Tuesday, April 28

Scandinavian egg cups

It would be impossible to describe just how much I love these Norwegian egg cups, which amazingly were bought separately - I can't remember where from or how much I paid, but I just know they were at car boot sales or charity shops and about a pound each. The fact that they are two different variations from the same set is even more pleasing to me.

Each has a circular depression in which you prop your boiled egg, and a widened rim at one side where you can put the egg shell when you have peeled it off, or some salt in which to dip your egg as you eat it.

They are made by Figgjo Flint in Norway; judging by the designs, some time in the 1960s.

Saturday, April 25

Cake and crockery

I have an embarrassingly huge collection of mismatched crockery - much of it in storage to avoid attracting the disapproval of the Curse, who thinks that all crockery should be white.
I'm going to show you a few of my favourite bits and pieces over the coming weeks. Here's my endearingly camp 'Matador' plate by manufacturer Broadhurst, made in the mid to late 1950s I believe, and donated to my collection by Suze the Flooze. It is shown sporting a slice of The Best Cake This Year - a moist coconut sponge with homemade blackberry jam filling.


*Some time later...

Coconut cake

6oz/175g butter, softened
6oz/175g caster sugar
6oz/175g self-raising flour
1.5tsp baking powder
3 eggs, beaten
2oz/50g dessicated coconut
2tbsp coconut cream or single cream

Preheat oven to 180 degrees C/gas mark 4. Butter two 8" sandwich tins and line the bases with greaseproof paper.
Mix butter, sugar, flour, baking powder and eggs in a food processor (or beat by hand as I did) for 2-3 mins till smooth.
Stir in coconut and cream.
Divide between the sandwich tins and smooth the tops. Bake for 25-30 mins till the tops are nice and brown.
Loosen the edges then leave in the tins for another five mins before turning out to cool.
Spread with jam, sandwich together.

Thursday, April 16


While I was away on holiday I knitted something up for a Pay it Forward gift; I can't show you the gift, but I will show you the yarn. I was very impressed by this yarn - inside the main ball of 4 ply was a little tube which was wound with a thinner (perhaps laceweight?) offering of the same colour. Apparently this is intended to be a strengthening thread, perhaps to incorporate in the heels and toes of your socks? The fact that I didn't find it till I was halfway through the second sock made it a little difficult to adhere to this admirable intention. I will save it for darning instead!

*UPDATED! After losing the ball band for both balls, I've now managed to track down the yarn type - it's Jawoll from Lang Yarns in Switzerland. Bought in IKnit London for a very reasonable £3.30 per ball.

I like the match between the colour of the yarn and the paint on this little fellow I spotted on the side of a derelict pub on the outskirts of Greenwich.

Monday, April 13

Woad in flower

My balcony, when the sun finally peeped through the greyness today for an hour or two.

The woad is in flower; I didn't manage to use any of the leaves for dyeing last year, but intend to plant some more this year and hope to have a go.

Thursday, April 9

Back for now

I am back to report on a wonderful holiday which lived up to and beyond my expectations.

Some of the highlights were:

- remembering what I love about the Curse and why we got together in the first place
- spending lots of happy hours together, exploring the footpaths, ales and cuisine of the island
- seeing red squirrels marauding round the treetops in the spring sunshine (thanks Jane for the inspiration, and that National Trust for its stewardship of the lovely Borthwood Copse)
- looking out to sea from bed in the morning while supping a cup of tea
- eating omelette for breakfast flavoured with the wild garlic we picked the day before
- paddling in the sea (very briefly, it was ruddy cold!)
- views of the coastline all around the island
- razor clams cooked in garlic butter
- skate wings
- New Forest ice cream
- feeling the sun on my face
...and knitting, of course!

The main project was put into hibernation for the week while I knocked up a pair of socks (Spring Forward) and a stripy ipod cosy for a friend. More info tomorrow.

The lowlights?
- going to the wrong ferry port on the way out (duh! I am definitely getting old!)
- having to come home again after only a week!