ELECTRIC BREAD

I have always loved the idea of hearth baked artisan breads with cornmeal and nut crusts, powdery top slits leading into squishy soft slices all slathered in butter ..yummy. I didn’t want some dry, tasteless, cold commercial bread, I wanted chewy, fresh hot butter melting bread! 

When our daughter became vegan our bread life changed (well our whole life changed, but for now we will just stick to the bread part) forget the cow butter, forget coupons, forget brand loyalty, forget what’s on sale, it’s now a matter of what’s in it and how/where is it produced. We needed dairy free bread, we wanted bread with limited ingredients, local if possible, 0 preservatives & nothing artificial and on top of that it had to taste good. Me, I wanted easy, I wanted diversity and I wanted fresh bread in the dead of summer.

In walks a bread machine, yes the expensive contraption that was all the rage back in the 90’s. Except now it’s a bit cheaper, a bit quieter, a bit smaller and it doesn’t shimmy itself off the counter. I can have hot fresh-baked bread in 3 hrs or I can timer it the night before and wake up to the smell of baking bread, I can have perfectly supple “turn it into anything thing I want” dough in 1½ hours, all just by putting the ingredients into a metal bucket and pushing START.  I don’t have to knead, I don’t have to cover and let rise in a warm place, I can make 1½ or 2 lb loaves, I can even make quick breads & jams in this thing! In the winter I set the machine for the dough cycle, let it go, then pop it into a loaf pan and bake it in my oven to warm up the house. Did I tell you I LOVE ELECTRIC BREAD! 

Black Strap Rye Bread Mid-Cycle

teeny BIG post

I kind of have a slight obsession with miniature, I always fall for things that are teeny replicas of a larger something, like little teacups & tiny tin kitchen sets. I guess I also really love it when something that’s normally small, is blown up to huge proportions, remember the giant swatch wristwatch wall clocks of the 90’s. Swoon.

I’ve been having the urge to play with scale in my knitting as well, I just finished up a teeny version of the nineteen hundred house in #10 cotton thread on 000 needles, it didn’t get as little as I wanted (postage stamp size) but to get it to that size, I think I would’ve had to knit sewing thread and use straight pins as my knitting needles ..no thanks. Still, it turned out small & sweet!

Also in trying to keep my motivation charged up on the beekeeper’s quilt, and my serious longing for cooler temps, I’ve worked out a snowflake honeycomb! Again playing with the normal scale of something as tiny and lovely as a little snowflake, making it big and grand in a pale yellow yarn. Yes I made a yellow snowflake, but not on purpose, it was just the color I was working on next in the quilt when the idea hit!

Would you like to learn how to make a lovely snowflake edging on your honeycombs?

What you need to do:

When you’ve finished your honeycomb puff & you’ve bound off, DON’T CUT YOUR YARN! You will have the last bind off loop remaining on your hook (If you’ve done a knitted bind off, just slip out your needle and insert a crochet hook) I used a 3.5mm hook.

(you could start with an already finished puff too, just join your yarn to a corner and start the snowflake edging)

Now you’re going to start to work a crochet edging around your honeycomb, it’s basically a cluster of 3 picots on the puffs corners & chains on the side edges of the puff, as follows:

Ch3, slst in first ch of ch 3 (picot made)

Ch6, slst in first ch of ch 6 (picot made)

Ch3, slst in first ch of ch 3 (picot made)

Slst in next sc on the body of your honeycomb

This is your first 3 picot snowflake cluster on the corner of your honeycomb puff.

Ch 4, skip next 4 sc on the side edge of your puff, slst in next sc on the side edge.

(this will put you smack dab in the middle on the side of your puff, if your stitches are slightly off, its OK you don’t have to skip exactly 4 just as long as you slst relatively close to the middle on the side of your puff, it will look perfect!)

This is the chain, slst, chain that will get you from one 3 picot cluster corner to the next.

Ch 4, skip next 4 sc on side edge of your puff, slst in next sc (you should be at the corner point of your puff now)

Repeat the 3 picot cluster & chain, slst, chain series, 5 more times around the outside of your honeycomb puff. Join the last ch4 with a slst at the base of your very first picot cluster.

You can attach this into your beekeepers quilt like normal and let the scallops of the flake overlap onto the other honeycombs. OR you can make it an enchanting seasonal ornament/gift topper. Leave it plain or stitch on your favorite chart!

(If you are going to go for the ornament/topper, please make ONE of your ch 6 corner loops, a ch14 so it will create a larger loop perfect for hanging)

I hope you like it, let it snow!

invention exchange

Growing up in Minnesota in the late 80’s you could not help but be an MST3K fan, it basically was a prerequisite. It was based here, the crew were from here and they referenced Minnesota all the time. I was a teen when it first came out & my boyfriend (now husband) was just as big a nerd for it as I was.

We recently had a chance to see the Cinematic Titanic Live show when it came to Minneapolis. It was a Saturday night, the film was Rattlers and it was being recorded for release as one of their live DVD’s. We had a stage side table (right by the recording mics) and I can’t wait to see if I can hear us busting out laughing on the DVD! We were able to meet the cast (all of whom were original to MST3K) after the show. There was laughter, lude jokes, music & magic! ..It was perfect!

I spent yesterday lounging with Jason streaming old episodes of mystery science just like we were 17 again.

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