Saturday, 20 November 2010

A Miserable Day.

It has been such a dreary grey, wet and dismal day today so I decided to do nice warming things to cheer us up a bit. I made a ginger cake - less exciting than coffee and walnut with butter icing, or a batch of gorgeous brownies, but hopefully kinder on the waistline and cholesterol levels. It is cooling and will be just about ready to cut when I have a cuppa later.

I also made a batch of rolls to go with this ....................
........... it's not soup yet as I have to get all the chicken bones out then blitz it with the hand blender. It would have made sense to have boiled the carcass first, strained it and then added the vegetables which would have made the whole job so much easier, but in my enthusiasm I just plonked everything in together. I shall be able to put the bones in the new handy caddy for cooked food waste - provided by our local council for their new recycling scheme which comes into effect next week. We have a smart and dinky little caddy which sits on the draining board and a larger bin into which it is emptied and when full put out for collection. I can't see us ever filling it as we have hardly any cooked food waste - we usually eat it all!

When I have tidied the kitchen I can do a bit more work on this piece of embroidery which will eventually be framed and glazed, probably triple mounted or in a box frame as I don't want the ribbon roses and beads to be pressed against the glass. It is a birthday present for one of our daughters.
She collects those pretty ceramic Victorian style shoes and will like this I think - I hope!

It started off properly stretched on a frame but some of the stitching was almost impossible like that so I took it off and worked with it in my hand - my preferred way of working even if it is not strictly correct. I am working it on off-white silk muslin bonded to cotton fabric and am wondering whether the texture of the background is too noticeable and that a smooth fabric would have been better. It's a bit late now to worry about that. I will press it very lightly when it is finished and stretch it over a piece of foam board or stiff card and may even add a layer of thin batting to pad it very lightly. I have until the end of January to finish it so there is plenty of time. I came across the design in a back number of Stitch magazine - issue 46, April/May 2007 - and have altered some of the stitch patterns slightly as I didn't have exactly the threads, etc., that were used in the article.

Changing the subject quite a lot - I have just read on the front page of today's Daily Telegraph
that pupils will lose marks in exams for poor spelling, punctuation and grammar. I am horrified that there have obviously been times when these shortcomings have been allowed to become acceptable. Perhaps I am just too old-fashioned, or naive.


The Weaver of Grass said...

Those shoes are delightful Heather. How could your daughter fail to be thrilled to bits with them.
That food looks tempting and I am so glad that you, too, do things the wrong way round sometimes when you are cooking. I have just made my fourth Christmas cake and accidentally did the rich recipe although the farmer had said he would like the less rich one.

Gina said...

I think ginger cake is every bit as exciting as other cakes. The shoes look very pretty Heather. I'm sure your daughter will be delighted.

Carol Q said...

you've made me hungry Heather lol.
lucky daughter. your stitching reminds me very much of old samplers. re school - I recently told my 13 year old that I thought his writing was too colloquial and informal and the response was that if it isn't an English lesson they don't pull them up on their writing skills which I found rather appalling.

Amas Veritas said...

Welcome to the madhouse, honey. Being from rural Arkansas, I encounter atrocious grammar on a daily basis. Gives me scabs in my ears. *chuckle*

Your ginger cake is STRIKING. I think I'll retreat home from the brief workday and bake some soda bread to accompany my own vegetable brew. Danke for the inspiration, dearie!

Btw, my name's Heather, too.

Maureen said...

Love those shoes Heather and trying to ignore the cake etc but it all looks lovely even tho' I'm not a lover of ginger cake, rather have the other one you mentioned but I'm good and don't eat cake these days unless I'm really forced to!!!

Lyn said...

Oh it all looks so delicious, can't wait to get my kitchen back so I can bake again. and those shoes !!!

Gina said...

Hi Heather, me again because I don't know how else to reply to your comments on my blog, but just to say the carrot cake recipe is about as healthy as cake gets - made with oil, relatively low sugar with the added benefit of carrots and sultanas. (If you leave out the marscapone cream of course!)

Julie said...

I actually prefer ginger cake to coffee and walnut cake so it sounds exciting to me! I do the same as you when I make chicken soup, which isn't often enough.
Your embroidery is beautiful and I'm sure it will be well received. Thank you for your good wishes for my mum.

Linda said...

What a scrummy post Heather.....gorgeous food and delightful embroidery.
Thank you for cheering me up :-)