Tuesday, 19 January 2016

Poncho Finito

Well, my poncho is finished and I've been wearing it too. I'm really pleased with how it turned it. The husband and I were going for coffee one Saturday morning recently and I asked him to take a few photos of me wearing my poncho. Here's the first one.

I really don't know what he was thinking of! Anyway, he took a few more and I'm actually in them. See how swollen the Bannn river is; we've had so much rain.

You can look back here, here and here to see some more details about the poncho. It took a lot of work as, if you spread it out, it would be almost as big as a single bed blanket.

The green yarn is from New Lanark Mills and is 90% wool and 10% silk. It smells like real wool should and has a lovely crisp feeling (if you know what I mean!). I was a bit worried that it would be itchy but it's fine. The collar is knit using a full ball of James C Brett Faux Fur in colour H2. That doesn't convey much about the colour, does it? It's a silvery grey with a slight tinge of green.

Ha, ha!! I've just noticed how long my cardigan sleeves look! Actually, it was only because my cardigan was falling off underneath the poncho.

Let me know what you think of my poncho. I hope you like it as much as I do. Sorry about not being able to do much commenting recently. My shoulders and arms are sore so I'm trying to reduce the amount of typing I do. I didn't even realise, for a while, that apart from not having much time, this pain was putting me off using a keyboard except when absolutely necessary.

By the way, have a look back here if you want to read why I say finito.

All the best for now and I hope to get reading and commenting on your blogs soon.

Tuesday, 5 January 2016

Chicken and Apple Cheesebake

Happy New Year to you all! I suppose I'm a bit late but things have been very hectic so I haven't been able to blog for ages. Thank you too for all your good wishes for Christmas and your comments about the flooding in the Lake District. We've had quite a bit of flooding here in Northern Ireland recently as well. The rain seems to continue almost non-stop and, at times, is torrential.

Anyway, before Christmas, I did a post about frying apples.  When mine were cooled, I put them in the freezer so that I could use them for a chicken and apple cheesebake. So this is how I make it.

First of all cook the chicken. Normally I use roast chicken but this time I fried it. I used five chicken breast fillets cut into cubes. I used my new purple silicon slotted spoon stir it about! This was one of the few things I bought when we were on our wee pre-Christmas holiday.

When the chicken was cooked I put it in an oven proof dish. Although you can't see it in the picture, the dish is also purple!

Toast about 250g of breadcrumbs.

For my cheesebake I made a pint of white sauce - using the all in one method ...

... and then added about 270g of grated mature cheddar and stirred until it was completely melted into the sauce.

While I was cooking I remembered my little embroidery that hangs above the Aga. It's very true.

It takes five or six apples for a cheesebake. Here I topped the cooked chicken with roughly half of the fried apple slices. Keep the best looking slices for the top.

Then I poured the cheese sauce over the chicken and apples.

 Use the remainder of the fried apple slices on top of the cheese sauce.

Next I sprinkled about 90g of grated mature cheddar over the apples ...

... and topped the lot with the breadcrumbs.

I cooked my cheesebake for about thirty minutes in the Aga roasting oven. That's a hot oven; about 250°C or 490°F. The chicken is already cooked so it's just heating everything up and browning the top.

Of course I forgot to take a picture when it was cooked! It tasted delicious though. You could make it with turkey instead of chicken and you could do without adding any cheese (or use less cheese) if you prefer.

Not exactly a recipe but close. Let me know if you try it.

All the best for now. I hope to get back to reading and commenting on your blogs too.