Saturday, January 16, 2010

Weekend Excursions and Projects

I signed up for a free pressure cooking class at the Sandy Bosch Kitchen Center in hopes that I would learn some new tricks for using my pressure cookers. I have both an electric one as well as a standard one that you use on top of the stove. Unfortunately the teacher didn't have much to teach me about cooking with pressure that I didn't already know. However, there was one trick that was fascinating. One of the techniques the teacher demonstrated was pressure cooking chicken breasts. First she browned the chicken, then added seasoning, water and barbeque sauce -- and pressure cooked for 7 minutes. Nothing unique about that -- but the way she shredded the chicken was a first for me. She cut each chicken breast into about 3 chunks and put it in the bowl of her Bosch mixer.Then, using the wire whisk attachments she shredded the chicken. In about 30 to 40 seconds the meat was perfectly shredded. Pretty nifty.

After the class, I swung by Quilts Etc. and bought fabric for a quilt I designed in EQ6.  These are the fabrics I picked. I typically do scrappy quilts, but I loved these fabrics enough that I'm doing a quilt with only these 6 fabrics.


The first three fabrics are from Brannock and Patek's Blessings line with Moda; the fourth fabric (which shows as a larger scale than it really is) is from Windham's Nancy's Blues fabric line. The red star fabric is American Patriot designed by Faye Burgos for Marcus, and the final fabric is from Kansas Troubles Winter Serenade II.

This is the quilt I'll be making with these fabrics. The blocks will be the first four fabrics, with the Windham fabric as background. The dark setting squares will be the blue paisley, the setting triangles will be the Kansas Troubles fabric, and the border will be the American Patriot.

Here's a close-up of  the block with my chosen fabrics.

I sewed the blocks for Emrie's baby quilt -- but still need to finish sewing the blocks together, as well as do the border.

 I'm still debating whether to use this brown floral/stripe fabric for the border. The spool blocks are pretty simple, but it takes some planning because in some cases fabrics from two spools are in the same block.  Unfortunately, I'm heading out of town for a week for work, so won't be able to get back to this for a week.

The other project I did was to finally figure out how to do hemstitching to prepare flannel baby blankets and burp cloths for crocheting. Eureka! My new sewing machine works great. Only problem was that I didn't use a wing needle, so am now using my stiletto to make the holes bigger for crocheting.

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