Tuesday, June 6, 2017

French Market Tote for Taproot Magazine


The summer issue for Taproot magazine, GROW, is out, and I am delighted to be part of it. In its pages, you will find my contribution, a summery linen market bag with French stripes. Most days, I am so grateful I was born, raised, and set my own roots down in southern Louisiana. I highly dislike the cold and prefer the sunshine and hot sticky climate of home. This hot sticky climate of ours also allows for a very long growing season with produce stands lining the highways almost year round. It's wonderful! What's even more wonderful is how generous our little southern community is. Friends and neighbors are quick to share bagfuls of satsumas, figs, tomatoes, eggplant, and even some fresh caught catfish or reds. Although we can grow most of the year, summertime gives not only the highest yield but the most delicious pickins in my opinion. Our pantry is filled with sweet corn, summer squash, watermelon, peaches, carrots, and so much more. One of the many reasons that summertime will always be my favorite. This special growing season and my sweet kind community inspired this design. I hope that your version is filled with all the love and goodness mine is filled with.


A few technical notes about the design: The tote is worked in pieces with the main panels having striped colorwork, and then seamed together with a visible seam.  I chose a bright red for my stripes, but I think blue or white would look just as lovely. I also added some leather straps for the handles, but a pair of crocheted i-chords would make beautiful and sturdy handles as well. You can find the pattern on Ravelry and buy your copy of GROW here.


Monday, May 22, 2017

Green Tomato Salsa


I love a good salsa verde. So fresh and scrumptious. Over the weekend, I found myself making a batch using some tart green tomatoes I had on hand in lieu of tomatillos. I adapted this recipe for a smaller batch of salsa, and the result was delicious. I may have snacked on it all weekend long as hot sticky thunderstorms passed through. If you happen to find yourself with a few handfuls of green tomatoes, you should give this version of salsa verde a try. It's relatively easy to throw together for a party or just for a snack when you're stuck at home in the rain.


Ingredients:

4 cups chopped green tomatoes (about 4 medium green tomatoes)
1 white onion peeled and quartered
2 cloves garlic peeled
1 jalapeno pepper seeded and quartered
1/2 bunch cilantro
1/4 cup lime juice
sea salt to taste

In a food processor, add the onion, garlic, and jalapeno. Pulse until all veggies are finely chopped. Add the veggies from the food processor to a pot with the chopped tomatoes. Add the lime juice and bring to a boil. Turn the heat down and simmer for about 10 minutes. While the salsa is simmering, place the cilantro in the food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Remove the salsa from the heat and add in the cilantro and salt to taste.

Friday, May 5, 2017

Little Things

The Little Things posts are links to a few things I am loving lately. A good day revolves around good and happy moments, gratefulness, and  sometimes delighting in little things that make your heart smile. I hope these links bring a little joy to your day, too. 

A glad heart is excellent medicine.
Proverbs 17:22

A great article about propagating rosemary AND using raw honey as a natural root hormone.

This beautiful flower-filled interview with Jessica of A Fine Medley.

I made this carrot soup this week during a stormy night and served it along side a fresh spring salad. I highly recommend! 

My mom gifted me the Modern Natural Dyer book for my birthday, and it has inspired me so much. I saw this little zipper pouch the other day, and now I'm dreaming of making a naturally dyed version to practice my embroidery skills on. 

Have you heard of this organization before? They help bring basic needs to individuals, organizations, and communities to help them focus on bigger goals with efficient and structured programs. 

This baby lamb from Ashley Yousling's farm is just melting my heart away. 

I listened to this podcast this week about zero waste, and I'm already making small changes to reduce waste in our home. So good. 

I added this pattern to my summer make list, in a soft white and leaving off the ribbing. 

Happy Friday sweet friends!

Photo by Jess Kneebone

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!