Thursday, January 26, 2006

Getting The Ball Rolling

Who doesn't love pictures of cats? They're so distracting from a lack of initial content. The entire staff at my work was recently laid off, so now I have the time to start a blog. Incidentally, I'm working on a murder mystery set at my former workplace...

What I'm up to (besides job hunting):

Reading: White Teeth, by Zadie Smith (for book club), Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell, Portrait in Sepia (Isabel Allende), Murder on a Bad Hair Day (Anne George).

Knitting: Heirloom Silk Shawl (from Knitting for Two) for a friend's baby (in RYC Yarns Cashsoft 4-Ply in Cream), Belle Epoque (from for me (in RYC Yarns SoftLux in Ciel), Heavenly Stole (from Exquisite Little Knits) for someone to be determined (in KidSilk Haze in Heavenly). I will add knitting photos as I finish things, and figure out how to add a sidebar list of projects OTN. I finished an amazing list of Christmas presents last year (39 items from slippers to sweaters), but didn't have the foresight to photograph everything before giving them away. D'oh! I mostly regret not having photographed the four scarves I made for my aunts and cousin in different lace patterns. More on this when I have a slow day. I also recently finished the Opera Scarf from Exquisite Little Knits (love that book!) in wonderful purples. Completely impractical, but a nice gift for myself for having Christmas stuff done on deadline. I also have to re-knit the collar of the sweater I made my husband for Christmas (Leo from in Blue Sky Alpaca Silk in Mocha), because it's too tight. It's fine once it's on, but it's a bit painful for him to pull the sweater over his ears. This has happened to me before when picking up and knitting a collar in the round. I picked up the right number of stitches, but I must do it too tightly, because this has happened to me before. I'll re-do the collar on a larger needle, and maybe pick up a few extra stitches.

Writing: The aforementioned murder mystery, a ghost story for children

Cooking: Making vegetable broth to freeze today (the first batch I made in the fall just ran out). I make gallons of it, then freeze it in those 3-cup Ziploc containers so I can make soup all winter.

Vegetable Stock

3 parsnips, peeled if waxed, cut into large chunks
1 pound carrots, scrubbed, cut into large chunks
1 bunch celery, washed, cut into large chunks
5 small onions, peeled and quartered
3 large leeks, washed and cut into large chunks
1/2 head garlic, cloves peeled
8 oz. cremini mushrooms, wiped and quartered
8 oz. white mushrooms, wiped and quartered
1 bunch parsley
3 tsp black peppercorns
2 pinches thyme
4 bay leaves

I make this recipe divided between my two stockpots (8 quart and 6 quart). Divide all ingredients proportionally between pots. Cover with water. Bring to a boil. Simmer 30 minutes. Strain through a colander or pentola insert, reserving liquid. Discard vegetables. If clearer broth is desired, strain through cheesecloth. Ladle into 3-cup, freezer-safe containers. Cool, then cover and freeze. Substitute vegetables or add additional seasonings or salt if desired.

No comments: