What’s cooking? Or, perhaps, baking?
With Thanksgiving in the rear-view, the holiday season is officially upon us and whether we’ll be making latkes or fruitcake, there’s plenty to keep us busy in the kitchen.
One of my favorite aspects of this time of the year is the candy-making. Every year I try something new, in addition to the favorites I’ve picked up along the way. I found a delightful recipe for caramels that I make every single year (see below), as well as the easy marshmallow cream fudge. A few years back, I tried making peppermint patties from scratch, working up to a flavored fondant and let me tell you, I’m not doing that one again! What a mess.
I dug up some of my old aprons and will be trying to find a new candy to try my hand at this year. Do you have any ideas? What’s your favorite holiday treat?
My Favorite Caramels
(posted to Allrecipes.com by Barbara)
- 1 cup white sugar
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/2 cup corn syrup
- 1/2 cup evaporated milk
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Grease a 12×15 inch pan.
- In a medium-size pot, combine sugar, brown sugar, corn syrup, evaporated milk, whipping cream, and butter. Monitor the heat of the mixture with a candy thermometer while stirring. When the thermometer reaches 250 degrees F (120 degrees C) remove the pot from the heat.
- Stir in vanilla. Transfer mixture to the prepared pan and let the mixture cool completely. When cooled cut the Carmel into small squares and wrap them in wax paper for storage.
The Start of a Collection
What is it about aprons that makes us cling to, fall in love with and cherish them? I developed a serious crush on vintage styles back in 2003 when, looking through the vintage sewing books at the local university library, I stumbled into Roxa Wright’s 1953 classic, How to Make Aprons.
Ms. Wright included styles for every household task, variations on a theme like I’ve never seen: dressmaking, vacuum-cleaning, gardening, washing, baby-bathing, infant-feeding, wood-carrying and hair-washing.Each task has an apron pattern designed specifically for it. Who knew there was a style specifically for mending-while-you-iron? I was in awe of these and the styles we are all familiar with: patchwork and necktie aprons, ruffled and smocked aprons.
That book started an adoration with aprons that has yet to fade and for nearly a decade I’ve collected finished aprons and apron patterns, mostly of the vintage (or reproduction) variety. The ruffled pinafores and daintily embroidered hostess aprons are my favorites, but it doesn’t stop me from buying up patterns of styles I may only enjoy as cover art.
I’m happy to say that a quick search of the web found not only the original book (on Amazon for only $137?!), but it was released as a reprint this year by Bramcost Publications. If you love aprons, especially the vintage kitsch, this is one to add to your collection.
Where did your love of aprons begin?Tweet
Author and Apron Curator EllynAnne Geisel
Meet EllynAnne Geisel the creator of “Tie One On Day”, author of “The Apron Book, Apronisms and The Kitchen Linen Book”.
EllynAnn is the curator of “The Apron Chronicles - A Patchwork of American Recollections” – a traveling exhibit managed by ‘The Women’s Museum’ in Dallas, Texas., featuring 155 vintage aprons and 46 stories. She is also a designer. Ms. Geisel’s vintage inspired apron designs have been worn by Bree on the TV show Desperate Housewives. Find her books at your local independent quilt and fabric retailer.Tweet
Marilyn! Apron – Threaded Pear Designs
This apron pattern titled “Marilyn” by The Threaded Pear Designs was inspired by Marilyn Monroe in her famous white dress standing over the subway vent, in the 1955 movie “The Seven Year Itch.” It is available in three lengths with three different waistbands. Find this pattern and other inspiring apron patterns at your local independent quilt and fabric retailer.Tweet