I don’t always notice Bride’s influence in my life, but it’s been hard to ignore lately what with all the spinning, carving, and baking going on in my house. Yesterday my lovely apprentice came over bringing her handspindle and some roving wool dyed red and I brought out my undyed roving and my bottom whorl spindle and we set ourselves to spinning. She’d taken an intro class the weekend before, but we quickly learned spinning is something you have to see done and do yourself to “get” it. After a little bit of frustration we were on a roll – look at all that yarn!
She gave me a bit of an evil eye for picking it up quickly, but she’s one to talk! Eventually I’ll spin as evenly as her. We’re both going to another class together to learn how to ply the yarn we’ve spun. I am so excited as there are so many spells to do that involve spinning! I even had a dream a couple of months back that Bride was teaching me how to spin and even what colour to dye my yarn. My first skein of yarn will probably be going into an indigo vat.
I’ve also been carving away. I need to finish a couple of things and then the next woodwork catalogue will be sent out. There’s been delays due to health and a busy life. This will probably be the last catalogue I send out until June as, after this, everything I carve will be made as stock for the upcoming Shamanic Conference and The Gathering Festival in May.
I also got up to some baking (Bride’s influence showing further) and made some mushroom and beef pastries. I made a basic flaky pastry dough with lard and a bit of oat flour mixed in with the pastry flour (super nummy, I highly recommend trying it). While the dough was resting in the fridge I roasted a hunk of prime rib with rosemary and garlic and sautéed two types of mushrooms with the same herbs. I also caramelized some onions after braising them in beer. I made a pan gravy with the drippings from the roast and the juices from the mushrooms along with the rest of the beer.
Then I cut the beef into little pieces and simmered it in the gravy. I rolled out the pastry dough and cut it into squares and add the mushroom and beef fillings into them with the onions, sealed them with eggwash and a fork, cut slits in the tops to let steam out and then baked them in the oven at 375°F for 15 minutes. They were super flaky and rich. Next time I’m going to try the same fillings with bread dough instead so I can make them larger, less rich, and easier to pick up like a calzone or a Cornish pasty… hmm and maybe add some goat cheese to the mushroom and onion one. I served them with gravy and mustard and a spinach salad – yum!