Monday, October 24, 2011

I love a good towel..And a good edging!


I think theres nothing better than going into somebodys house and finding a beautiful towel edging attatched to a soft cotton towel.  I definately think that you can enhance the look of ANY bathroom by adding a nice colourful edging to a towel thats well displayed.  Usually if an Igne Oyasi towel edging is made, they have a crochet part to it aswel, this part is sewn onto the towel to allow the owner to change the edging to a different towel if they wanted to.  Although some people prefer to do Igne Oyasi on the actual edge of the towel, I think either way is fine! Enjoy!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Bukhari Rice Recipe


So lebanese cooking doesn't really divulge into Gulf (Khaliji) cooking, but for the sake of being "Arab" I thought I'd share this recipe.  This dish is similar to an Indian biriyani, and in saying that, Saudi/Khaliji cooking has alot of similarity to Indian cooking in the sense that they use alot of spices. Bukhar in Arabic "steam" and the name of this dish comes from the steam created to cook and make the rice fluffy. For those of you who have heard of "kabseh" then this is just as good.

The aroma of this dish is captivating, and will make your neighbours come over and introduce themselves if they haven't already.

Ingredients:4c basmati rice
1kg chicken (traditionally they use a whole chicken, but you may use pieces)
1/2 c oil
4 large onions cut into half rings
2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
4 carrots (I don't like carrots so I don't use them)
1 tbs ground cumin
1 c sultanas/currents
Almonds, Pine nuts, Cashews for presentation

MethodWash rice and leave in warm salty water for an hour.  Remove skin of the chicken and wash it, cover the chicken lightly with flour and salt (this is one way to keep that 'chickeny' smell coming out in the cooking process that Arabs use, also cinnamon is used but the abovementioned method is also effective.)  Cut into 6 or 8 pieces.
In a large stainless steel pot, heat the oil, and add the pieces of chicken and cook until golden.  Remove chicken and set aside.  Add more oil and fry the onions until they are golden, add 3 cups of water and leave to boil.  Add chicken to the pot, add salt and pepper, cover the pot and let it boil for 30 mins. 
Remove chicken from broth, and add carrots to broth.  Strain rice and and add it with the cumin to the pot and stir.  Leave it to boil and add the sultanas and chicken-DO NOT STIR. .  Place a piece of foil over the pot and seal the sides and place the lid on top (this keeps the steam in)  turn down to low and leave for an hour. 
During this time you can fry the almonds, pine nuts and cashews in either oil or ghee.
Take out chicken, put rice on a platter, arrange chicken on top and then put the fried nuts on top aswel.


Monday, October 17, 2011

Embroidery Stitches!!!


Just a few stitches, I'll upload more when I can find the other folder.  Theres also a great embroidery stitch library made by SharonB you can find the link here

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Tatting things!


So I was going through my pattern books (some of which I didn't even know I had) and I thought that I'd post them for everyone to have a look at! Enjoy x

The 1st recipe of many..


So after much deliberation, I've decided to put up recipes that have been passed down to me, or ones I've come up with in this blog also.  Some of you may be thinking:  "this is a craft blog, why would you add food to it also?"  Well thats a simple question to answer.  My grandmother was a prized cook in our city in Lebanon.  She was orphaned at a young age and went to live with her aunty who taught her all the ins and outs of lebanese cooking.  These secrets and recipes have been passed down to me and now its time to share them with you.  Yes, this is a craft blog, but its also a journey of my life through the things I love, and if I've forgotten to mention, I was a chef at a top restaurant for nearly 2 years, however due to distance and "restaurant politics" I quit and now I'm undertaking aged care.  I also indulged in Turkish cookery obviously because of my partner, and many other different cuisines, however I think for the time being I'll just stick to middle-eastern recipes.  Most ingredients can be found in your local shops, or in a middle eastern grocery.

Cooking to me is my other love alongside craft.  I cook nearly every day, and sometimes get angry at myself because I can't think of WHAT to cook.  So I'll put up a section on the left hand side of the blog called "Cooking" (obviously?) after I put a few recipes up.

