Monday, November 15, 2010

My pierogi recipe.

There's a big discussion in Ravelry about pierogi. I am Polish. Pierogi are my absolute favorite food, because they are really, really good. I wanted a link to my pierogi recipe available to hand out to people.

So here it is: the Sandomierz/Lalka/Tybyrczyk family Hamtramck-style pierogi, with one minor edit that I PROMISE you will make you see sauerkraut in a whole new light.


3 cups flour
1 tsp salt
4 egg yolks (lg eggs - if the eggs are small use 5) 
2 tbsp oil
1 cup sour cream
2 tbsp water
Beat all ingredients in a large bowl. Trust in the measurements- it should be heavy and sticky, don't add water and dilute it.
Roll out and cut into 2" circles. This is about the size of a tuna can, which makes the ideal template.
Place about 1+tbsp of filling in each round.  Moisten 1/2 of of the edge with water, fold over and seal.  If you find a hole seal it with flour.  Drop pierogi into boiling water until they rise to the top, Drain, spread out flat on wax paper or cookie sheet and freeze.

To serve, fry in a pan with butter and eat with sour cream. To serve in a style more characteristic of Krakow than Hamtramck, fry in a pan with butter and onions and eat as is. I do both, but I more often reach for sour cream, because this is comfort food.


1 Med Pkg Farmers Cheese
1 tbsp Flour
1 egg beaten
1tsp sugar

2 cups mashed potatoes
1/4 lb mild cheddar - shredded
Mix potatoes and cheddar - cool before using

1 can Sauerkraut (16 oz)
2 tbsp butter
1 small onion
1-2 tbsp brown sugar
Saute onions in butter add sauerkraut.  Add brown sugar. Heat till browned. Cool before using.

The brown sugar is my "secret" for sauerkraut and tomato sauce. It cuts the acidity without adding too much sweetness.

You can also put your favorite pie filling into pierogi wrappers: when I was a kid we just took cans of  cherry and blueberry pie filling. I'm planning on updating these to a more "homemade" version, and I suppose I can update later. I also want to try making pierogi ruskie, which I had and loved in Krakow: dry cottage cheese, potatoes, and onions.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Good morning, blog!

So I'm sitting in my corner of the couch, knitting. I may be deluding myself into thinking that sitting here knitting in my PJs is the same as waking up early in the morning to go to school starting next Tuesday. Yep, it's back to school time. Which means I should probably get a move on finishing these:

These are the Duck baby socks from the Spring/Summer 2010 Knitty. I'm making them for an old friend who is having a baby! On a related note, I definitely need to knit that baby sweater I promised her.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Knit and Crochet Blog Week Day 2: An Inspirational Pattern

Blog about a pattern or project which you aspire to. Whether it happens to be because the skills needed are ones which you have not yet acquired, or just because it seems like a huge undertaking of time and dedication, most people feel they still have something to aspire to in their craft. If you don’t feel like you have any left of the mountain of learning yet to climb, say so! 

I've never, ever felt like my skill set isn't sufficient for any project. My skills? They are many, and they are solid. What really limits me is three things: experience, attention span, and yarn budget.

Let's categorize some of my planned but not immediately happening projects by these three things, shall we?

1) Experience: read, "garments intentionally made for other people". I don't want to inflict my garments on others until I feel comfortable shaping them to myself, and I've only made three sweaters for myself so far. Of those, I'm only truly happy with the results on one- that recently completed Ruby Blue, so at least I'm getting better!

I'm stepping out of this comfort zone right now, though. My little sister has the same build as I do- skinny but busty with broad shoulders- so I'm working on a Buttony Sweater from Oh My Stars for her for Christmas. I also have another Christmas sweater in the planning stages... what do you think about Jamesey from the Fall 2006 Knitty? I've always loved this one and have planned on adapting it for myself for ages, but between the time I found the sweater and now I may have met/seduced/fallen deeply in love with my partner :)

2) Attention Span. Have I ever mentioned that I have ADHD? No? Well then, I have inattentive ADHD. I occasionally bounce off the walls, but it's more likely that I'll get bored, fixate on something stupid and time-wasting, and forget about doing the boring thing. Still, I feel compelled to knit blankets. I'm thinking that they might be nice presents for my engaged friends and cousins, so I should probably get on it before they marry, fall out, and get divorced with the blanket still on the needles (just kidding, hopefully!) I also have some very, VERY close friends who I think will be getting engaged in the next few years, and I think they really deserve a Tree of Life Afghan or something similarly beautiful.

3) Yarn Budget. This is my eternal bane. Do you know how much complicated Fair Isle I'd be knitting right now if I had the money to buy dozens of balls of Shetland? Do you know how much I want to make Annie Modesitt's Corset Top? Yeah. I'd say I should get a job, but I have one as a research assistant, it doesn't come with raises, and it's a necessary gateway to get into the field.

On the plus side, in putting this together I may have found my blanket gateway drug. Expect to see this one on the blog soon!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Knit and Crochet Blog Week Day 1: Starting Out

How and when did you begin knitting/crocheting? Was it a skill passed down through generations of your family, or something you learned from Knitting For Dummies? What or who made you pick up the needles/hook for the first time? Was it the celebrity knitting ‘trend’ or your great aunt Hilda?

I learned the knit stitch from my cousin Jessica- her mom was running a "crafts club" at the time and taught her the knit stitch and not much else. Fun fur on pink sparkly acrylic needles, about as fun to knit as pulling teeth. But hey, I wanted to see if I could do it, and I could, then really promptly forgot about.

Fast-forward a few months, to March 2007. My friend Cait accosted me in the library coffee shop and made me pet some Malabrigo Worsted because it was soft, and told me that if I bought her some, she'd make me some socks. Since it really was soft and she seemed to enjoy knitting, I agreed, and we hopped in her Prius and headed out to the LYS. There, Cait came up with the brilliant idea that I should buy a set of DPNs too and knit my own socks. 

