crochet | mama’s easy hat GIVEAWAY

easy peasy beanie hat

unless you live outside the US,
or don’t care,
we’ve been in the midst of
a hard winter:
record low temps
fluctuating day temps
fallout from the sky that won’t quit.
so for two weekends in a row
dw+i stayed in:
we park gandalf friday night
and don’t start him up again till monday morn.
there may have been some half-hearted cleaning
serious Blue Blood viewing
(because TOM SELLECK)
i even slept in till 9am once, or twice.
i managed to finish a book
then this hat happened.

easy peasy beanie hat

i’m not a hat person,
it’s the round face,
flat & short hair thing.
but i had a skein
of a single color
purchased out of the country
so something had to be done with it.
as it were
i had to add a white border
as i ran out of the purple.
it’s a chunky hat,
i can’t say if it’s warming
and when dw saw me wearing it
he got all bob marley-ish.
because i’m not gonna wear this
and it’ll be spring in a month anyway
i’m giving this away.
to anyone, in the US,
or otherwise.

someone will randomly be picked
from here, or,
from ig, or,
from fb
ends COB monday.
just answer this:

what book are you currently reading??

easy peasy beanie hat

this is the pattern.

other yarn creations:
crocheted broomstick lace infinity cowl – original crochet pattern
crocheted mine craft beanies – link to pattern
crocheted ombre granny square baby blanket – no pattern, but link to inspiration
crocheted owl rattle
– link to pattern
crocheted viking hat – link to pattern
knitted wedding shawl – link to pattern

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roasted banana bread

Roasted Banana Bread

we’re back to feeling human again.
well, almost human.
i’m not quite 100%
but we’ll get there.

lately it’s been a fallback
on all things comfort
the comfort foods of my childhood
soups
dw’s old high school sweatshirt
tom selleck on netflix
and this bread.
it’s a little pedestrian,
banana bread,
and that’s what i needed,
something familiar
with ingredients already on hand.
the roasting is optional
but it perfumes the whole abode
beautifully,
and when sick,
i not in the habit of
denying myself such comfort.

Roasted Banana Bread

Roasted Banana Bread
loosely adapted from terri wu

*note: i’ve been making this bread for a few years now, i cheat and use other recipes but i find myself falling back to this one. like all sweet breads this is flexible, you can add nuts or dried fruit, chocolate chips, whatever is available in your pantry. i like that. also, the liquid can be anything – water, coffee and admittedly, this past week i forgot to brew fresh and just added water to my already used up coffee grounds. obviously, the most flavorable loaf was the one with the super strong brewed coffee but you won’t die if you use weak coffee or just plain water.
**note: you don’t have to roast the bananas, especially if they’re super ripe. i just like the flavor it imparts, and it makes to mashing them up so nicely. this recipe doesn’t use eggs so i’m not worried about cooking the eggs in the batter before they even make it to the oven. should you decide to roast your bananas for your go-to banana bread recipe that uses eggs, be sure to cool them sufficiently before adding to the batter.

1/4 cup ​flaxseeds
1/4 cup + 2 TBL hot coffee (or hot water)
1/2 cup apple sauce (or neutral oil, like grapeseed or sunflower) ​
​​1 2/3 cups einkorn flour (or AP) ​
​​1 tsp ​baking soda ​
1 tsp ​ground cinnamon
4 large ripe bananas
​​2 TBL vegan mayonnaise (or vegan yogurt)
1/4 tsp kosher salt
​​1/2 cup sugar
1 TBL brown sugar
dash of cinnamon
1/2 cup cranberries, optional

preheat oven to 350F.

in a oven safe pan, or pie pan, lay the bananas down. sprinkle brown sugar and cinnamon over top. optional: slice the bananas length-wise first. the flavor difference is negligible. put in oven as it heats up. you’re aiming for anywhere from 15-30 minutes, however long it takes for the oven to warm up fully and/or do up the batter.

in grinder, grind up the flaxseed. add to hot coffee (or water). mix, and ignore, 15 minutes.

