How to make a luggage tag

After my last trip (to the festival of quilts in Birmingham in early august this year) I ended up waiting for my luggage at Bologna airport and ended up having to put two (!) suitcases back onto the conveyor belt, because even though they were identical to my suitcase, they weren’t mine. So I decided to make a big and resistant luggage tag that would make it easy to identify my suitcase in the future.

Here’s how I made it:

The tag measure 10×12 cm. For the front I prepared a quilted sandwich of that size folding the fabric over on the top (the other three sides will go into the binding).

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For the backside I cut a rectangle of transparent plastic (the variety that you buy in sheets sa cover for folders etc.). I then took three pieces of fabric folded in half (right side out) that I sewed onto the plastic. I placed the fold over the plastic from the right side and sewed it in place. Like that the double raw edges face outside and will go into the binding).

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For the upper edge (where there will be no binding) I folded the piece in half wrong side out and closed the one long side.

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Then I turned the right side out and added it to the top ofP1000747 the backside just as I did with the previous three pieces (the seam upwards).

For the binding I prepared a long strip (at least double the three side lengths with raw edges). I joined the two short sides to prepare a loop and then ironed the raw egdes for the seam allowance towards the wrong side of the fabric on both sides.

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For binding, I placed the front and back sides on top of each other, right sides out and clipped the binding in place all around the three raw edges, folding mitered corners in the two angles.

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I started sewing just above the tag, attaching the binding all the way around the rectangle and then continuing on around the loop, closing the strip all the way round.

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Now all it takes is a cardboard rectangle where to write your information.

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And this is how it lookes on the suitcase:

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Have you made a project following this tutorial? Let me know what you think. Did you like it? Was it easy to understand and to follow? Do you have any suggestions?
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Giulia’s Rubberduckies baby quilt

It’s september and time to start about christmas gifts.
Here’s the baby quilt I made for a friend:

“Giulia’s Rubberduckies”

The design is “Rubber Duckies” by Paper Panache.
The pattern is 16×16 inches so I cut the single sections and fotocopied them at 200%. Like this I had the 32×32 inch center that I framed with yellow borders (4 inches on the sides and 10 inches on top and bottom) for a 52 x 40 inch baby quilt.
The front has been made with hand-died fabrics.

Isn’t it cute??!!!

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I quilted the water and rubber duckies in the ditch and left the border unquilted so it remained fluffy. I used a medium wool batting.
The backing is a cute childrens’ print with red stripes on top and bottom (I happened to have that piece of handdyed fabric that perfectly matched the stripes on the print).

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Here is a picture of a little quilt in the original size of the pattern, the whole quilt, borders included measures just 58cm square (22.8 in). The fabrics are similar, they actually come from the same dyeing batch as the fabrics in the baby quilt, but the yellow is stronger and the blues are a darker.

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How to prepare fish baked in a salt crust

This is a perfect way to prepare a bigger fish for several people. It’s pretty simple and just delicious plus it’s lean and healthy with no fat added.

What you will need:

Fish (seabream, seabass or grouper are perfect) enough for all people
Coarse salt 1 kg for one medium sized fish
1 lemon

Start by cleaning the fish, but leave it intact apart from the cut on the belly for cleaning. Cover the bottom of your oven dish with some coarse salt and place the fish on top.

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Then cover the fish completely with salt (just the tip of the head and the fin may peak out) and make sure the salt adheres to the skin of the fish.

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Bake the fish in the preheated oven (180-200°C) for about 40 minutes.

When done take the fish out of the oven.

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Remove the salt. Where it created a hard crust carefully knock on the crust to break it. Pay attention not to break the skin as you do not want the salt on the meat.

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Then open the skin in order to be able to divide the meat and place it on the plates.

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Serve with a slice of lemon and sprinkle some fresh parsley.

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Can you see the juicy texture of the meat?

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Enjoy your meal!

Did you try this recipe? Let me know what you think, did you like it? Do you have any questions or suggestions? Let me know, leave a comment or send me an email using the contact form below or using my contact details.

Delicious two ingredient frozen fruit shake

With summer finally having arrived in the afternoon it’s time for fresh and fruity and possibly healthy treat.

Here’s how to make an easy 2 ingredients frozen fruit shake:

All you need to do is mix equal parts frozen fruit (I especially love mixed berries) and skim milk in the blender.

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Add sugar if the shake turns out too sour, prepare in glasses and enjoy!

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Did you try this recipe? Let me know what you think, did you like it? Do you have any questions or suggestions? Let me know, leave a comment or send me an email using the contact form below or using my contact details.

How to prepare tagliatelle with fresh cherry tomatoes and shrimps

Here’s another quick and delicious Italian recipe: tagliatelle with fresh tomatoes and shrimps.

It’s really quick, you can make the sauce while waiting for the pasta water to boil and the pasta to cook.

Start by putting the water for the pasta on the stove.
In a bigger pan, heat olive oil and add a chopped onion and the fresh cherry tomatoes.

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When the onion becomes golden, add 250ml of white wine, or if you prefer not to use any alcohol, fish stock. Cover the pan and leave everything to cook.

Don’t forget to put the pasta into the water once it boils. Proceed by cleaning the shrimps, only the meat of the tails will be used.

When done, take the lid off the pan and squash the tomatoes. Then add the shrimps and cover the pan again for the shrimps to cook.

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By now the pasta should be done, take it off the heat and put in a strainer.

Take the lid off the pan, add salt and chili powder for seasoning (if you used stock, try before adding any more seasoning) and some fresh herbs (basil, persil and thyme work very well) if available.

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Stir the seasoning into the sauce, add the pasta and mix everything.

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Serve.

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Did you try this recipe? Let me know what you think, did you like it? Do you have any questions or suggestions? Let me know, leave a comment or send me an email using the contact form below or using my contact details.

