Thursday, December 17, 2009

Knitting and Pumpkin Fudge

Winter is in full-swing on the Northeast coast of the country, and I'm loving it. Everything looks so fresh and clean, covered in its blanket of white. As I write, I'm watching my almost-three-year-old through the sliding glass door, stomp around in the snow on the back porch. She's thrilled.
Winter brings so many nostalgic feelings, and fond memories of warm, wholesome goodies. When one is snow-bound, what better way to stay busy and warm than to cook? Yesterday we made pumpkin fudge. It's one of my daughter's favorites. She frequently asks if we can make 'punkin pudge' for her birthday. I always promise her that yes, we can, and since her birthday is nine short days away, we made a practice batch yesterday. This fudge is so rich a delicious, not even a die-hard sweets addict like myself can eat a big chunk- just a little dab will do you! Follow the directions EXACTLY, or you could end up with a 9x9 pan of a delicious, but goopy mess:

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 2/3 cup evaporated milk
  • 1 cup white chocolate chips
  • 7 ounces marshmallow creme
  • 3/4 cup canned pumpkin
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

  1. Line a 9x9 inch pan with aluminum foil, and set aside.
  2. In a 3 quart saucepan, heat milk and sugar over medium heat. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon.
  3. Mix in pumpkin puree and cinnamon; bring back to a boil. Stir in marshmallow creme and butter. Bring to a rolling boil. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 18 minutes.
  4. Remove from heat, and add white chocolate chips and vanilla. Stir until creamy and all chips are melted. Pour into prepared pan. Cool, remove from pan, and cut into squares. Store in a cool, dry place.

I'm finally working down the second leg of the Hemlock longies. A 14-inch inseam is daunting, but with my 11-inch size-8 circulars, they're going faster than I expected. I hope to have the longies finished and ready to ship by Saturday, since I have today and tomorrow off from work outside the home. My only concern is running out of yarn. I have two ounces to knit the last eleven inches of the second leg, plus a 2-inch seed stitch cuff. Crossing my needles! This yarn is absolutely gorgeous, and while I wouldn't mind ordering a third skein for this project, that means waiting a week for the yarn to get here, not to mention shipping that costs more than the yarn itself. That's why I only buy Peace Fleece through co-ops.

For the last two days, my daughter has been prancing around the house on one of her toys, pretending it's a horse. It has inspired me to make her birthday present. I think she would LOVE a hobby horse. If work is profitable on Saturday, I plan to stop by my local JoAnns on Sunday after church for some brown felt and an appropriate size dowel. I'm really excited about it!

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