Make Hay while the Sun Shines

We have some summer here. We’ve been waiting a while. The weather man on the  local news said that it’s been seven years since we had such a spell of hot weather here in Devon. Seven years. I don’t know if he is right and I can’t be bothered to look it up and check, but it does feel nice at last to be able to walk around in summer clothes in the summer!

I am still on my cooking quest but have come to a temporary lull as I wait for some specialist ingredients to arrive. I’m trying out a different flour mix from Gluten Free On a Shoestring.  I have both of Nicole’s books and am awaiting the new one on bread to come out; even though I am yeast intolerant I understand that there are some yeast free recipes in there. All I can say is that her yeast free English Muffins are to die for, they have such a good flavour on their own but even better with jam or a poached egg. As a whole I don’t even bother with gluten free ‘bread’ recipes. Being a bit of a baker for years and making my own bread, bagels etc. the gluten free alternatives (even the ones I can eat) are enough to make me feel ill. The nearest I’ve come to a sandwich up until now are the gluten free flour tortillas from Jeanne’s – Art of Gluten Free Baking. These make great wraps and are the best I’ve found so far and, believe me, I’ve tried a few over the last 10 years I’ve been baking gluten free, first for my son and now for us both. I use lard in place of the butter and they come out just perfect, even better if you leave the dough in the fridge overnight and make them the next day. Try them, you won’t be sorry. Anyway, where was I? Yes, so, to make one of Nicole’s flour mixes you need pectin, not just any pectin but a particular kind. I’ve ordered this and it should be with me sometime this week. I have high hopes. I’ll let you know.

I did make this though

Coconut flan

You will find the recipe from the Real Food Forager. It is called the GF Coconut Multi-Fruit Tart, although as you can see I used only strawberries to top it as that is all I had. All I can say is that I had to fight to get a bit of this.

P1000126 Knitting then.

I promised to show you what I have been knitting and would I let you down? Well, yes I did last time – but not today. In the absence of a small child to model this you get to meet Agatha, don’t ask, I don’t know why I called it that, it just came to mind.


This is the first draught of the pattern I’ve called Menet.

Menet 106As I can’t stop playing around with things, I’ve decided to put some short sleeves onto this,

Menetand am knitting another in a different colour way to see if I like the sleeved version better.  I also have some lovely Wool/Alpaca mix yarn that I would like to try out for an adult version for the autumn.

The design is very simple and the stitch pattern easily remembered so it knits up pretty quickly. Menet is knitted seamlessly from the top down with minimal finishing. There is a button band at the back on the small sizes for ease of fitting (you can’t see in these photos), which is added at the end. This one is sized for a two-year old and took just less than four balls of yarn. The extra two colours used in the yoke could be knitted out of odd balls of yarn, only a few metres/yards are needed of each.

Keep your fingers crossed for the weather, tonight I’m getting the BBQ out for the first time in ages, it could put an end to the nice summer!

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