So there's my first project, worsted-weight ankle socks in Malabrigo. They now belong to my best friend Eol, so I have no pictures. It was certainly an ego boost, though, getting on Ravelry and finding out that 99.9% of new knitters are intimidated by socks when they were my first real project!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Knit and Crochet Blog Week?!

I think this looks like tons of fun, so of course I'm joining up. (And having prompts for blogging during finals week doesn't hurt, right?) Check the info out here on Eskimimi Knits!

As for me? Well, I did mention finals week, right?

(yes, that may be overdramatic for a mirrored image of John David Jackson's Classical Electrodynamics. at least I admit it.)

More knitting to come after I read about scattering theory... 

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Ask the Blogosphere!

As mentioned three posts ago, I am working on Ruby Red, from the Fall 2009 Knitty. More accurately, I am pretty much done working on Ruby Red, from the Fall 2009 Knitty.

(Look how well it coordinates with my Super Mario 3 t-shirt and the red plaid pj pants I put on after my cappucino betrayed me and coffeed my lap!)

My knitting mentor Lisa thinks I should put a band down the front sides in a diamond pattern. I know how to do so, but I'm not sure I want to- both because I want another finished object, and also because that plus diamond buttons might take the diamonds from a nice accent to a bit twee. I can see what her issue with it might be- namely, I have the body of someone a 30" bust is sized for, with a 35" bust tacked onto it. This pattern, knit in the 33" bust size, worked out to have a touch of negative ease over the boobs and a touch of positive ease at the waist and hips, giving it a nice drape and almost A-line effect that makes my somewhat short torso look longer.

Given that it will close over my bust as shown in the pattern and that Lisa has made and wears a sweater in a Noro knockoff with a massive entrelac panel down the front and a bias-knit back, I'm going to err on the side of not overdone and leave it as is.

Leave your thoughts in the comments, if you feel like it: would you not risk bringing on the twee or would you prefer having a sweater with more ease?

Sunday, April 18, 2010

FO: Gaia Shoulder Hug

This one's been sitting around just waiting for the old block-and-weave for quite a while.

The yarn is Noro Kureyon Sock, colorway 242. The pattern is Gaia Shoulder Hug, which I... have a few issues with. The pattern itself is very, very long for something I could explain in one breath. It could also have explained in a slightly clearer manner what it meant by "when the color changes", since as all of us Noro junkies know, it's never a seamless color change with Noro.

I like the result, though, and it looks less than precious, which is exactly what I aim for. I'll probably be wearing this as a light layer for summer, if summer ever makes it to Michigan.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Thoughts on loose ends.

I've been knitting blithely away on Ruby Red, and I'm down to the last... oh... 15? 16 rows of the second sleeve? At any rate, I will be done with it in the hour of knitting time I have in seminar this afternoon. Which means it's time to join and start the yoke.

I think that currently I am a victim of both startitis and complication-avoidance, both in school and in work. I've started my homework for both Mechanics and E+M for next week, but I can't bring myself to actually sit down and plow through the last of the derivations. I wrote up some conversion code for my telescope project, but can't sit down and debug it. I made a skeleton CV but can't seem to actually describe my experiences. I've got laundry in the dryer but I haven't pulled it out to fold it, and the load I did pull out and fold is still sitting on my couch. I've gotten most of the first sleeve of a Geodesic Cardigan (Connie Chang Chinchio for Knitscene) finished, but can't bring myself to tear back and add the extra length it really needs.

Definitely need to shake myself out of this today. I guess finishing the sleeve is a start?

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Print, "hello world"

I'm coming into the last few weeks of my first year of physics grad school. I've got four exams coming up (two are finals, two are qualifying mastery exams), and I'm working on something for my research group. Of course, this means that my knitting is flying along.

I've got a bunch of projects going, due to me having plenty of time in class and lecture but not enough to just sit down and work on a particularly fiddly bit. As of late, I've been primarily working on a Ruby Red sweater from the Fall 2009 Knitty. I chose Malabrigo Sock in Impressionist Sky, so it's light, but not delicate. The body of the sweater is chilling in my bag, but one sleeve is right here on the desk and I figured I could show it off.

(Yes, I did put it in my mouth so I could show you the diamond detail on the cuffs. Shh.)

I'm swapping some of my early handspun for some glass buttons from Sylvus Tarn, since she does a lot more "arty" projects than I do and will make better use of a hopelessly thick-and-thin, unevenly spun, brightly colored yarn that I've tried knitting up into any number of things and just haven't liked. We decided on 3/4" diamonds in blue and white to echo the diamond pattern, but I told her that if an idea for an accent color struck her that I'd be up for something wild.

Speaking of other wild things, I have some Zauberball in the Shadows colorway. Being in a sock rut right now, something just didn't appeal to me about knitting it into normal socks, despite the fact that I specifically bought it for making socks. So I started thinking about how I could deal with the long color repeats. One thought was a triangular shaw- NO. Bad Jax. Socks, not shawl. Then I thought about Sidewinder, which of course appealed to me since I now have Lee Morgan's "Sidewinder" stuck in my head. This is still a thought, but then I thought about how neat the long color repeats might look if I did the foot and the leg perpendicular to each other. Which made me think that it would be neat to knit a standard toe-up foot, then knit the leg perpendicular to it in garter stitch, attached on much like a shawl edging.

I'll leave you with this aside: am I the only one who, instead of knitting plain stockinette until the last few rows for plain-sock legs, switches to 2x2 rib/a similarly stretchy pattern where calf shaping would start to be useful? I'm sort of in love with the last pair of socks I did that way.