Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Chilly apple? Put on a jacket!

Fall is here and in Washington state it means a plethora of fresh, local organic apples. So celebrate your apples by giving them protective covers that protect them from the germs and denting forces in your purse! I've made apple jackets using a simple circular crochet technique, (like starting an amigurumi project) which just involves making a chain of 5, joining to make a loop, and gradually increasing your work to meet the apple's widest part, then reducing again. I simply measure along as I go. Add a cute button, a felt leaf and you're all set!

Cranberry ginger Chutney

If you're thinking of a way to Asia-fy your Thanksgiving Day meal without quite turning to Peking Duck and chopsticks, consider this recipe! I've made this a couple of times now, and I really like how this combination of tart cranberries, sour vinegar and hot ginger and pepper! If you're buying frozen turkeys now that they're on sale, give it a try! Sorry again for the late post. :-)

1 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cup apple cider or apple juice
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
1 12-ounce bag fresh cranberries (about 3 cups)
1 large Bosc pear, peeled, halved, cored, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1/4 cup finely chopped peeled fresh ginger
1/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper

How to:
Stir sugar, cider, and vinegar in heavy large saucepan over medium-high heat until sugar dissolves. Add remaining ingredients. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer until chutney thickens, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to bowl; cover and chill. (Can be made 3 days ahead. Keep chilled.) Makes about 3 cups.

Ghoulish lychee treats!

Ok, so I'm a bit late on this post, but I just had to share my favorite Halloween party treat: lychee eyeball salad! I discovered this one 4th of July as I was sharing my red, white and blue fruit salad with lychees, blueberries and strawberries, and blueberries started falling into the holes of my canned lychees. People started crying out in horror, the little soft fruits so resembled eyeballs. Wrong holiday, so I revived it for Halloween! Since blueberries are sometimes out of season on October 31 and you often have to get evil non-organic blueberries from New Zealand, I wound up using evil grapes from California for this year's batch. I put them on a bed of black cherry jello, which mimics the look of coagulated blood quite nicely.