Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Coping with Snow: Knitting and Baking

Outside is a blizzard, an actual blizzard. Adding more snow on top of the two feet we already had. Beautiful, but I'm trying not to think of the next few weeks. . .

Inside, I tried a new recipe from Nigella: Oatcakes. They are very simple - just oats, water, lard, salt, and soda, and they remind me most of crackers. Apparently there are variations on oatcakes among the Scots, so I might try another one just for kicks. I'll feed these to the children when they wake up from their naps.

Of course I ate a few, but my *real* snack was a cup of green tea, a clementine, and some very dark Ghirardelli chocolate.

And I finished a dishcloth for myself - the one I was using had turned Victorian orphan grey and sprung a hole besides. So I am pleased with my bright new one. And here are the directions as I know them in my head - my apologies if I don't have the right knitting terminology. My grandmother taught me how to knit these and they are my quotidian, knit-in-my-sleep handwork.

I use Sugar and Cream cotton yarn and size 7 needles.

Cast on 4 stitches.
Knit 4.
Slip 1, knit 1, yarn over, and knit the rest.
Repeat this sequence until you have 40 to 50 stitches (depends how big you like your dishcloth - I usually make mine 45+).
Now, to decrease: slip 1, knit 2 together, yarn over, knit 2 together, knit the rest of the row.
Repeat until you have 4 stitches left.
Knit 2, cast 1 off. Repeat until you have 1 stitch left (this is where my dishcloth is in the photo). Cut the yarn so you have a long tail. Feed it through the final loop and tighten. Using a big sewing needle, weave the tail into the corner, being sure to go back and forth. Trim end closely. Done!


Janelle said...

Can you believe I've never knitted a dishcloth? I will try your pattern, and with the orange corner to boot. I also concur that survival is a goal as my house is slowly enveloped in white. And there were so many years of my life (when I was a student, a teacher, a fulltime professional of any sort) when I would've welcomed the time off. This just sort of feels like more intense "time on." Cozy, nonetheless ... with crazily decorated valentine cookies and my own (way too ambitious) knitting endeavor. I like your blog, by the way!

Anonymous said...

That orange corner is a stroke of brilliance! How were the oatcakes, by the way?


Anonymous said...

Oh, and "Victorian orphan gray" is definitely going in my lexicon.


Margo said...

The oatcakes were good - definitely repeatable. When I give you your cookbook back, you can bake them!
And Janell, I hope my directions yield the right dishcloth results. I tried to embroider flowers on a scarf I knitted for Evie - I remember you doing that on a sweater for your cutie. Sometime (soon?) that will show up on this blog.

Christian - Modobject@Home said...

I think even I could knit your dishcloth, sounds simple enough. I love the colors that you chose, especially the one orange corner!

The amount of snow you guys have is absolutely amazing to me. I have to ask, have things shut down or are people still going about business, school, and errands as usual?

Margo said...

Christian, things are pretty shut down. This is way more snow than usual. Our city's snow emergency is extended until Friday and there is no one out. It's very windy which is causing dangerous drifting in the country, judging by the amount of drifting in my city backyard! I don't expect to get out of the house til this weekend. And then I HOPE for lots of warm weather to melt the pesky drifts.

craftycountrymomma said...

I just started knitting and crochetting dish clothes what kind of yarn are you using, I found some 100% cotton yarn and I didn`t know what kind is the best to use.

Margo said...

Hi Crafty -
I use the brand Sugar and Cream. It's cotton yarn, yep. Good luck!