Friday, October 30, 2009

Linen skirt

I actually finished this skirt ages ago - in January.  I saw this linen fabric on sale and thought it would be perfect for the Michelle pattern from  It was easy to make although ensuring that the contrast bands around the waist were sewn on straight was time consuming.  The bands were made from the underside of the fabric.

The original pattern has box pleats but I didn't like them so I changed them to knife pleats that point inwards. I also omitted the contrast hem because I wanted to keep the design simple.

The linen was scratchy to wear so I used cotton voile for lining and bias tape for the waistband facing.  The triple stitching around the waist is for decorative purposes (not that anyone will notice) and also helps to stitch down the bias tape.  The zipper is on the right-hand side of the skirt.

Total cost: about $55

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Baked Pork Chops with Pears and Potatoes

Here's another dish I made for dinner recently. Pears and potatoes with mustard and pork sounds like a weird combination but they actually go well together.

The recipe is from "Simple", released by Australian Gourmet Traveller. It's a good recipe if you want to try something different but it's also time consuming because the chops need to be marinated and the pears and potatoes have to be baked separately.

2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons of dijon mustard
3 cloves of garlic, crushed (I used 2 teaspoons of crushed garlic in the jar)
2 tablespoons of chopped flat-leaf parsley leaves
Olive oil
Olive oil spray
4 pork loin chops
4 beurre bosc pears (I recommend 6 if you like baked pears)
500g chat potatoes
grated parmesan cheese

Optional: cinnamon


Mix lemon juice, mustard, garlic, parsley and olive oil in a glass or ceramic dish.
Marinate pork chops in mixture for a least an hour

Put pears and potatoes in a baking dish and spray with olive oil. Sprinkle cinnamon onto pears - this brings out the flavour. Bake until cooked.

Brown pork chops in a fry pan for 1-2 minutes on each side. Place chops in the baking dish on top of the pears and potatoes. Bake at 180c for 10 minutes or until pork is fully cooked.

Remove pork and rest for 5 minutes before serving with the pears and potatoes, sprinkled with parmesan. Serve with dijon mustard.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Pumpkin and Fetta Pie

Here's my first recipe since I last updated my blog. This pie is easy to make and I had some for dinner tonight.


3 sheets of puff pastry
500 pumpkin, chopped into small pieces
150 grams fetta cheese
1 cup of spinach leaves
Salt and pepper to taste
Olive oil spray


21 cm springform cake tin
Food processor

Boil pumpkin until soft. While it's cooking, crumble fetta cheese by mashing it with a fork and grind up spinach leaves in a food processor. Combine pumpkin, cheese and spinach in a bowl, and add salt and pepper if desired.

Preheat oven to 200 degrees.

Spray the inside of the cake tin with olive oil (the spray is a healthier alternative to butter). Line the bottom and sides of the tin with a sheet of puff pastry. Pour the pumpkin, cheese and spinach mixture into the tin. Cover with the third sheet of pastry (fold the sides over the top). Lightly spray the top with olive oil.

Bake for 30 minutes or until pastry is golden brown. Remove from oven and let sit for 5 minutes before serving.

Serves 4.

It's been a while

Well it's been a while since I last updated this journal. I've been quite pre-occupied with work and various RL activities - in fact nearly a year's gone by since my last post, which I can't believe.

I'm still sewing and trying out new recipes and will post photos when I have time.