Needle Tart

If I'm not knitting or sewing something, I must be cooking something!

Monday, October 30, 2006

The Mouse 2

The former mouse is still making himself smelt. I have cleaned under (well, as far under as I can manage without moving a ton 'o books) all the furniture in the entry hall and there is no mouse, or former mouse, to be found. He does still add that certain something to the air, but The Husband says he must be in the wall. We will just have to wait.
As for how I know what a liquid mouse smells like: I grew up in rural Pennsylvania and if you've ever driven the back roads in August, especially a few days after a furry woodland creature met his semi, you, too would recognise the aroma of former mammel.
On the knitting front: I am still working on the Socks for Soldiers. Last week I was a reading teacher and had some time between classes. Out came the knitting.......Oh, no! I had lost one of my double pointed needles. Now what?

Yes, that is a paper clip. I used one of the large, thick ones to replace my bamboo needle (size 0), and I knit about 2 inches at school. When I got home I found the missing needle under the rocking chair. Good thing I am the only one who usually sits in it!

In other news this was the weekend to strain the pears!! Yippee!

Step one: Drain all the pears and spices out. The you are left with the bowl of golden goodness. Add the sugar syrup and bottle:

Mmmmmm!! Autumn goodness.

Here is the complete recipe:

Pear Liquor

2-gallon jar
Pears to fill the jar (quartered and cored but not peeled)
3 vanilla beans (cut in half)
4 inches of cinnamon stick
About 1/2 of a nutmeg, grated
Enough vodka to cover, 2 Fifths and a little more(Notice that I use Gordon's Vodka)

Put all the food-type stuff in the jar and let it sit in a dark, cool corner for six (yes, SIX) weeks. Once a week open the jar and stir the pears around. Don't forget to smell the pear-y goodness and lick any drips off your fingers (the first two or three weeks it will taste like straight vodka, but it gets better).
After the six weeks are up, strain all the pears, vanilla beans, and cinnamon out. (I start with a coarse strainer, then a fine strainer, and end with straining through coffee filters). Add sugar syrup (1/2 cup water, 1 cup sugar. Bring to a boil and boil for 3-4 minutes to be sure the sugar is dissolved) to taste (I used about 3/4 cup of syrup). Pour the golden goodness into sterilized bottles and cork or cap (don't worry about making it air tight. The alcohol will keep it OK). Now for the hard part: Put it away again for six more weeks (*weeps*) to let the flavor develop. If you started when pears were the ripest, you will have something special to toast the secular New Year! (It also makes GREAT winter holiday gifts!)
Of course, I did have to taste it to be sure that there was enough sugar in this year's batch. Yum!!


Blogger confiance said...

Ugh, I hear you on the dead mouse smell. The sweater (from last post) looks awesome, I really like some of her patterns.

As far as commuting goes, I want to be able to walk to campus in 10 minutes or so, since I tend to have lots of evening meetings on campus. And also, I don't do well with the whole getting up on time concept. However, one of these days I think we're gonna have to go visit a yarn store or several.

5:01 PM  
Blogger Lexy Girl said...

Hey thanks for stopping by my own lame excuse for a blog (big update tonight though with lot's of pictures)

I will definitely check out the socks for soldiers.

8:31 PM  
Blogger Kniterella said...

mmmm, now - to find ripe pears in Michigan - in November? I am probably out of luck!

9:08 PM  
Blogger Coach Susan said...

Where can I get me somadat pear tree so I can me me somdat dare pear juice? Oh, and I need some some gin. And a big boiling pot. And some time at home to play in da knitchen. Yeah, alladat. I wants me some real BAD! Got drool drips on the fronta my blouse now. Ain't pretty, let me tell you! The other animals in my cube farm already think I'm a nutjob. Now I've got the slobber to prove it.

2:01 PM  
Blogger Kari said...

You used a paper clip to knit when you lost your dpn? LOL. I had never thought about using a paper clip if i lost one of my needles. You should tell Kim (the Socks for Soldiers group owner) what you did, she would probably love to hear of your dedication. When i'm working on dpn, i try to stop in the middle of a that i have stitches on all four needles. Otherwise i'm always loosing that fourth needle if there is nothing on it. And on my SFS, i'm using size 2 needles.

11:44 AM  
Blogger Kristy said...

Hi Bonnie! Thank you for letting me know about your squares. I will do my best to let you know when they arrive - at the very least, I will post your name on the blog. I can't believe the post office couldn't figure out that you MEANT OakDALE, not OakLAND. :) I'm just glad you were able to get them out again. I look forward to receiving them.

And ingenious solution with the paper clip in lieu of knitting needle!

8:57 PM  
Blogger Amy Lane said...

Awesome socks--even more awesome cooking! (I will sit at the front of class and knit when the kids are working ahem 'quietly'--they're usually very nice about it... (of course they all want me to make them something.)

9:08 PM  

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