How to prepare violet flavoured rice pudding

Rice pudding with the delicate flavour of violets

Ingredients:

Dried violets
1l / 184 gallon milk
250g / 1 cup Rice

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First pour the milk into a pot and add the dried violets.

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Let boil on low temperature for about 10 minutes so that the milk absorbs the violet flavor.

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Sif the mixture to separate the flowers from the milk. Collect the milk in a new pot.

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Add the rice.

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Cook until the rice is done and sweeten as desired.
Add food coloring to achieve the surprising violet effect.

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Or decorate with candied violets.

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Did you try this recipe? Let me know what you think, did you like it? Do you have any questions or suggestions? Let me know, leave a comment or send me an email using the contact form below or using my contact details.

How to prepare peaches with spirit

Simply put we are talking about peaches pickled with grappa. You can do this whatever kind of fruit you want and you can use different kinds of (strong) alcohol. “Rumtopf” is very popular in Germany. You start a big pot with lots of rum in summer and slowly add all different kinds of fresh fruit as they mature during the season. Then you leave it all in a dark place until winter when it’s a lovely addition to icecream and lots of other desserts.

I used peaches (they are a typical product of this part of Italy and so I always end up with lots more than I can possibly eat) and grappa. You will also need a little bit of sugar. The standard recipe says to add 250g sugar for every litre of alcohol, but I personally prefer to use not even half.

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First wash your fruit.

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Then clean it and cut it into medium sized pieces. Place the fruit and the sugar in your bowl. The mixture is supposed to be kept in the dark, so if you have such a container (e.g. ceramic) that’s great. I happened to have a 2.5l glass “mushroom” jar and so decided to use that and store it in the guestroom closet where it’s dark.

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Add the alcohol and make sure every single piece of fruit is completely covered.

Now it only takes lots of time for the grappa to soak the fruit.

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Close the container and store it for at least about two months. The fruit will conserve well, so you will be able to slowly use it up during the whole winter.

I had so many peaches, I prepared a smaller mason jar with peaches and rum. Another home-made little gift that will be ready by christmas.

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Did you try this recipe? Let me know what you think, did you like it? Do you have any questions or suggestions? Let me know, leave a comment or send me an email using the contact form below or using my contact details.

How to prepare “petit pot de chocolat” chocolate cream

This “little chocolate pot” is an absolutely delicious, rich, chocolatey cream. Bliss in chocolate!

Ingredients (serves 8):

600ml ( 2 1/2 cups) cream
4 egg yolks
1 egg
50g (1/4 cup) sugar
45ml (3 tblspoons) water
225g (1 1/8 cup) medium dark chocolate (I use half milk and half dark chocolate)

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Preheat the oven to 180°C (82° Farenheit). Prepare 8 individual souffle pans (holding 75ml – 5 tblspoons each) on a on a deep baking tray.

Bring the cream to a boil in pot stirring frequently so it doesn’t scorch.

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Mix 3 eggyolks, the whole egg and half the sugar in a bowl.

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Add the hot cream and mix well.

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Heat the water with the remaining sugar in a second, smaller pot. Stir frequently.

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Turn the heat off and add the chocolate stirring until the chocolate has melted.

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Mix the remaining egg yolk into the chocolate mix.

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Now mix the chocolate mix into the cream mix and stir well.

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Now pour the mixture into the pans and pour hot water onto the baking tray filling it about half.

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Bake for about 25 minutes then leave to cool for about 45 minutes.

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Decorate with cream and chocolate chips or with a caramale crust.

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Or, for a special effect, pour high percentage rhum on top and flambè in front of your guests.

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Did you try this recipe? Let me know what you think, did you like it? Do you have any questions or suggestions? Let me know, leave a comment or send me an email using the contact form below or using my contact details.

How to prepare Mousse au chocolat

Heavenly mousse au chocolate

Ingredients (serves 4):
200g (1 cup) medium dark chocolate (I use half milk and half dark)
3 eggs
2 tblspoons sugar
300 ml (1 1/4 cups) cream

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Heat the chocolate in a bain-marie (in a bowl over a pot with boiling water) and stir until it’s melted.

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Divide the eggs and pour the whites into a big bowl. Beat the eggwhites with the sugar until the mixture is creamy.

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Remove the molten chocolate from the oven and add the 3 eggyolks.

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Add the chocolate mixture to the eggwhites and carefully work it in with a metal spoon.

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Whip the cream and work it into the mixture carefully.

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Divide the cream into four individual glasses and leave to cool in the refrigerator for about 2 hours before serving.

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Devorate with whipped cream and chocolate chips.

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Did you try this recipe? Let me know what you think, did you like it? Do you have any questions or suggestions? Let me know, leave a comment or send me an email using the contact form below or using my contact details.

How to prepare candied nuts

Candied nuts are easy to make and make a great addition and decoration for various desserts.This time, I prepared walnuts, their slight bitterness makes a great contrast to the sweet caramel crust.

All you need is nuts and sugar. Place them together in a nonstick frying pan and mix the two ingredients.

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Place the pan on medium heat and stir often. It won’t take long until the sugar starts melting.

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Now stir continuously so that the sugar won’t burn.

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The sugar will start to form crumbs before it melts completely.

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Move the nuts in the melted sugar to achieve uniform coating.
Place the nuts on a baking sheet (I add a little pan-spray just to make sure it won’t stick). You can either place the nuts individually for single candy covered nuts.

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Or make one big heap and then break it into pieces when it’s cooled for candy brittle.

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Then eat as a special treat or use for decoration.

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Did you try this recipe? Let me know what you think, did you like it? Do you have any questions or suggestions? Let me know, leave a comment or send me an email using the contact form below or using my contact details.