Baking this week

Now that the Kid is back at school, I’ve had some extra time to do more around the house. Not so much of the stuff I should be doing like cleaning and organizing, but cooking.

This week’s baking day included crusty rustic Italian bread, pita crisps and a Cantonese style sponge cake. Nothing fancy. That night I made a soothiing hairy melon soup for dinner.


Salted Caramel Ice Cream

Caramel is one of my favourite dessert flavours. I love how it’s sweet, yet has subtle bitter tones and creaminess. And when you add a bit of salt, it miraculously takes the already intriguing taste sensation to another level.  When I saw this recipe for salted caramel ice cream, I had to give it a whirl.

This has got to be one of the best ice creams I’ve made this summer (the chocolate ice cream from The Perfect Scoop by David Lebovitz is pretty hard to beat). It’s just sweet enough and the complex caramelized sugar flavours really shine. The hint of maldon salt adds just enough savoury contrast. And boy is it ever creamy. The recipe intro describes it as “sultry.” They’re spot on.

Mom’s Monday Morning

I’m knitting Laura Chau‘s Monday Morning Cardigan for my mom with Cascade 220 worsted weight yarn.

I cast on last night and I’m about 1″ into the sweater. So far so good and after reading the pattern over and over, it seems like a pretty straight forward knit. Just seems a bit daunting with 243 stitches per row! I hope it fits!!

Will post a shot later when there’s actually more than 1″ to photograph.

Blueberry Peach Cobbler

Roland’s dad is in town so we’ve been eating out a lot and not cooking at home much. Tonight we were invited to our friends’ home for dinner so I jumped at the chance to bake a dessert.

We’re lucky enough to have a ton of local fruit around the house so I made this fabulous cobbler from Rustic Fruit Desserts by Cory Schreiber and Julie Richardson. The original recipe is for all blueberries but I didn’t have enough and substituted some peaches instead. I knew the filling would be spectacular, but I was really impressed with the cornmeal “biscuit” topping…crunchy, tender and light all at the same time. Absolutely delicious. Can’t wait to make it again with other fruit.

If you’re into homey, old fashioned fruit desserts, you’ll want to check out the book. Lots of great seasonal recipes using fruit that’s typically available in Vancouver. Visit Barbara-Jo’s Books to Cooks to find the book (I hear they’re having a cooking class featuring the book in mid-September!).

Ocean Waves

I’m getting more into the habit of buying yarn with a definite project in mind. This wavy scarf in ocean hues is the result of the lovely yarn I bought a few weeks ago. The pattern came with the yarn and it’s a very simple drop stitch repeat knit entirely in garter stitches. I think my coworker will stay toasty warm in it this fall while he’s reminded of the ocean.

Kinetic scarf

This scarf is finally done!! I cast on in April, knit 2/3 of it and put it aside to knit something summery. I couldn’t allow myself to cast on anything new until this was complete and now it is!

This is my version of Kinetic from Knitty made from 2 skeins of Berroco Ultra Alpaca. Instead of repeating the pattern twice for each row, I knit it just once to make a narrower scarf width.

I absolutely love the texture and rhythm of the fabric. The texture would probably pop more if I used a less fuzzy yarn but I wanted it ultra-cozy. Basically it was an easy knit…all knit or purl but it took forever since I had to follow the chart for each and every row.

But for my dad, it was totally worth it.

Three Bags Full Sale

Have I ever mentioned that I love Three Bags Full? They have a lovely broad selection of gorgeous yarns and helpful staff. So waiting in line for their 3rd Anniversary sale was worth it (way better than my ordeal of waiting in line for opening day ride on the Canada Line!!).

This is what I bought:

-Rowan felted tweed (blue for my dad, brown for Roland)
-Cascade 220 (grey) for my mom’s sweater
-Noro kuryon sock (red/brown/orange for a large shawl, green for a small shawl/wrap)

I am proud of my self-restraint–I stuck to my list of projects and didn’t buy any extra yarn. But then again there’s day 2 of the sale tomorrow….