kitty companiona

kitty companiona

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Food and Rughooking

Two of my favorite things.

I started this blog for rughooking, but I've strayed off in many directions.  One of the tangents has become my eating out experiences.  I love going to new restaurants and photographing the food and decor.  But I don't want to bore anyone from afar with interesting places in my area of south central PA that you may never have a chance to visit.

I've been mulling over the idea of starting a separate blog for restaurant reviews.  Nothing decided for sure yet.  And there IS Yelp, so maybe it isn't necessary.

So for this post I'll start with the rughooking and then if you don't want to go on the restaurant tour, you don't have to.

After I had asked for suggestions on the border, I kept hooking along, hoping I'd like it better.  I didn't!

I had taken the gold stripe out of the edge and that toned the brightness of the border down a notch,  but it still was too big and overpowering.
You gave me many good suggestions!   Thank you so much for all your input!
I tried to use the ones that would require the least amount of reverse hooking.

I tried rearranging the colors in the stripes, but ended up liking this conbination the best.
My final decision (for now!) is to cut about an inch off the outside edge and make the arches shorter. 
I cropped the photo to see what effect that would have.
They also seem to look rounder, which I think goes better with the circular flowers.

I'm going to have quite a bit of reverse hooking and adjusting to make it work, but what else do I have to do with my time???

I'll see if this fix is acceptable.

A few days ago I had this pasta craving.  I love pasta in all it's variations, with sauces of every kind, but once in a while I just want it simple.

I sent Zip to the grocery store to get fresh basil.
I probably posted a similar recipe before, but this is one of my favorite fast, easy and delicious ways to make pasta.  It's also vegetarian for those who don't eat meat.

Favorite Pasta

1 lb. box of spaghetti, linguine, or fettuccine.
1 large can of petite diced tomatoes or 3 - 4 medium fresh tomatoes, seeded
3 or 4 garlic bulbs, very thinly sliced
about 1/2 cup loosely packed basil leaves cut into strips, plus a few for garnish
4 T. butter
3 -T olive oil
Salt and pepper

Cook the pasta till al dente.  Drain and set aside.
Microwave the garlic in olive oil for about 40 seconds.
Put the tomatoes in a large pan (the one in which you cooked the pasta will work), add the garlic in olive oil, the butter and basil, simmer for about 5 minutes.  Add the pasta to the pan plus the salt and pepper as needed.
On low heat, stir until pasta is thoroughly warmed.
Serve and enjoy.

Last week when Zip went to music lessons, we decided to get a light dinner in Hagerstown. 

The Safron Bakery is a delightful little eatery near the Community College just off Robinwood Drive.  I forgot to take a picture of our paninis.  They were turkey breast with fresh greens and cheese grilled to perfection.  Zip and I shared a sandwich so that we could have dessert.  The desserts are to die for and created by the owner himself.

A friend of mine who lives in Hagerstown says that the macaroons are a favorite of her husband's.  She likes the donuts.  Zip and I went for the fancy pastries.  I got a cream puff with the most delicious pastry cream I've had in a long time.  Zip opted for tiramisu.  We were there just before closing time so the bakery case was getting empty.

They open early for people on their way to work, but close at 6 p.m.
To see more of the Safron Bakery products, please Google Safron Bakery Hagerstown MD.

Then yesterday we tried a new restaurant that just opened in Shippensburg PA. on north Earl Street near the entrance to Shippensburg University.

We stopped for lunch but they also serve breakfast and dinner. 

Zip ordered the cheese steak sandwich.  He shared some with me.  WOW!  One of the best I've tasted in a long time (maybe ever!)

I had the grilled chicken with roasted red peppers and feta cheese.  Yum!
They were very generous with the feta.

Everything was very nice.  The greens were fresh,  the french fries crispy.  Service was decent.  Tasteful atmosphere.  Prices were about normal for the area.

By the time we had finished the place was getting full.

We took lunch leftovers with us.
Since we had eaten enough, we ordered dessert to go.

This is the blueberry and lemon mascarpone cake.  Isn't it lovely?  And quite good!

 But the one Zip and I both thought tasted the best was the cheesecake.  Light, creamy and better even than I make.  And I make a darn good cheesecake!

 I can't wait to see their dinner menu!

If you're in the area, check it out.  It's a step above the usual around here!
Happy eating and hooking!



  1. Good morning Pat, I love the background in your rug. It is just right. I also like the new size of the border. The cheese cake looks devine!!!!!

