Friday, August 21, 2009

It’s Just Peachy – Vol. 2 & 3

I am afraid the peaches are getting the better of me and going bad before I can use them, but the valiant efforts continue.

Volume 2 – Mish Mash Mush

The second installment of this series will cover the splendid wonders of baby food.  As you may know, I have two children – age 6 and now 8 months.  In the 6 years of being a parent, I have bough jarred baby food 2 times – once while traveling and my oldest was screaming bloody murder due to hunger and couldn’t be calmed and then again recently when I had to spend a longer time than expected in my doctor’s waiting room and the wait spilled over into my son’s lunch time.  Baby food at our house is always made on the spot.  This isn’t because we are psycho about organic, hand made foods or anything.  It’s simply because I think it’s ridiculous how much baby food costs and then you have to take into account that you have to go buy it, warm it and by that time I could have boiled and mashed a damn carrot myself.  Ok, getting off my soap box. 

So I have a lot of peaches now that need to be used.  One think I do when I suddenly have a lot of fruit or veg is to make baby food and then freeze it down.  The recipe is simple: Pit and blanche the peaches, peel of the skins and then liquefy them in a food processor.  A smart trick for this is to use ice cube trays to store the baby food in while it freezes.  You can then transfer the cubes over to a plastic bag or container for storage, but what kid wouldn’t find a heart or star in their morning porridge a fun surprise:

Almost like lucky charms!
Volume 3 – Pork Chops!

I will bet you weren’t expecting to see pork chops in a posting about peaches, were you?  Baby food and preserves is obvious, but what does swine got to do with it?  A commonly unknown fact is that peaches and pork chops go really nicely together, especially when curry is added to the mix.  Apples and pork are a classic combination and this tastes a bit like that, but with more flavor and a slightly creamier texture.   Unfortunately, I forgot about this little blog project I have going on and forgot to take a picture our peaches and pork we had for dinner last night, but here is the recipe:

  • 5 lean pork chops
  • 6 large peaches, pitted and peeled (peeling optional)
  • 2 small onions
  • 1 tsp green or orange curry paste (I use tbls, but I like mine hot)
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 pork bullion cube
  • a hand full of raisins
  • 3 dl water

Peel, chop and sauté the onions.  When they are translucent, add the peaches and stir so that the sugar in the peaches doesn’t burn.  Add the pork chops and garlic.  Mix the water with the billion until it is dissolved and mix it in when the pork chops are no longer pink.  Add the raisins and allow the mixture to simmer for 10 minutes.  Serve with rice our couscous Tags: ,,

Monday, August 17, 2009

That’s just peachy – Vol. 1

This is the first part of a five part non-knitting related rant.  I have a peach tree.  It makes a lot of peaches… a lot of peaches. 

P1010005 A small sampling

So many in fact that we have not – in the three summers we have lived here – been able to eat all of the peaches.  It seems like a real waste since we have this beautiful tree that gives us bright pink flowers in the spring followed by huge white peaches in the summer and we can’t even use or eat them all.  This year will be different – this year I have a mission: use or preserve ALL the usable peaches.  Over the next 5 postings, I will try to come up with interesting ways to preserve or use all of the peaches as they ripen.

Method 1: Pickled Peaches

Ok, I know the word “pickled” evokes thoughts of giant gurkens, picked in dill and spices, chilled and served cut lengthwise next to a sub sandwich.  Pickling can also be used to preserve fruit if the brine you are using is sweet – think canned peaches you can buy to make a peach pie in the middle of winter.


  • 2 kg peaches (blanched to remove skin, halved and pitted)
  • 10 dl sugar
  • 5 dl water
  • 5 dl pickling vinegar (the brown kind adds a pretty color)
  • 1 vanilla pod, slit
  • 3 cinnamon sticks, about 6 cm long
  • OPTIONAL: other whole spices such as anis star, cloves, nutmeg

Place the water, vinegar and sugar in a pot and stir until sugar is dissolved.  Put in remaining ingredients and boil for 10-15 minutes or until the peaches are soft enough to easily poke through with a fork.  Place peaches with fluid and whole spices in jars and place them in a hot water bath to seal the containers (think jam making here).  And Voila!  It’s just peachy:

 And it’s pretty to look at too!

Friday, August 7, 2009

My first grown up socks

When my father-in-law prepared to move several years ago, he decided it was time to go through some of my mother-in-laws things that were still around.  In the short time that I knew her, I learned that my mother-in-law was a funny character.  For example, she claimed she wasn’t “crafty” and was really bad at both knitting or sewing, so it came as a shock to me when my father-in-law asked if I wanted to inherit her little basket of knitting supplies.  At that point in time, I didn’t really knit but had thought about trying it so I accepted the offer. 

At first glance it seemed the basket held only evidence of my mother-in-law self proclaimed “craft-less-ness” such as dpns with flattened points and huge bends that had obviously been used to pry something open or to jab at something that shouldn’t have been jabbed at. 


At the bottom of the basket was a pattern for socks and leggings that was in Danish knitting lingo and being a novice knitting and therefore only knowing the most rudimentary knitting ligno in English, I decided to keep the pattern for now – it’s chunky, it’s funky, it’s retro… it might be fun someday.

Along with the pattern was a bit of a sock that she had been working on.  I don’t remember which sock it was, but it was one from this pattern.  It was actually very well knitted and unfortunately over the years and since we have moved outselves, the bits of her project I had have gone missing. 

Zooming forward to present day, I found this pattern again and now being more a more experienced knitter and knowing Danish knit speak, I decided to try Sock B:

Strippy socks!

After digging through my stash, I have found some grey and multi colored yarns and I have started my first ever grown up sock: Tags: ,

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Slippers for Daycare…. Check!

I sit here a lot these days and think about the fact that so much is happening around me these days.  My youngest child started in daycare (Dagpleje for the Danes reading this), my daughter has her first day of school next Tuesday and I start back to work next Wednesday after a long maternity leave. I will be an hour drive away from the two of them while they go through the first trials of these new phases and their overbearing mother won’t be around to be on high alert to try to prevent the unpreventable and highly unlikely. I crack jokes about it, but it’s tough.  Sigh…

If you don’t know me, then I can easily tell you that I am a type A personality and knitting has with time become a release for me – a way to assert control in an uncontrollable world if you will.  Someone you love get sick?  Knit them a scarf to make them feel better!  In this case, since my son is going to be out of my sight, it is now my duty to knit things that he will most likely need.  It would of course me much, much easier and probably also cheaper to just go buy things instead of knitting it, but going for that cheap fix means my brain is not preoccupied for that short time and I somehow begin to feel like I should be doing more myself.  What’s an overprotective, neurotic, hyper-vigilant mother to do?  Knit slippers.

This is my take on Saartje’s Bootees I like to call Daycare Slippers (Ravelry Link)

Happy feet

The origional pattern and on the blog and on Ravelry call for Rowan RYC Cashcotton, but since I do live in a colder climate and the daycare like most Danish homes features tiled and hardwood floors, I really wanted to go for something a bit warmer so I used Gepart Garn Retro (unfortunately now discontinued).  I found some red buttons I had bought years before and slapped those on, which reminds me of a charming and unplanned French Sailor look. 

Witness relocation babyNote: Don’t worry, he’s not done anything bad enough to land him in witness relocation yet. 

So now the real question is: did this do enough to satisfy my need to knit to assert control in this time of flux?  Doubtful, but we will find out as next week approaches.