Domestic Bliss..........

Ok -- so I have been ranting a lot lately. No -- the meds are working fine, thank you. There just seems to be a lot going on that raises Miss Eff's hackles.

I am a little calmer today so ......... wanna see what I have been doing???

Socktoberfest is going well. I am done with pair of socks number 3. All wool -- hand spun, hand-dyed by Argyle Fiber Mill. What a quick knit! I did them on size 5 needles. After always doing socks on size 1-2, size 5 seemed like heaven!!

Now back to my teeny tiny needles......... this pair is also been a quick knit. I like doing very simple socks when I am using a self-striping yarn. So I have really whipped through this pair. I should finish socks number 4 by the end of the weekend. There is no challenge with these .... but challenge isn't all its cracked up to be! And besides, I don't call my knitting needles "sanity sticks" for nothing!!!

I have put myself on a yarn diet. No more yarn. So I am doing nothing but finishing projects and using up existing stash. Except I did order another 3 skeins of yarn from Sheepie Neighbor. Yea .... I know. I said I was going to make socks out of Rocky's yarn. Change of plan. Still don't know what I am going to do....... but Rocky deserves better treatment.

And speaking of Sheepie Neighbor ..... looks like the girls in the neighborhood are in for a rockin' good time! The rent-a-rams are good-lookin' guys! Stud muffins, we might say!!! But I think Ferdie should have a home up the road a bit........... Honey??????? (So far Eldest Daughter and I have not been able to talk him into a dog. I'm thinkin' a fiber pet may be a tougher sell!)

I have been doing some preserving........ I did 15 lbs of apples the other day and made maple applesauce in my roaster. That is the way to cook apples!

Maple Applesauce Recipe

5 pounds apples, cored and cut into 8 wedges

1/2 cup apple cider or natural apple juice

1/4 to 1/2 cup maple syrup, depending on the tartness of the apples, Grade B recommended for strongest flavor

4 whole cinnamon sticks
1. Preheat the oven to 350° F
2. In the large roasting pan, toss the apples with the cider and maple syrup, then lay the cinnamon sticks around in the apples. Roast until the apples are very soft and mash easily, 30 to 45 minutes.
3. Remove the cinnamon sticks. If you left the peels on, mash the apples slightly with a potato masher, then run them through the food mill. If you peeled the apples before roasting, then process the cooked apples in a food processor. Applesauce is finished, just set aside to cool, then put into containers and refrigerate or freeze. If you want to can it .... fill to a 1/2" head space and place in a boiling water bath for 20 minutes.
15 pounds of apples yielded 11 pints of applesauce. This has a really nice mellow flavor and is not overly sweet.

And in other news........ I have been asked to write a column on food and agricultural concerns for Blog for Iowa. Blog for Iowa is a progressive blog .... if you are a fan of Rush Limbaugh, don't bother going there. I will just piss you off! I am a blue-dog democrat -- I like progressive social action, yet I think a balanced budget is nice. I have this mission to tell our concerns from down on the farm .... and it is giving me a voice and I am going to use it.

So if anyone sees a tasty little morsel of news about food issues....... drop me a link to cmlafrenz (at) netins (dot) net. And drop in and read my posts ..... it will probably be there on the 1st and the 15th of every month.

That's all the domestic bliss I can bear to stand for one day! I'll rant some more tomorrow.


Michelle said…
Maybe it will be EASIER to talk Honey into a fiber pet. After all, they stay outside behind fences; no chance of it being a house pet (is there?). But you do know sheep can't live happily alone, so Ferdie would need a friend....

And hey, Miss Effie! Homemade applesauce is perfectly delicious without any sweetener at all! I just core and remove any bad spots and throw my apples, skin and all, in the blender and then process the raw pulp in a cold water bath. I know, maple syrup isn't high fructose corn syrup, but STILL. :-)

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