Friday, October 28, 2016

Apple Crisp and Weekend Socks

Hi, Knitters, 
Here is the apple crisp recipe I have been using for several decades. I so enjoy pulling out an old and loved handwritten recipe card from my recipe file. Don't you love this, too? It's so much better than using the internet to find recipes (although I do end up doing that, too). Recipe cards filled with splatters, worn corners, and fading script really make my day, they tell a story. Anyway, my family loves this apple crisp and it is definitely an annual tradition every time fall rolls around. One time many years ago I changed it up and used a different recipe that included oats and everyone was disappointed so I went right back to the tried and true. I haven't wavered since.

I hope you handwrite out your own Apple Crisp recipe card to love and use in the years ahead. Mine is just on a standard 3 by 5-inch notecard, nothing fancy.

And of course as every good knitter approaches things, I don't exactly follow the recipe. 

Here are my changes:

I use a 13 by 9 inch glass pan. I don't grease the pan.

I peel and cut the apples in small-ish pieces. 

I place the apple pieces in the pan until it is almost full to the brim. I don't count or measure the apples at all. 

I double the strudel topping. 

I add a dash more salt to the strudel.

It takes at least an hour to bake if not a little longer. 

Make sure that the strudel is slightly browned on top and that the apples are bubbling around the edges before taking it out of the oven.

We usually serve it with vanilla ice cream or custard (although cinnamon ice cream is wonderful if you can find it) and with a dollop of freshly made whip cream. The apple crisp is delicious without adding any extras on top. I usually have mine plain.

I store the leftovers in a sealed container in the refrigerator and it is even better the next day.


Now for socks!

When I was at Knit City the only thing I had plans to purchase was a skein of sock yarn from Caterpillargreen Yarns that I had seen on their Instagram. I had so little time to look around the market but I rushed to the Caterpillargreen booth when I had a few seconds only to find out that the yarn I wanted was sold out. I wasn't surprised at all. 

Jodi from the Grocery Girls either was with me or I was talking to her later, I can't remember how, but she found out I wanted that yarn. She pulled the skein out of her bag and gave it to me. I swear I have never met more generous people in my life. Tracie and Jodi would give you the shirts off their backs with no thought at all. Really. Anyway, Jodi would not take no for an answer so I ended up with the Caterpillargreen Yarn I had my heart set on. I was appreciative and excited about it.

On my final day at Knit City I was on the way to my classroom and walked by the Caterpillargreen Yarns booth and Catherine, the owner and dyer, was standing there with a bag for me. Inside the bag was a gift for me, the coveted skein of sock yarn now called Weekend. Needless to say I was thrilled! I gave Jodi back her skein right away. It was such a nice gesture on her part and now we could be sock twins. 

I quickly asked how the skein was dyed and Catherine said it is mirror image so if you wind the skein in one cake you could start one sock from the inside of the cake and the other from the outside of the cake to get matching socks. I decided to break my skein of Weekend into two cakes as I wound it. 

Thank you so much to Caterpillargreen Yarns for the beautiful and clever skein of sock yarn.

It appears that the Weekend colorway pre-order is currently sold out but definitely check out the entire store over at Caterpillargreen Yarns. It is fun and impressive.

Click here to see the Weekend skein and a knit sample of the sock I am knitting. Maybe she will open the orders again in the future.

Click here for Signature Needle Arts (my favorite needles!) I use US size 1/2.25mm, 6-inch dpns for my sock knitting. 

My yarn/kitchen scale is OXO brand and I purchased it from William Sonoma about 6 years ago. Click here to see the exact same scale on the OXO website. I love mine and actually own two of them now.

On a side note I was sent a review copy of the book in the photo above, People Knitting, by Barbara Levine. It contains a century of photographs of people knitting and I have simply loved looking through the pages. The book is small in size and everything about it is kind of perfect. The photos are fascinating, interesting and fun. What a perfect gift for the holiday season ahead. Thank you to Princeton Architectural Press for sending me a copy of this beautiful book.

I wound off a small ball of yarn at the beginning of the skein to start things off. The skein weighed 115 grams and I would have had to knit 10 or 11-inch or longer cuffs to use all of the yarn and get to that last color. I don't like super long cuffs on socks as much. I favor the cuff length to be between 6 or 7-inches. So I wound off until the main cake weighed 45 grams. I did this for both socks. 

I ended up knitting the cuff to 7-inches before placing the waste yarn for the heel. My next decision was how I was going to work the yarn in the heel. Would I pull from the outside of the cake for an orange heel, use the blue section that I wound off in the smaller ball or should I stripe the orange outer end and the wound off blue section? Lots of options from which to choose!

I am using my Smooth Operator Socks pattern that includes a tutorial for my version of an afterthought heel with several options for decreases and finishing of the toe and heel. One popular option is for a Kitchener stitch-free finish.

I ended up striping the orange end from the outside of the cake and the blue end from the wound off section at the start. I switched the yarn every two rounds.

The sock blocker is from The Loopy Ewe!

For the Smooth Operator Socks pattern I used the single line decrease instructions and the rounded corner Kitchener stitch option for finishing off the heel. I will do the same for the toe.

Well, there you go. I will be back next week with more. I have a bunch of new patterns coming out very soon along with some new and exciting changes. I hope you will be excited about all of the new things happening. I will be sharing all of it very soon. I can't wait!

Have a great weekend ahead.
xo ~ susan
p.s. There is a huge Craftsy sale going on from today, Friday, Oct. 28 through Monday, Oct. 31, 2016. I don't use the affiliate links much but here is my link if you'd like to purchase any Craftsy class for under $20 during this time. Thank you so much if you use the link! Click here for the link to Craftsy!