Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Whipped Feta and Pecan Squash Blossoms


A delicacy found only in the early growing seasons of spring and fall, squash blossoms are the quiet humble parents of zucchini. The beautiful vein leafed yellow flowers are the first signs of a good vegetable harvest and easily overlooked as a harvest themselves. Because there are usually more male flowers than female flowers, the males (no squash attached) can be harvested and enjoyed in salads, pastas, quiches, or anything your taste buds can imagine. I think that there is something inherently magical about flowers, whether giving life to a home or love to a dear friend, or yes, even filling our bellies. There is definitely something special about nourishing ourselves with flowers! I was happily surprised to find a bagful of these blossoms in our weekly CSA from Indieplate, which just so happened to be dropped off a few days before my birthday. I didn't have a specific plan or recipe in mind, but my growling stomach and a few other fresh ingredients I had on hand made for a perfect afternoon birthday treat. So here is my southern take on this beautiful magical food, because my taste buds think the best way to enjoy them is deep fried with sunshine, bare feet, and most certainly fresh strawberry beer. 


Ingredients:

1/2 cup feta
1 ounce cream cheese
1 handful of pecans
5 squash blossoms
3/4 cup flour
Pinch of sea salt
6 ounces Parish Brewing Co. Strawberry Canebrake (can substitute beer of choice or club soda)
Canola or vegetable oil

Recipe:

Gently wash the blossoms and pat dry. Add about an inch of oil to a medium pot and heat on medium-high.

In a small food processor, combine the feta and cream cheese and process until you get a nice whipped creamy consistency (about 30 seconds). Add in the pecans and blend until the nuts have been coarsely chopped and blended into the feta. 

Add the flour to a mixing bowl with the pinch of salt. Lightly whisk in the beer. Gently tease open each blossom and use a small spoon and your fingers to add 1-2 teaspoons of your feta filling. Gently close the blossom and twist the ends of the petals together. Drench each into the prepared batter and let any excess drip away. Fry each blossom in the oil separately for about a minute, using a slotted spoon to flip the blossom halfway through. Remove the blossoms from the oil and lay on a plate lined with a towel to absorb any excess oil while the blossoms cool.  


Thursday, April 20, 2017

A Little Weaving



A few months ago, I came across the tiniest cutest weaving loom that I absolutely could not resists picking up. I have been wanting to try weaving for so long, and this seemed like the perfect gateway. I learned the basic weave stitch, soumac stitch, and raya knots. My little weaving came out a bit rough and not sure why it kept getting smaller towards the top, but I had so much fun nevertheless. I was also able to use some beautiful scraps I had leftover of Quince and Co.'s Finch yarn in colorway Audouin, Moeke's Elena yarn in colorway Walnut, and Yoth's  Father yarn in colorway Poppy Seed. Now I'm dreaming of what to weave next. I have my eye on this book by the talented weaver Maryanne Moodie, this loom from Purl Soho, and their insanely beautiful woven scarf pattern released recently.

In other news, our spring garden is growing so well, and I have plans to till up a big space for cut flowers this weekend. If the harvest is good, we will be at the local farmer's market mid-summer! I also have doubled my cucumber and okra plants this year for more pickling. Those are just a few reasons that Spring is my absolute favorite season. I hope your Spring is off to a wonderful start, too!


Thursday, March 2, 2017

Rosemound Scarf for Taproot Magazine


So excited/honored/thankful to be a contributor in Taproot Magazine's first issue of 2017, WEAVE. I've always had the notion that art is anything that makes you feel. Anything that moves you. I remember the first time I held this magazine, not that long ago, and it surely gave me all the feels. Every single article was genuine and filled with so much love and soul. This magazine has become one of my favorite, if not my favorite, publication, and one that each issue I can peruse over and over again. If you are a creative, gardener, wanderer, homebody, mother, father, dreamer, or anyone who has the urge to slow down and take in some lovely words and photos take a peek at this wonderful magazine. You can find the WEAVE issue here and my Rosemound Scarf pattern on Ravelry here.


