Category Archives: Cooking

Bigger and bigger

I’m now finished the feather and fan and am in the plain rows before the border. If I keep to my schedule, I should be finished on time.


Summer has arrived. I didn’t wear knee socks for two days this week and Caleb grilled steak and asparagus for our dinner. It was very good.

No knitting

No knitting today, but I have my new handbag almost finished and Caleb and I canned six quarts of peaches and one quart of peach pie filling. The USDA really does know how to make pie filling.

More shawl, good food

There was more passenging this past week, so I was able to get a chunk more of Juno done:

Doubled shawl

I’m up to 57″ now, so it’s just 9″ more until the pattern starts again. It looks like I managed to do that in about a month, so maybe I’ll actually be able to get to the pattern this summer. Wednesday will be the shawl’s third birthday, but I don’t think I’ll have finished it by then.

Saturday was a superlative food day. We started out with Thesis Muffins (no frosting and melting the butter instead of creaming it). Right before lunch, we picked up our CSA (kale, garlic, beets, greens, lettuce, cilantro, broccoli, and eggs from chickens that were wandering the parking lot). Lunch was the second best banh mi I’ve ever had (and so close to the CSA pickup!). Dinner was fish tacos (the best fish we’ve had in at least a year) from a mashup of two recipes (we sous vided the fish and then warmed it with a marinade of olive oil, lime juice, adobo, and a few other things I forget). Dessert was strawberries I’d bought at the farmers’ market on Thursday with freshly whipped cream.

Two ways of keeping warm

Well, it snowed a little today. I guess it’s good that I didn’t completely pack away all my warm stuff.

I’m finished the bodies of the mittens, and am almost finished the first thumb. I love how they get faster as you’re approaching the end.

Today, I went to a homebrewing store. (Someone got a kit for the holidays.) It was amazing how much it was like a knitting store: a lot of the little toys were even packaged in the same way. The clerks were a lot like knitting store clerks with the level of interest and wanting to share the details.

Cooking wort does make the whole house smell good in a different way than knitting does, though.

Her name was Rhonda. She was a mushroom.

smelly mushroom log


This is the last picture of Rhonda.  Caleb checked up on her, and, well, we hadn’t apparently gotten all of the mold.  He saved her, though, for one last picture.


I got a lot of knitting done, though; I’m up to 41″.

Naughty mushroom

Rhonda started having a problem.

It turns out that, if you put something wet and organic in a sealed container, mold will grow.

Since the people who sold us Rhonda still haven’t sent instructions, we searched around and decided to cut off the moldy parts and repackage in a more ventilated container.


Here Caleb is slicing off the bottom.  The white sides are mushroom spawn, not mold.

Caleb slicing the mushroom log


I think that the log is from Ikea; it certainly looks like the inside of Ikea furniture.

sliced shiitake log


We have our first minimushrooms!

close up of mushroom bud

Rhonda is a compressed piece of organic material and mushroom spores. Caleb and I got her at a farmers’ market a few weeks back. She’s supposed to grow shiitake mushrooms.

She lives in the kitchen, and needs to be sprayed with water and fanned several times a day to help get rid of CO2. (Well, Caleb says she needs to be fanned. I think he may just be amused by watching me fan a lump of mushroom dirt. I know I’m amused doing it.)

I think I may need to move into full blown mycoblogging instead of knitblogging. I’m up to 37″, though, on the Hug.

Soaking Rhonda

We soaked Rhonda today.

shiitake mushroom log

(Rhonda is our shiitake mushroom lump.)

Here’s hoping she’ll be fruitful and tasty!

There would be a picture of the Hug, but I realized earlier this week that I’d made a mistake a few inches back. I pulled it out, fixed it, and reknit. This means I should be about three or four inches ahead of where I am. I’m not sure that it’s even longer than it was in the last post.

I’m keeping working on it, though, and am really enjoying it.

Shiitake mushrooms!

It’s amazing, but I think that I’ve noticed a correlation between my knitting and time off from work.  If I have time off, so I’m not going in and teaching and the students aren’t producing new grading, I get more knitting done.  Who’d have thought?

I’m now up to 40% on the Hug, greatly assisted by a car trip.  (One of my awesome cousins visited this weekend.)


Since knitting is going slowly right now, I’m going to share my newest creative endeavor:
shiitake mushroom mycelia sitting in a reusable bag

This is Rhonda. Caleb and I got her at the farmers’ marked on Saturday. She’s a compressed chunk of shiitake mushroom mycelia, and, although I can kill any plant I try to grow, we’re hoping that fungi might thrive. (When the instructions are to get it wet and seal it in a plastic bag, you know that it’s got to be less finicky than mint!)