Sunday, 28 April 2013

Jelly Crystal Meringues

These are a super easy treat that are quick to whip up, even if, as per normal meringues, they take a while to cook.  Using jelly crystals means they are flavoured differently depending on what flavour you pick.  

3 egg whites (size 8s preferably, use 4 eggs if smaller).
1/2 c caster sugar
1 packet of jelly crystals

Combine the sugar and the jelly crystals until well combined.  In another bowl, beat the egg whites until soft peak.  Once this stage is reached, slowly add the sugar/crystal combination a table spoon at time, ensuring that each addition is well mixed into the egg whites.  Once it is all combined, keep mixing for a further two minutes, ensuring well combined.

Line a tray with baking paper and pipe the meringue onto it.  Bake at 120 °C for 40 - 50 minutes depending on your oven. They don't need much cooling, are good to go practically straight away.

I have baked this as a whole like a pavlova, and it came out just fine.  Be aware that due to the gelatin in the jelly, the middle is a different consistency to a normal pav, it is more chewy, but it still has that delightful crust.  Actually it has MORE of that deliciousness, which is my favourite part.

Sunday, 21 April 2013

Green Hallows

O.k so this one has been 8 months in the making. Last winter I made my son a Pink & Purple Hallows Cardigan  I found Here on Ravelry and he LOVED it so much so that he asked for a Green and Black one.
As it started to get too warm before I finished it I put it aside enjoyed our unseasonably hot summer and didn't think anything more of it. But now it's cooling down again I decided to pick it up and finish it and aside from sewing in some ends and picking buttons it's done.

I had decided I didn't like the sleeves in the pattern and that I would make up my own pattern for the sleeves which I've never done before but I thought worst comes to worst I rip it back and start again.

My sleeve pattern went something like this:

Pick up 64 stitches along shoulder edge (1 stitch per 2 rows).
Knit 9 rows.
Decrease every 9 rows until 40 stitches left.
Work 9 rows in 2x2 rib, change to body colour and knit another 3 rows following the 2x2 rib.
Cast off.

Thursday, 18 April 2013

Baby Afghan

The pattern for this afghan is called Stashaholic's Brain Dead Afghan but I don't really want to call a gift for a baby that, even if the Zombie loving part of me kinda likes it.  What the name means is that it is so repetitive and easy that you will mow through rows and rows of it and then all of a sudden come to  a point where you think it's long enough and that's it.

I used a 4.5mm hook and alternated between 5 rows of maroon and three rows of grey (it's for a baby girl and I wanted the "girly" colour to dominate a bit more).  I used 200g of the maroon and not quite 100g of the grey. I should also mention that the maroon was 100% wool and the grey is 100% acrylic but it feels alright, looks alright and the telling will be in the wash and wear of it.

Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Stegosaurus birthday cake

I made this Stegosaurus cake for my sons 5th birthday, inspired by a photo I saw on pinterest.  Link

I started out with a 20cm chocolate cake iced green buttercream, luckily it baked with a lopsided top as this worked well for the stegosaurus body.
Used a template from google images and traced around the template onto coloured card for head, tail and spikes.  Then just pushed cardboard spikes into icing.
A very quick and easy cake, think of all the other possibilities of cake and cardboard you could do :-)

String Art

Last year for Christmas I was trying to save money, but also give out more meaning full gifts. So I took the hand made gifts route.
Its hard to buy for my partners family-they have all they need, I didn't really want to go out and spend money on something they aren't going to use, or will just clutter the house. So combining my love of Pinterest I've finally decided to start making some of those things I've pinned.

So this is my take of this pin:

This on pieces of MDF that is A3 size. 
I love them! What do you think?

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

The always popular Calorimetry headband

This pattern is hugely popular on Ravelry - there are 15781 finished posts of it on Rav and I have made around 20 myself.  They knit up super quickly, only takes around a couple of hours and uses about 50g wool, 100g if you double strand which I do, making it super chunky.  On 5mm kneedles, this is a great pattern for new knitters, it's the closest "instant gratification" project out there.

Some important info before you jump into the pattern; the original pattern knits up HUGE.  So, for adult size ones I cast on 90 and repeated row five 9 times and even this has proved pretty generous on those with smaller heads.  For kids, I cast on 70 and repeated row five 7 times.  Because this is a rib knit, it has a bit of give, so knitting it smaller is highly recommended.  Conversely, I have in the past put buttons on both ends on opposite sides; the pattern makes a number of different holes for the buttons in a decorative manner, so it can be made smaller if needs be.

You b*tches better appreciate the photo of myself that I included.

Monday, 15 April 2013

Patchwork Pillow with Fleece Scraps

A new cushion for Squirmy's room.

Inspired by this felted patchwork cushion:
 I wanted to do something similar and figured since I have a whole heap of polarfleece I might as well use that. Would work with all kinds of fabric and multiple layouts too.

Nic xx

Simple Crochet Beanie

My very first ever completed crochet project!! :D

A great project for a beginner crocheter like me - it only uses chain and double-crochet (I cheated a bit, and just did a chain of 4 and joined it into a circle to start off with - the magic loop confused me!) and then one round of single-crochet to finish off.

Instructions can be found here on Lina's Land (I followed a link from Ravelry to that) - haven't tried the flowers, but they look quite cute!


Saturday, 13 April 2013

Slow Cooker Fudge

Found a recipe for Chocolate Fudge in the slow cooker on Pinterest the other day and thought it seemed like a good idea. Not bad I guess, but I'm actually not sure why you would do it as melting chocolate isn't really that big of a deal.
Here's the original recipe:
I didn't have honey so used maple syrup, and I also used coconut cream instead of coconut milk and neither change seemed to matter.

The chocolate tastes slightly burnt even though I turned the slow cooker off 10mins early, which was annoying as using the slow cooker was supposed to prevent burning. I reckon the recipe would work perfectly fine if you did the first step in the microwave or in a pot instead. Much faster too.

It only took about an hour to cool down, and an hour to set in the fridge. No idea why it took so long for the person who wrote the original recipe!

Anyway, it still tastes alright so not a complete fail. I'm still thankful that I have fudge to eat tonight!

Nic xx

Spiderman Blanket

Loved this pattern.  Easy to follow and crocheted up really quickly.  You can find the pattern here.

I used 3 x 100g red and 2 x 100g blue Moda Vera.  Thinking of doing the black and white (Venom) style one at a later date.

Friday, 5 April 2013

Yellow, Grey and White Chevron Style Crochet Blanket

A bassinette sized blanket made for our darling snb member, Nat.

Expecting her second baby boy very soon, N has a love for yellow and grey cheveron, and will be the theme for her new ones nursey.

Using 8ply Moda Vera Marvel yarn and a 5.5mm hook, this was crocheted with love by Debs. Pattern can be found here.