I'm usually not very good at "nostalgia." I didn't keep any of my yearbooks. I think it's generally a mistake to go back to a place just because you used to go there all the time and you loved it. And I always politely decline the opportunity to treasure other peoples' stuff after they pass away.
That is, I always decline except for the other week when I didn't. In that instance, I happily accepted my aunt's offer to send me "a box or two" of knitting tools, yarn, books and patterns, much of which came from my late grandmother. In addition to the tools (which are amazing), and a Kelly-sized sweater's worth of gorgeous baby llama and silk yarn (already on the needles, pictured above), there were loads of extras to pass along to my new knitting friends (they were over the moon).
There were also musty folders of old, typewritten-fill-in-the-blank patterns from my grandmother's favorite yarn shops. There is not one photo with any of these patterns, most of them are for one size only, and the yarn, yardage, and gauge are absent from the instructions. So, even though I'll never knit these patterns, it was fun to see the names of some relatives for whom my grandmother had knitted various sweaters and to guess which ones she had knitted for me. Everything seemed to be in those folders, including the graph paper grids she had made of cousins' names when knitting their Christmas stockings.
The real paper treasures, though are these very old patterns, with revision dates of 1942 and 1918.
Make no mistake, times have changed. I can't even legitimately imagine when a reasonable plan for clothing the military involved the Red Cross handing out wool yarn and instructions to women who volunteered to knit "Gloves For Service Men" and "Medium Socks."
There's also this pattern, which based on the typeface, must have been from a couple of decades later. That Paris Hat! And Matching Dickey! What stylish Parisian would have been caught without a matching dickey? And what about the dickey? Gone years ago for good reasons, no doubt, but which ones?
I have no answers to those questions.
I also have no answer to the question I tweeted yesterday to Lucky Peach regarding how much butter I should add to their Sour Cream & Roasted Fig Pie. Wyatt and I had been drooling over the idea of this pie for a couple of weeks, and I finally bought the figs for it yesterday. As they were roasting, I re-read the ingredient list and the instructions, only to find that I was supposed to add an unspecified amount of melted butter to the filling. I guessed 3 Tablespoons. The pie turned out great.
My notes and changes:
- I used a frozen gluten-free pie shell from Whole Foods.
- I used 3 Tablespoons of melted butter. I have no idea whether that was right.
- I substituted a gluten-free flour blend for the flour. Because I was nervous that the pie seemed very runny (maybe I used too much butter--WHO KNOWS), I used 4 Tablespoons instead of 2.
- Because I prefer my child not-too-sugared (and because sometimes leftover pie happens for breakfast), I reduced the sugar by 1/4 cup.
- I baked the pie in our new toaster oven because: (1) we now have a toaster oven; and, (2) the big oven was busy cooking more stuffed tomatoes.
The pie was scrumptious. Creamy lemon curd flavor atop the most refined and sophisticated fig newton you can imagine. Bake one soon, while figs are still in season.