in a mixing bowl add the dry ingredients: flour, baking soda and ground cinnamon.

in the flaxseed container add the sugar and apple sauce (or oil). mix it up. fold this mixture into the flour mixing bowl until few dry streaks remain.

remove pie pan of banana goodness from the oven. use your best judgement: there have been times when it got quite mushy & liquidy and it strained it, and other times the moisture level wasn’t alarming. it’s up to you. to the pie pan add the vegan mayo (or yogurt), along with the salt, and stir to mix through. fold the mixture into the mixing bowl. add in the cranberries if using, combine completely.

transfer batter to greased loaf pan.

bake for 1 hour.

allow to cool completely in pan, invert onto wire rack.

to serve, i like to slice 1 thick piece and toast it, until the edges are nice and crunchy and dark.

BAM!

Roasted Banana Bread
update:
my blog friend dixya made some banana bread today too, though hers is more like a bananas foster! her recipe.

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soy sauce egg noodle bowl

Soy Sauce Egg Noodle Bowl

today is the first day of
the Year of the Sheep.
if that means nothing to you,
it just basically means
it’s the Lunar New Year.
these noodles are a symbol of
long life (hopefully).
may this year be a good one:
health
wealth
luck
happiness
happy new year friends!

Soy Sauce Egg Noodle Bowl

soy sauce egg noodle bowl

*note: i didn’t include serving amount etc because that is at your discretion. the yaki soba noodles that i buy come already portioned out and normally dw + i can put away 3 portions. oink. or rather, baaaah. (that’s the sound of a sheep right???!)

4 medium-hard boiled eggs, peeled
3 TBL dark soy sauce
3 TBL thin soy sauce
1 TBL sugar
2 star anises
3 cloves
water

fresh yaki soba noodles
chinese broccoli, cut in thirds
hot chili oil, store bought or homemade
green scallions or chives, to garnish
fried shallots and garlic, to garnish, very optional (and not pictured)

soy sauce eggs:
prepare your eggs, or medium or hard boiled, peel. set aside.

this is the most unscientific way: in a pourable glass measuring cup add the soy sauces and add enough water to equal 1 cup. add to a small saucepan along with the sugar, star anises and cloves. bring to a gentle boil and stir until sugar is dissolved. remove from heat and cool to room temp.

using a tall jar that would fit the 4 eggs and submerge them fully in the soy sauce mix. ignore at least 4 hours and up to 5 days.

noodle bowl prep:
halve the eggs

in a pot boil some water. loosen the noodles for less than a minute in the hot water. portion out. add a tablespoon or so of the egg soy sauce to fully coat the noodles. if you’re feeling fancy, add some of the hot chili oil and coat.

par-boil the chinese broccoli and portion out accordingly. top bowl with egg halves, garnish with chives or green scallions (and fried shallots and garlic, if using) and hot oil.

BAM!

Soy Sauce Egg Noodle Bowl

other asian and new year goodies:
chinese egg tarts
savory sticky rice
sweet potato mochi cakes
turnip cakes
scratch off lottery tickets
waffle cone fortune cookies

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chocolate meringue kisses

Chocolate Meringue Kisses

there’s been no kissing for us lately:
dw was sick last week
and i’m fighting UFC-style
to not get what he had.
it’s too soon to determine
who the winner is.
in the meantime,
i managed to whip up this treat
for our valentine’s day/
4 year anniversary of our first date.
it’s just one egg
a whole lot of mixer action
and the end result is
the perfect sub
for kisses,
but without the germs.
stay warm and healthy friends.

Chocolate Meringue Kisses

chocolate meringue kisses
adapted from movita beaucoup
makes 40

*note: movita’s bossy, and in this case, correct: don’t be lazy and do your mise en place.
**note: if you’re like me, and forget to leave your egg out to reach room temp, put your egg in some hot TAP water for about 5 minutes. you should be good. scientifically speaking i might be off a few degrees but whatever.

