Sunday, October 12, 2014

Quiet Reflection Sunday- Harvest Time

Apple Season!! My favorite time.
Every year we go to the apple farm 
for fresh apples, cider and donuts.
There has been a standing tradition
in my family that I make applesauce.
I make a huge pot and then freeze it 
for the winter months. There is
nothing like apple sauce warmed
when it is sub zero outside.

I use a variety of apples for the sauce.
Core them and cut them up in large
pieces. I used to peel them, but I don't
bother anymore. Put them in a large
pot with about a cup of water. I add
a half to a whole cup of brown sugar.
Plus a tablespoon of cinnamon. Mix 
it up, cover and put it on the stove 
on medium low. Check it often for
the consistence until it's ready to
mash. We like chunky applesauce.
Remove from heat and mash. I use an
old potato masher. Allow the apple-
sauce to cool and then put it in 
containers if you are going to freeze.
Allow enough space on the top for
expansion. Put the rest in the frig.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

The Crock Pot Revisited, an unusual use

I have found a new use for my crock pot, as you can see from the pictures. I love to dye fabric but, I do not have space for an open fire and dyeing in the kitchen gave me problems with my allergies. So for weeks I have wandered around thinking what I could use to dye.

Recently I had my daughter and her family over for Sunday dinner. I dragged out the crock pot and made
a large batch of bolognese sauce. Unfortunately I was not happy with the results. I have had a love hate relationship with the crock pot. So after Sunday dinner, I decided to put my crock pot in the garage sale pile once and for all.

I'm not sure when it happened but a light bulb went off
and I decided to try the crock pot for dyeing. Why not? It has a long cooking time, I could use it in the garage and I did not have to worry about my allergies or a fire.

The process;

I filled up the crock pot with golden rod.
Added water and then the cotton fabric.
Add a good splash of vinegar to the water.
I added a rusty metal ring to weigh the fabric down.
Put the lid on and set the time for 8 hours.
After 8 hours I laid the fabric on the grass to dry.
When dry, I ran it through the dryer to set the color.
I then washed the fabric by hand and  hung it to dry.
And then pressed it again.

Couple of things, I over dyed some fabric I had so there
would be an interesting pattern underneath. When hanging to dry it will stain the floor. I will not be using the fabric for clothing as I am not sure if it will fade. The crock pot can not be used to cook in after using it for dyeing. If you don't want your hands dyed, wear rubber gloves.

If you would like to research natural dyeing I would recommend the master dyer, India Flint. She has some marvelous books on the subject.

Have fun and experiment!

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