Google+ What I Made Today: May 2014

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Coffea arabica - for Mix It Monthly

Coffee. Organic and fair trade. It is my favored morning beverage, though I do alternate with a nice organic, fair trade Irish breakfast tea. But today we focus on the glorious beverage born of the beloved Coffea arabica, grown in the traditional way, under the protection of tree cover, lovingly fermented, roasted fresh, and ground and brewed in my little hut, because that's the theme of this month's Mix It Monthly. So that's what I sipped this morning and that's what landed in my art journal.

And that's what I made today.

Mix It Monthly

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Garlic Mustard Love

Wild foods are most often in their prime for only a short window of time and springtime greens of the second-year Alliaria petiolata, commonly called garlic mustard, are no exception. The ones on my little acre are just preparing to bloom, so harvest I must. Rain or no rain, in the only hours available to me. I pluck this "wild invasive" by the roots to manage its vivacious spreading and do my best to waste nothing.

The greens were rinsed and gently sauteed in olive oil with some fresh cracked black pepper, fresh grated nutmeg, fresh copped egyptian onion tops, and then covered to simmer-n-steam in its own juices until tender. Mere minutes. I spooned a bit liquid love off the top of the still-macerating garlic vinegar to add just before serving (for breakfast, no less). And this dish is equally tasty served cold, so a generous harvest is always worthwhile ~ in more ways than one.

I've really grown to appreciate this plant over the years.

As for the second year roots, I rinsed them well, brought them into the kitchen, dried them a bit, added them to my blender with some living apple cider vinegar, chopped it all together and poured it into a canning jar to (like the garlic vinegar) macerate for 6-8 weeks before straining and bottling. I'll be harvesting roots again in the autumn, of the first year growth, to make more delicious, nutritious vinegar and who knows what else?

And if you're wondering, the roots of this plant taste like a subtle horseradish. Yeah. Very tasty!

That's what I made today.


Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Love with Fiber

Between studio and garden work I finished up and listed three Spirit Pouches. Making these little mojo bags has been my latest creative obsession. And I'm having loads of fun choosing the buttons for them from my vintage button stash. I have more that I'll be listing in the days ahead, so keep an eye out, and of you're local, stop by my studio to experience them in person!

I spun some Spirit Cords today, too, since the fibers were out and around me. This cord, called "Harmony" is a blend of lovely coral wool and acrylic boa yarn in shades of turquoise with a hint of green throughout, and is one of a limited edition of six cords. I spun others too, and they'll make their way to my ArtFire shop and studio soon.

In addition to these creative delights I picked up the winnings from our Open Studios at Whiting Mills raffle (which I foolishly neglected to blog about last week) and contacted the winners. That's always fun ~ saying "you won!" I also transplanted some of my greenhouse babes, watered my garden seedlings and perused my little acre for the next wild harvests, and discovered some that will get my attention tomorrow.

So, yeah, that's what I made today.