Thursday, March 31, 2011

Mother's Day card

I actually got around to making some cards for Mother's Day, but for some reason I didn't take a pic of them all - clearly a senior moment. I have managed to sell a few on Ampthill Country Market stall - I still sell cards for £1.50 - I probably should ask for more but tbh I just want to get a little bit of money back from all that I spend as I like to 'craft' :)

The first one was a bit of a cheat as the papers were already glittered and patterned. Bought them in a sale last year, some are far too girlie for me, but managing to find a use for quite a lot of them. The stamp was free with the new craft mag that is out.

The second one is an image I got from a swap on the forum some time ago - I think from Susanne - I am sure they are Penny Black stamps.

It has been really windy today - big gusts - although the sun has been out too. I planted some daff bulbs from Poundland in the veg patch at the end of last summer and have just picked some and brought them in to the conservatory. I reckon it is cheaper to buy them from the supermarkets - but it was a nice achievement! My rhubarb is looking excellent this year it is now its 3rd season so should be big and strong!

I have started using Picasa to crop/edit my photos this year, and have put a little watermark on them - bit of fun really - maybe I should put the full web address down.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Another new outfit for Sindy!

I got this lovely yarn from the knitting machine shop and I just had to make Sindy a new dress with matching bag! I think I have officially gone mad! Having said that it gives the Country Market stall a bit of interest - I took her along and she modelled a dress and lots of people noticed.

I shall wrap it up and see if anyone will buy it!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Lemon Cake - take two

This is a slightly different recipe to my previous one - no idea if it would work just as well. But this one I decided to bake in a square tin which is around 18cm/ just under 8 inches square. I then cut it into 4 portions to sell on the market - I reckon each portion is enough for up to 4 slices depending how big you like them!

4oz 125g butter or narg
6oz 175g sugar
2 large eggs
6oz 175g self raising flour
2 lemon (I reckon 1 big lemon would be enough)
sugar approx 2 ozs

Oven is at 180c 350f gas 4

cream together the fat and sugar, add the egg and beat. Add the grated rind of one of the lemons, and also the juice of the lemon (or half if large lemon). Fold in the flour. Bake for 30 mins.

Now there are several ways to finish this. You can melt the sugar and lemon juice and poour over the cake whilst warm. You can mix the juice of the lemon with the sugar and pout on the cake whilst warm. You can add lemon rind to the mix too.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Forum birthday

This weekend is the forum birthday - it is 9 years old awww! Glad to see that people enjoy visiting being part of a community, so here is to the next birthday which will be double figures. So if you have not stopped by in a while, pop in and say Hi.

Not got anything to show today - although I have actually made some cards - just not taken any photos.

I ventured out into the garden yesterday as we had beautiful sunshine, and pleased to see lots of the plants are emerging after a cold winter.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Red Cabbage

DH is a pickled cabbage fan so thought I would give this a go. I don't really understand all the difference between all the different vinegars, so for a first go - I used standard brown malt vinegar. The recipe is dead easy.

Basically you chop the cabbage finely put layers in a colander with salt, and leave over night for some of the liquid to come out. Give it a rinse. Pack loosely into sterilised jars and top with the cool vinegar.

Pickle your vinegar - I used 1 tablespoon of pickling spices and 1 tablespoon of soft brown sugar to 1 pint of vinegar, simmer for about 5 minutes and let it cool, and strain.

Apparently you need to eat within a couple of months otherwise the cabbage will lose its crunch.

Saturday, March 05, 2011

Hair clips

I have been making crocheted flowers, and decided that they could be used as hairclips - hairclips seem to be 'in' at the moment. So yesterday I spotted the clips in Poundland and thought I would give them a go. You get 30 and are several colours. You can also get plain silver, gold or black.

I wasn't quite sure how to attach so I blobbed some glue on first and then used the ends to sew them. I have made some brooches too - and will put up some pics later.

I love this yarn - it is so pretty, it is the end of a spool designed for knitting machines, and cost me £1 and I have loads and loads. I must pop back to the shop to see if they get any more.

I actually cropped this photo in Picasa as I was looking how to do it for someone on the forum and added a watermark too! It was quite easy to use. I also found out that it will scan every photo on the PC and find every face so that I can name them - like you do on FB and Friend Reunited etc - once you start putting names to faces it will start searching through and come up with suggestions - not always right - but often is!

Thursday, March 03, 2011


More from last year....

I had a bit of tomato glut, loads of green I decided to make green tomato chutney. I hunted around and in the end used Clare's recipe on the forum, and realised it was the same as a book I had. Funnily enough I didn't find any on the internet like this though.

4lb green tomatoes
1.5lb onions
1lb cooking apples
1 pt vinegar
8 dried chillies
1oz dried root ginger
8oz raisins
1lb sugar
2tsp salt

Chop first 3 and boil 30mins with half the vinegar.
Add spices (in muslin) and raisins and simmer about an hour.
Add sugar, salt and rest of vinegar and cook until thick and all liquid has boiled away.

I use this as a basis and it is probably different every time I make it!
I have never used dried ginger (never see it these days) and just replace with about 4tsp dried ginger or some grated fresh. I usually use dried chilli flakes or powder/cayenne straight into the pan - again just whatever I have to hand. I have also added garlic which works too.
Malt or distilled malt vinegar is fine - never tried cider vinegar, but I think with chutneys you don't need as strong a vinegar as you do for pickling so no reason why it wouldn't work just as well. Brown sugar as it gives a nice dark colour and a slightly richer flavour I think, but not necessary.

I tweaked it a bit and added garlic and sultanas as I had no raisins, and not so keen on chilli.

Then the green tomatoes that were left on the side all ripened so I had a glut of those!

I made red tomato chutney - which is sweeter than the green, but perfect with a strong cheese. Again I searched around for a recipe and did one similar to the green, but put a couple of eating apples in instead of all cooking apples - as I had a couple of dodgy ones in the fruit bowl. I put in slightly less sugar, and I think I added some paprika.

I made more labels - as I gave several of these away for Christmas. This was my first adventure into chutney making and enjoyed it.