One thing I'll pre-warn you all about is I'm not very good with amounts and quantities, I normally just do it by eye, so hopefully we can overcome this together!

This recipe is one of my all time favourite Turkish recipes, as I love baking.  This is a perfect thing to whip up as an entree if you cut it in slices or just as a meal on its own,  I made these the other day for my partner, he loved them of course!

Cheese Pide:  (4 serves)Dough
2 3/4c  Plain Flour
7g (1 packet) Instant yeast
3/4c  Warm Water
2 Tbs Olive oil

1c  Feta cheese (if your feta is too salty, soak it in water for 10 mins)
1c Tulum cheese (this can be found at Turkish groceries, if you cant find it, use another cup of feta)
Parsley (optional)

GlazeYogurt mixed with water
Nigella or Sesame seeds
Olive Oil

-I used my bread maker to make the dough, but if you prefer you can always do it by hand.

MethodPreheat oven! (250 dC)

Place flour, yeast, water and oil together and mix until its just a little bit sticky but not too much, watch your dough, know your dough- if it needs more water add a little at a time, if it needs more flour the same applies.
When it has come together and formed a not so sticky ball, cover it in olive oil and leave to rest for as long as you can (an hour if you are in a hurry)

While you're waiting, crumble the cheeses and chop the parsley (optional) and mix together in a bowl.

Seperate your dough in to 4 pieces, rest another 15 mins. 

Pat down the dough into oval shapes, then use a rolling pin to make it more longer and wider.  If it sticks to the rolling pin, put a little bit more oil.

Put cheese mixture in the middle from one end to another, and start to fold the edges together but leaving it open in the middle.

Glaze with yogurt mixture and sprinkle nigella or sesame seeds on the dough.

Bake in a preheated oven at 250 degrees C on a tray lined with baking paper

Glaze with olive oil as soon as it comes out of the oven.


Thursday, October 6, 2011

New crochet oya scarf


This is the newest scarf I made to add to my collection.  It's crocheted with yellow beads, and white green and pink nylon thread.  It took me about 3 days to complete, and I'm extremely happy with it.  I was a bit annoyed to have to iron each individual motif so they would lay flat, but I guess its all a process that I should be pleased with.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Knitting and Crochet Patterns


So isn't it really annoying when you're looking for something specific and you have to go to 1000 websites just to find what you want?  Well for those of you who don't know, you don't have to!

Theres 2 pattern sites I swear by, even if its not for a pattern, even if its just for an idea!  They're all categorized so the only searching you'll be doing is ON the actual sight!  However, if you'd rather follow a pattern by a chart (which is me, but you know...we learn to adapt) then I suggest looking for them in another language like French, Arabic Whatever.  It seems that English patterns are almost always written, whilst European/Asian countries prefer a chart.  Anyway, here are the links:

For Crochet click here

For Knitting click  here

Weather has been weird over the last week, last wednesday it rained so much I thought we were going to get flooded, yesteday was really sunny and today it keeps changing.  Thats Melbourne weather for you!

Monday, October 3, 2011

How creative can you be when it comes to a scarf edging?


I've always liked quirky things, especially when it comes to things like lace, when things are supposed to be done a certain way, and a certain height, shape whatever.  It was to my suprise when looking for examples of "carnation oya" (mind you, depending on which area of turkey you come from determines what shape and the length between each motif there is.)  Now keeping in mind that in Turkish the same word for Cloves (the spice) also is the word for Carnation, I typed it in google to find examples.  After a couple of pages I found a photo of cloves with beads on them?  It wasnt until I opened up the photo that I saw that cloves had been used in an oya egding.  I laughed in sheer delight that someone actually thought to use cloves as a medium on a scarf.  I immedately told my partner about it who replied "yes this is probably used for a woman who doesnt like to shower because at least she'd smell nice then." - Great line.

So when I get the time, I'm going to buy a whole thing of cloves and I'm going to do it.  I think its a fabulous idea.
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