Thursday, November 23, 2006

Season of the Lost Mitt

And so it begins, another season of the lost mitt.

It started late this year. Usually, the first one is lost by Hallowe’en. But it has been warm and wet and I didn’t pull them out until these past few weeks.

I usually go through 3 to 4 pairs a season. Let me clarify that. I knit 3 to 4 pairs and proceed to lose them throughout the fall and winter. Actually, I only lose one of each pair. Like socks. They are a related species, you know. They branched off at the beginning of the Lanolinian Epoch.

My mitts are all basically the same pattern. A tube with a crocheted thumb. All fingerless so I can easily knit, type and run my fingers through my beloved’s hair. It’s cold and drafty in this old house, especially in the mornings. I also just love the look of them.

I used to make them with fine yarns. I once knitted a gorgeous pair of dark teal fingerless mitts that rose past my elbows made from Garn Studio’s Alpaca yarn. Leaf and vine detailing going all the way up the forearm and even a bit of beading at the cuff. I wore them once before I lost one. I’m not ashamed to admit, tears were shed.

I’ve learned to make them out of more reasonably priced yarn. By that, I mean yarn that doesn’t leave me eating turnips all week. I’ve also learned that it’s prudent to make them out the superwash wool. I swear they practically jump into the laundry hamper when I’m not looking.

I lost this first one of the season, a dark grey merino wool mitt in a lovely twisted rib and diamond pattern, somewhere between the video store and the liquor store. Bullets of shiver-inducing rain were pouring from the sky or else I would have looked for it. Poor thing, it probably melted into the grey of the pavement, pummeled to death by the rain.

Let’s have a moment of silence for that brave little mitt that sacrificed itself, heralding in a new season of lost mitts.

Its mate is still on the counter. Waiting, hoping that to be reunited again with its partner. Its kinda sad, I don’t have the heart to tell it that it’s hopeless. Its trying to be strong and gave me a nasty look when I began casting on stitches for a new pair last night. I can’t help it. My hands are cold.

I’m making this one out of sock yarn that I found in the discount bin. I reason that the strength of the sock yarn will prevent the wear and tear. It’s just wishful thinking on my part that they would ever stick around that long to get worn out.

I'm using a simple ribbed pattern for the palm and wrist part and to maybe turn those ribs into cabling as it carries up the forearm.

A sane person would simply replace the missing mitt. A sane person would stock up on one yarn and dedicate that for mitts alone. A sane person wouldn’t be knitting the mitt equivalent of aran sweater. A sane person would get a heater.

Oh right, I forgot...sane people don’t knit.

Onto some food stuff…

My DH and I play this little game where I stealthily see how little flesh I can get away with serving him. His job is to detect when I have begun this meat rationing. I have found that if go completely meatless, he notices it within two meals and starts grumbling about how he’s an Inuit and therefore genetically predisposed to being a carnivore and my vegetarian tendencies will be the death of him.

I actually like flesh. I just think we as a society eat too much of it. I'd rather spend my money on smaller amounts of locally grown, ethically raised, environmentally sustainable, higher quality flesh than spending the same amount on buying a huge amount of factory farmed, doped-up Walmart flesh from who knows where. It’s also way better eats. I swear, the reason why so many beasts like frog to snake to rats are often touted as tasting like chicken is because we're nation that has no freaking idea what a real chicken is supposed to taste like.

I just use less but I get more out of it. Most meals only have a couple of ounces of meat but it’s good, tasty local meat that actually tastes like something that used to roam and live well. By using better quality meats, I can use less of it and DH doesn’t feel like he’s lacking for protein because he actually taste the meaty goodness.

But every now and then, even I want a steak. A good, solid, meaty steak bursting with unami bliss. Last night was one of those nights.

Here’s what we had for dinner last night:

Moose steak in a shitake mushroom- red wine sauce with roasted potatoes and squash.

The steaks where gifted to us from Kev’ family. I pan-fried them for 4 mins on each side over medium-high heat, along with some sliced fresh local shitake mushrooms. I deglazed the pan with a generous glass of Blue Grouse Gamay Noir, dumped in some already roasted up onions and red peppers and some sage from the garden. Scraped up all the lovely moose bits from the bottom of the pan and let it all reduce down to a third. Popped in a knob of good Island farm’s butter. A good pinch of salt, a couple grinds of pepper and it was done.

The potatoes and squash were from this weeks roast up. I simply popped them into the oven at 350F while I was cooking up the steaks. They were dressed in nothing more than a drizzle of balsamic vinegar, salt and vinegar. Simple, simple, simple.

The moose was just the shot of protein I was craving. It had the good, clean meaty taste of an animal that roamed the land. The earthiness of the shitake mushrooms and the full-bodied red wine sauce provided just enough complexity. Kev didn't talk throughout dinner except to grunt 'Meat Good' every now and then.

I actually couldn’t eat up all of my steak and saved half of it for lunch today. I’m thinking of tossing it in some udon miso soup with some roasted veggies. It certainly is noodle in soup weather today.

BTW, the Cedar and Yellow Point Annual Country Christmas Tour begins today. It’s a self-guided tour through the many artisans and farms in the Cedar – Yellow Point area. Kiwi Cove lodge is offering a special kiwi inspired lunch and Yellow Point Cranberries is offering tastings of it’s many cranberry products. Hazelwood Herb Farm, Malva Herb Garden and Fiddick’s Farm is also on the tour. This event runs from the 23rd to 26th. Check it out!

Happy Turkey Eating Day to everyone in the US.



1 comment:

abby said...

i always lose gloves like i lose umbrellas.
miss ya sweets
your bday is soon
i am away nov 30-3
and then again dec 15-22. we need a visit.
have you checked out my blog
i succumbed to blogging

xo a