There’s always something to learn at various moments of one’s life. Sometimes you are introduced to something new, and there are times when you are relearning what you thought you knew. I learned how to make my breads softer, a goal I’d been trying to reach for quite a while.
I tried a challah braid bread a few days before Thanksgiving and it wasn’t working at all. Too dense and still too crusty. I found a sweet roll recipe that I used for Thanksgiving dinner and it worked wonderfully.
Those are the actual rolls we had. They disappeared fast between the 5 of us. 😉 A few days later I used the roll recipe to make a challah braid and it came out nice. I could have left it in the oven a bit longer but it was really good and it too disappeared quickly. The key here was that breads with fats in them(like eggs, milk, butter) will tend to be softer(providing you don’t overbake them), while breads without any of those will be crustier. There’s nothing like a nice chunk of crusty bread when you’re got hot soup to eat, but if you just want something to go with your morning tea or coffee, or to entertain with dinner, fresh soft bread is the way to go. One of these days I’ll actually get a braid pretty enough to photograph. (I should point out that lately photographs have been a little thin without my computer. I’m loath to put anything I don’t absolutely need to use on hubby’s system. He’s already cranky about me using it.)
Another thing I picked up this weekend was double knitting. I think that’s about the last remaining knitting technique left for me. I put it off for the longest time because it seemed too hard. I also didn’t think I’d need anything made from doubled fabric as far as knitting went. But then I got a good look at my friend’s Tapestry Cowl and decided maybe now was the time to learn this neat method. After a few rough starts, I have managed to get pretty far on a hotpad for the kitchen (I could have used these on T-day instead of those raggedy towels 😉 ).
Initially I was going to make this design, but then I figured I’d be smart and just do something simple for now. I may make those someday. I could even get a deep green and make some Christmas-y ones. Maybe even do a 3-color double knit hot pad. Yeah, I’m getting ahead of myself now, aren’t I? 🙂
Other than baking myself silly and fiddling with yarn and needles, not much has been going on at chez Beanknit. I’m not planning any crafted gifts this year(do I ever?) so I don’t have that to worry about. I am debating sewing pretty scarves for my hair or knitting a real tam. Apparently the Fern Glade Beret(Ravelry link) has gone all wonky and doesn’t look like I wanted it to. I don’t know what I’ll do with it, because I’m sure washing it will shrink/felt it when I just need to snug it up at the ribbing. Ah well. Maybe I can sew some elastic in there. I’m not interested in picking up stitches and knitting ribbing on tiny needles, that’s for sure. It’s time for a new winter deal. Any ideas? Let me know!