Monthly Archives: February 2015

Berry Season

Dee: Truly, I love berries above all other fruit!  I love them just as they are, I love them sprinkled on top of anything, and I also love them baked into delightful treats for my taste buds.  I grew up in berry country.  Hello?  Knott’s Berry Farm?!  I never stood a chance when the boysenberry was being celebrated with an entire amusement park centered around it’s loveliness.

In early spring, on my way home from Fullerton, I’d stop off the freeway and  buy strawberries by the case for $5.00. You cannot do that here…sadly.  Also, have you ever noticed that there are no good pie places around here either?  I grew up with a Marie Callender’s never more than a few miles away.  I was able to satisfy my berry cravings seasonally with their fresh strawberry pie and year round with their mixed berry pie.  I love their mixed berry pie.  Which brings me to my Triple Berry Crumble.

2015-02-07 20.03.45It’s a mélange of seasonal berries topped with an oatmeal cookie.  Drooling yet?  Well, because I am a girl who likes to share, I am posting my “recipe” for my Triple Berry Crumble for you to enjoy and celebrate the splendor that is berry season.

Dee’s Triple Berry Crumble

  • Wash and dry about three (3) pints of mixed berries.  I like to use raspberries, blueberries and blackberries.  I have also been know to make this a quadruple berry treat by adding some cut up strawberries to the mix.  Use your favorites, be the architect of your crumble.
  • Sprinkle and stir in no more than 1/4 cup white sugar into the berries and about 1 to 2 tablespoons of cornstarch to thicken the juices.  You seriously do not need to add any sugar but there are times when the berries are a tad too tart, use your best judgement here. You also do not have to add the cornstarch but I like thicker juices so I add some.
  • The oatmeal crumb topping is heavy on the oatmeal because I love it so.  Experiment a little, go ahead, I give you permission to mess with perfection and adjust to your preferences.  I still do, sometimes I add about 1/2 cup or so of chopped walnuts or pecans.
  • You’ll need 1 cup softened butter (don’t even think about using anything but butter).
  • 3 cups of old fashioned oatmeal.  The five (5) minute variety.
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 1/2 cups firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • Mix all of the crumb topping ingredients with your hands until nice and crumbly then spread evenly over the top of the berries. Bake for 30-40 minutes at 350 degrees until the topping is nicely browned and the juices are bubbling up through it along the sides and corners.
  • I like to eat mine while it’s still warm and heavenly.  This would be a good time to add a nice scoop of vanilla ice cream but really, the berries are delicious enough on their own.  Mike likes his berry crumble cold so I stow all leftover triple berry crumble in the fridge.

Happy baking!

 

Happy Hearts

Dee: February is almost half over and I have exceeded my challenge of knitting one hat for the month.  I’m completely smitten with the stranded color work of my Valentine theme hat pattern, the Heartgate Hat.  I’ve knit three of these hats already and I see no signs of stopping until the end of the month, I can probably knit two more before the month’s end.   I’m not sure which color combination I should cast on with next.  I wish I had Packers colors.

2015-02-11 19.33.28

I knit the first hat using stash yarn because it seemed like the smartest thing to do and then I bought more yarn, twice.  I have been knitting these hats exclusively in Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Worsted.   It’s my personal opinion that using yarn that melds the stitches together is the best yarn for stranded knitting.  I’ve knit color work with smooth yarn in the past but the result just didn’t quite make it for me.  The yarn has to grab the stitches that neighbor it and become one with the garment.   Clearly I cannot keep all of these hats.  I’ve been wearing the cranberry and white one ever since I cast off.  The blue and white is a gift for someone special.  The orange and blue is awaiting it’s forever head, a Christmas gift perhaps?

Happy knitting y’all!