !!! The recipe actually requires a tablespoon of chilli powder (ACK !), but I was wise ..

As you can see, there’s no bulk liquid in the ingredients. I found I needed to add more passata; and I also filled the emptied tomatoes can with water and added some of that.

Having stuffed my face last night with this yummy chilli, I found that this-morning it tastes even better (no, not chilli for breakfast: just tasting while putting into containers for the fridge) ! But I shall ignore it for a bit; because tonight I’m making Slightly Spicy Peanut Stew !

FO from a few weeks ago

A VERY big cardigan ..

This was the WIP I posted about before. I am somewhat embarrassed to put photos of it in my post, as I clearly remember raving about the yarn colour/s.

Ahem.

Well, I’m always ready to admit to my mistakes.

Meant to show the ‘cabling’ better, but another fail !

I’m sort of pleased with it, inasmuch as it’s an FO .. and I intend to wear it out in the cold weather, in spite of my friend S who reckons it’s for inside only.   [grin]

And btw, it’s meant to be that long !

See ?