  2. I'm not much for reverse hooking ~ but your cropped photo does look better with the smaller border!! Who knew?!
    For me, leave the restaurant reviews right here! I love looking at beautiful food and I sure don't need another blog to hop over to! You never know when I might get to your area and need to find a good restaurant! So keep up the good work!

  3. I am such a big fan of the border that I would leave it as is. I do like the food part of your blog. give me ideas.

  4. Pat.....I also love seeing all of your rugs and helpful hints and your recipe reviews are just,
    shall we say...Icing on the cake!
    You have a good thing going here...don't mess with perfection!

  5. Pat,
    I do enjoy looking at all the food and places to go eat around your neck of the woods! And you just never know when a blog reader will be in your area!
    I think you will really like the change to the smaller border on your rug and will make it worth all the reverse hooking! That was such a good idea to photograph it and see the difference! It is a gorgeous rug with gorgeous colors and deserves the work to make it just right! That's half the fun ( isn't it????) I don't like reverse hooking but have never regretted when I felt it was the right thing for a rug. So, Happy Reverse Hooking!
    Cathy G

  6. I Pat, I don't think I'm a very good critic because I think your rug looks beautiful both ways!

    The pasta recipe sounds great, simple food is often the best. In the summer I like to do a sauce like that but don't cook it. Just toss the oil, garlic, fresh diced tomatoes from the garden and basil together in a bowl and let stand for a hour or so, then serve on fresh cooked pasta. My brother-in-law who moved from Italy to Canada when he married my sister calls this a "raw" sauce. It is so nice in the hot weather with a crisp, cold glass of wine :-)

  7. I'm sitting here 45 minutes until lunch drooling over your food pictures. I love all the other interesting things folks share in their blogs...not just the rug hooking! I like the cropping on the border. It's a great pattern.

  8. Pat ~
    I think I gain a pound each time I drool over your food pictures. You and Zip go to such fun places!
    You should share your cheesecake recipe with us. {Please} I recently found one that everyone raved about and I'm NOT a baker.
    Your rug is wonderful either way. You are progressing nicely.
    It is a gorgeous day here in Ohio. Too bad I must go back to work. It would be a perfect day to work in the yard.
    Pug hugs :)

  9. Pat,

    We have yet to meet. I'm a big fan of your blog and hope you retain it just the way it is now...rughooking, food, and cats. I enjoy it when you talk about knitting, too, and have passed your blog on via link to both hooking and knitting friends. My sons, Jamie (17) and Jack (12) enjoy reading about your cats. We have 2 who are as entertaining.
    Keep on keepin' on!

    Kathleen in Central NJ...where it's another glorious day!

  10. Hi Pat. I would leave the border alone, as I believe it adds another dimension to the rug. I am loving the colors you're using! I am in agreement with the others...leave the food here on this blog.

  11. Pat, I'm so sorry that I haven't had time to visit your blog lately but it has been rather hectic right to bed time for me lately. Thanks for your comment on my blog.

    About your rug border, I love your border just the way you had it. And I love your adventure with food and going to restaurants and it's perfect right on this blog. I just wish that I could accompany you and Zip on your quest for the perfect meal. It all makes my mouth water. Hug , JB

  12. Pat I love your rug.. .but I always do... i may have to purchase that pattern for my next rug..!! the saffron bakery.. roger and I will have to try that seeing its in our neck of the woods...!! let me know when you will be going to grant street again.. and I will try to make it in .. havent seen you in a blue moon... miss you!!

  13. I love your gad-abouts! Going with you to the restaurants is great fun! I love your blog! The rug is beautiful either way! Love the colors!

  14. Border is much better toned down & smaller...Love it...and the flowers are now the focal point!

  15. Dear Pat and friends,

    You are making me hungry with all this good looking food that I am sure tastes also very delicious.

    The two passions you mention, creating and food certainly go very well together. Let's face it artist usually have a zest for life and that includes very good food. However my dear, we have to watch those calories and I should know having undergone enough medical problems in the last decade to last a lifetime. Still, I manage to enjoy the things I somehow feel I could not do without.

    Wishing you all the best,

  16. Hi Pat... I just love your rug. I think every color looks great.... And the pictures of the food, it makes my mouth water just looking at the pictures, can you imagine if I would have been with you, you would have seen the drool coming down the side of my mouth.... I am so addicted to food... And cheesesteaks I always tell my sisters, I hope there are cheesesteaks in heaven.. That is my favorite food, and of course pizza is next....
    Have a great rest of the weekend!


Thanks for visiting!