1 large egg white, room temperature
1​/​2 cup sugar
1/4 cup cocoa powder
2 tsp cornstarch
1 tsp white vinegar
1 tsp​ ​chocolate extract
2 TBL boiling water

preheat oven to 225F.

in a stand mixer bowl, add your egg white with sugar, cocoa powder, cornstarch, chocolate extract, and vinegar and with your whisk attachment, mix on low. it’s going to look like a hot mess, just keep at it. at some point that tickles your fancy use a spatula and scrape the bottom of the bowl. you want the cocoa powder to be fully incorporated. keeping the mixer on low speed, add in the 2 TBL of boiling water.

incrementally pump up the speed until medium-high and let it go. you’re aiming for glossy stiff peaks, about 15 minutes.

pipe meringue on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. i used a Wilton 1M tip, cus it was the first one i grabbed and let’s be honest, the easiest tip to wash. i came up with exactly 40.

bake for an hour. movita says to check around 45 minutes. i live on the edge. and i was too lazy to get off the couch and i let it go the full hour. turn off oven, ignore for an hour to allow to cool and dry completely.

serve with whipped cream + berries, like a fancy pavlova or an eton mess, or just on its own.

BAM!

Chocolate Meringue Kisses

previous vday treats:
lychee jelly hearts

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chinese egg tarts

Chinese Egg TartsChinese Egg Tarts

i’ve been watching
PBS’s The Great British Baking Show
every monday
(our sundays were taken up
with Football or the Walking Dead)
sure, i realize the series aired
during the summer
across the pond,
i’m upset about things
that have blown over already
but that doesn’t stop me from
taking to twitter
to wax poetry about
all things #GBBO
have you seen it?
who are you rooting?

Chinese Egg Tarts

Chinese Egg Tarts
dough adapted from Use Real Butter

*note: i made these tarts mainly to see if i could, because we so very rarely go to dimsum. i’d say it’s a great dairy free option, a little time consuming, with two types of dough to work with. the lunar new year is a week away, these would make a great addition to the 15 3 day feast that usually takes place to celebrate all things new.

water dough
1 cup AP flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
5 TBL lard
10 TBL water
1/4 tsp salt

fat dough
1 cup AP flour
5 TBL lard

egg custard
4 egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups full fat, lactose free milk (i used organic valley)
pinch of salt

preheat oven 350F.

to make the water dough, mix all the ingredients in a bowl. mix it until smooth, let stand for 20 minutes covered with a damn towel. roll into log and cut into 20 pieces. set aside, covered.

to make the fat dough, mix all the ingredients until smooth. don’t be stressed, it will be crumblier than the water dough. roll into a log and cut into 20 equal pieces, them into small balls.

to make the pastries, first roll out the water dough piece, flatten into a disk about 3″. put a fat dough ball into the center of the disk and wrap the ball completely to make a ball. now flatten it again, rolling it out about 4″ long. fold it into thirds, turn 90 degrees and flatten/roll out again 4″ long. fold into thirds, turn and flat out, though aim for a circle/disk this time, about 4″ wide (or however big your molds are. mine were about 3″) line a mold with the pastry dough, crimp edges. do this for the rest of the dough.

to make egg custard: in a sauce pan heat up the milk very very gently. add the sugar and salt and mix until completely dissolved and incorporated. take off the heat. in a bowl with the egg yolks, very gently pour in a ladle of the warm sweet milk, all the while stirring the yolks. you don’t want to scramble the yolks, add another ladle for good measure, stirring continuously. finally, add in the rest of the mixture, stirring constantly. if you want, strain through a sieve, though i’ll tell you i didn’t bother. set aside until ready to fill pans.

when ready, fill the pans with the custard filling, about 3/4 of way up, don’t overflow it.

bake 30-35 minutes.

these will keep in fridge, covered for a week, though they taste best the day made, about 20 minutes out of the oven.

BAM!

Chinese Egg Tarts

update:
i was included on the worktop recently, a lovely roundup of other lunar new year goodies.

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