Wednesday, February 27, 2008


Everything is slow right now. Knitting slowly. Reading slowly. Moving slowly. The three of us have all been sick with this nasty cold which makes me want to just stay in bed, eat soup, and knit lace. I don't know why lace. Maybe finishing my Luna Moth got me on a lace kick. And I knit lace very slowly.

So, the Duchess Raglan is still sitting around with half of one sleeve, and I picked up this scarf that I thought was on its way to the frog pond:

This is the Haruha Scarf by Tikru (whose designs are fabulous!) that I started back in November. The pattern is for fingering weight yarn but I'm using a worsted weight merino silk blend from my walking distance LYS. It's a fairly new yarn for them. I guess it is just called Silk and Merino, the brand is Yarns Northwest, which is a division of the wholesaler Russi Sales, and they're the people who own the LYS. Anyway, it's lovely, soft and drapey and is perfect for scarves. I would love a little sweater from it, but I'm afraid it would wear terribly, being a loose and soft single ply. The end of the scarf that rests in my lap as I knit is already looking worn. It's so soft and pretty though that I don't care. I only bought two balls of the yarn which will make a short and rather wide scarf. I think it will look ok tied - it would be about ascot length. We'll see. I got as far as this photo shows and thought that would be too short, so I thought I'd frog it and make mittens mittens from Knitting Little Luxuries. I think this yarn would be a good substitute for Louisa Harding Grace. But, I'm liking knitting this pattern, so I'm going to just keep going.

That soup I mentioned that was simmering on the stove last time I posted...well. It smelled wonderful while cooking but came out quite below par. Think lima beans floating in chipotle water. Bleh. I froze the remainder of it, thinking I could turn it into some better soup later. It just seemed incomplete. But, last night I tried yet another soup recipe from the same book, Super Natural Cooking, and it was wonderful. Exactly what a houseful of sickies needed, and quite appropriate for Project Spectrum, too. I reduced the amounts of everything by 50-75% to make a smaller quantity, went about putting it together slightly differently than the book, and made some necessary substitutions since I only had 1 cup of stock and no fire roasted tomatoes. Here's my interpretation.

Toasted Wheat Germ Soup

4 cups of vegetable stock and/or water
5 large cloves of garlic, very coarsely chopped
1 very small yellow onion, thinly sliced into crescents
1 carrot, diced
1 can diced tomatoes in juice
1 can white beans
1/2 cup wheat germ
1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. adobo sauce
1 tsp. basil
salt and pepper to taste
shredded parmesan for garnish

Heat the oil in a 3 quart or larger soup pot, then saute the garlic, onion and carrot until the onion is soft and translucent. Add your stock and/or water. I had 1 cup of stock and three cups of water, so I turned the heat down to low and let this simmer for a long time to let the flavors come out.

Heat a dry skillet or wok over medium heat and toss in the wheat germ. Stir or toss constantly until it smells warm and fragrant, but not too long. This was my best guess for the toasted wheat germ the recipe specified. It didn't say how to toast wheat germ, and I was too lazy to look it up online. Add the toasted wheat germ to the soup pot and stir well. The wheat germ will expand a little bit and give the soup some body and a toasty flavor, besides an extra nutritional boost.

Add the can of tomatoes, including the juice. I didn't have fire roasted tomatoes, so I added the paprika and adobo sauce for a smoky flavor and left out the red pepper flakes the recipe called for. (I keep a container of chipotles in adobo sauce in the freezer, since I never use a whole can at once. That way I can just scoop out what I need for a recipe and the rest stays frozen and doesn't spoil.) Add the basil. Simmer until hot and the flavors are blended.

Drain the can of white beans (I had Great Northern beans in the cupboard but any variety would work) and rinse well. Add to the soup pot and stir carefully. Canned white beans are easily turned to mush, and you don't want that. Simmer gently until the beans are hot. Add salt and pepper to taste. Ladle into bowls and top with shredded parmesan. Mmm!

As usual with food, I don't have a photo. The book didn't have a picture of this one either. It was good though! Nicely spicy and warm, and the big chunks of garlic had simmered long enough to soften and mellow. I always like a lot of garlic and spice when I have a cold, and this was perfect.

I'm contemplating a PS Fire-themed knit. The laceweight that I thought was fiery was actually a different color than my photo and memory were telling me and won't work. So it's either socks or mittens next!

1 comment:

Lolly said...

oooh, i can't wait to try it! just printed it out, and i have all of the ingredients. this sounds wonderful! many thanks for sharing :)