Thursday, December 15, 2016

A Gift in a Jar: Butterscotch Brownies

 
I hope you all are having a nice slow and cozy Advent and holiday season so far. I know these short days can be so hectic and not so cheery to many, and please know that I am thinking of you. I have learned over the past few years, this season, although filled with pretty lights, sweet gifts, and yummy treats, is most importantly a season of preparation and stillness. Remembering our sweet Savior's first coming into the world as a baby in a manger and preparing our souls for when He comes again. Thinking of Jesus' Earthly life is so comforting to me because it reminds me that he gets me. He fully understands the trials we are going through, and He is right by our sides, through every painful and every joyous moment.  I hope that thought comforts you too, and allows us all to be grateful for Him first, send extra love to others second, and soak in all the wonderful magical things this season brings third. 

In the spirit of Christmas and gift giving, I wanted to share a homemade project with you this year that you can cozy up indoors and make for your loved one.  It's a simple brownie mix that you could gift on it's own or pair it with an oven mitt for a little gift set that is sure to warm the heart and the belly. I paired my brownie mix with the oven mitt I designed for my crochet class on Skillshare. If you may be interested in making this little mitt, you can head over to my class to see how it's done. If you are already a crocheter, feel free to just download the pattern or skip over to the project videos.

I love using natural and simple materials when I create things whether it's gifts or just a little something for myself. I think it offers a peaceful and warm feel made with intention. I chose to use simple ingredients for the brownie mix that you most likely have on hand, and my oven mitt was made with pure American wool. For the wrapping, I used a natural linen fabric, a bit of twine, and a tree clipping. I very much hope you enjoy making this gift and gifting it! 
Brownie Mix:

1 1/4 cup flour
2 cups sugar
2/3 cup cocoa powder
pinch of salt
butterscotch morsels

Mix all brownie ingredients in a bowl with a handful of the butterscotch morsels. Slowly add the mix into a 1 quart mason jar pressing down the mix firmly into the jar as you go. I used the bottom of a small glass for this. Add another handful of morsels to top the jar off and close. Print out this label and add to the top of the jar. Place the oven mitt on top of the fabric, then the jar in the center of the oven mitt standing up. Gather the four corners of the fabric at the top of the jar and securing with the twine. Decorate with your tree clipping. 

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Essential Crochet Basics Class for Skillshare


A few months back, I was contacted by Skillshare to see if I would be interested in creating a course for their platform. If you aren't familiar with Skillshare, they are an online learning community with tons of wonderful classes on a wide range of topics. I actually learned to knit by taking a Skillshare class in 2014, and talked about my experience in this post.  I was a bit hesitant at first, because I am quite a shy person. Throughout school, and even now, I would DREAD presentations, as I tended to sound as if I were running a marathon while giving my public speech. My husband, being the most incredibly supportive person he is, ended up convincing me to give it a try. Creating this class was no small feat for me. Not only am I camera shy, I am not so great with technology either, so the filming and editing portions of this class were a learning curve for me. That said, I LOVED designing this project and sharing my skills in this class. I don't know how people learned much of anything without the internet. The majority of my crochet skills were learned through kind people sharing their knowledge online. So although I feel uncouth as a teacher, I do hope this class can help others who are interested in this craft.

This class is brimming with basic crochet techniques including how to get started, basic stitches, and finishing techniques. You will learn how to crochet in rows and rounds. And you will walk away with the cutest oven-mitt to gift or keep for yourself. It is an intensive beginner class, but I wanted to teach all of the core crochet techniques that makeup most crochet patterns that students can come back to and reference as they work through other crochet projects.

So if you are interested in learning this craft, or if you are already a fellow crocheter and simply want to make the oven mitt class project, you can enroll in the class by following this link. The first 25 students can enroll at no cost. I really hope you enjoy the class!