Saturday, January 19, 2008

Aebleskivers, antique stores, mother-in-law, and pure, unadulterated yarn greed

Look how cute my writing room looks when it's fixed up as a guest room! I love it. That cute little flag streamer across the bed was made by my friend Chary, out of all vintage fabrics.

My mother-in-law Sharon is visiting from California right now, and we have been out and about, and I have been a bad blogger. Here are Sharon and me:
See the stuffed robot I am holding? What a great find! Because you know what the problem with robots is? Usually they are not very cuddly. But this one is!

Sharon likes to plunder in antique malls, so that's something we often do when she visits, that we don't do any other time. It's fun. We went down to Sellwood, this southern neighborhood of Portland known for its antique malls. It was right after lunch, and for the first hour I was in a groggy, nap-time haze, zombie-ing my way down the aisles. At one point I carried around a mason jar of vintage rickrack for a while, but I was too tired to buy it so I put it back. Then? Coffee. And it was a whole new me. Though Sharon did not end up buying anything, I got an old Griswold aebleskiver pan, along with some old aprons and a cookie cutter and a big '50s diner icecream cone cut-out for the kitchen wall. Fun!

So of course, the next morning I wanted to make aebleskivers, which I had not only never made before, I had never had or seen before. Ha ha! Good old internet, I downloaded a video showing a chef in Solvang, California making them. I'm too lazy to find the link now, but I'll just tell you the traditional Danish method involves using a steel knitting needle to rotate the dumplings while cooking, and that is what I did. It was fun. Takes a while to get the hang of it, but I mostly did:
I started with just a few at a time and graduated to almost filling the pan. I filled the "aebleskivers" with pear sauce from Trader Joe's which is so much tastier than apple sauce. And then we ate them with blackberries, marionberry syrup, and powdered sugar. YUM!

Aside from eat too much, we also went to see The Orphanage yesterday -- it's the new Spanish ghost story produced by Guillermo del Toro. It's great! If you like a scary movie that's not gorey, and not even really TOO scary, but quite creepy and really well made and involves the most fantastic cliffside Spanish house you've ever seen, see it. Really good!

On the way to the movie, Jim finagled himself a stop at the comic book store by pretending solicitiously he wanted to stop at "Tuesday Morning" so his mother could browse there. So thoughtful of him! Incidentally, the comic book store is right upstairs from it! I was groaning inwardly, not always loving Tuesday Morning (it's a bargain store, where you can often get top brands for huge discounts), but then, ha HA! I hit the yarn motherlode!
LOOK at all this gorgeously colored merino wool! All for $2 or $3 a ball! This wicked impulse came over me to buy it ALL so nobody else could have any, and I DID. Well, not all, but I bought all the good colors. It was pure greed!

So that is what I have been up to. Cheers!


Kristy said...

You mean to tell me Tuesday Morning has YARN??? That is very bad news for me. Very. Bad.

Tyto Alba said...

Wow, I love your red writing room, Laini! :-D Those aebleskivers look wonderful...

Stephanie Perkins said...

Cutest writing room EVER! I love it.

Enna Isilee said...

aebleskivers, that's one of the coolest words ever. Seriously.

Your room is so colourful! I love it! The perfect room.

Annie Jeffries said...

Your writing room is outstanding. Bet MIL likes to visit because she can stay in there.

I have an egg poachers I never use. I wonder if that could be used as a makeshift aebleskiver?

Fabulous yarn. The nearest Tuesday Morning for me is in Modesto and I just happen to be going there on Monday. Perhaps they will have yarn too. Thanks for the tip.

Mary Beth said...

What gorgeous yarn - I can't wait to see what comes from it. Do you have plans for it yet? Your writing room looks so cozy!

Writer Bug said...

Your writing room is just adorable! I want one just like it. Someday... And that yarn will make beautiful stuff!

Heather said...

Oooohh...yarn drool coming from my face. Pretty, pretty colours!

I am now highly intrigued by the aebleskivers pan - when I saw that word in the title, I thought it was something to do with your book! Hee hee!

tone almhjell said...

Aebleskiver literally means slices of apple. In case you were wondering! And skiver is actually plural, so you don't really need the s, to be persnickety :)

Laini, I wanted to say that I'm really grateful! Have been stuck with a chapter in my book for weeks now, even after employing butt-in-chair. But then I tried the working-doc trick, and although I didn't think I needed it, it made a huge difference!

A brand new chapter six is now in the making, it didn't need fiddling, it needed to be completely re-written. Now there's a new part of town unfolding, with new nicknames for my teddyfolk, and new questions arising, and a whole new setting for the villain.

Don't you think it is mindboggling that you are helping me work on my story, in Norwegian, in Norway? I find it pretty amazing. Thank you!

Alex S said...

Those look just like my mom's ableskiver!!!!!!!!! I am so hungry right now! Do not forget that next Sunday is our first Sunday Breakfast Bonanza!!! I can't wait. I can't believe all that yarn was at Tuesday Morning. It can't have been there for very long. Anyway, I will see you later today for knitting and I will empty that basket of yarn into my basket of yarn. Please have a piping hot bowl of ableskiver waiting for me and I want to wash it down with a Shirley Temple. Don't let me down.

Laini Taylor said...

Hi Tone!
I DO think that is amazing -- and thank you for letting me know! (I love the internet!) Your novel sounds really interesting: teddyfolk! I wish you luck and stubbornness as you move forward with it. (And thank you with the aebleskiver info, too :-)

Q said...

Ah, yes, Laini, but the question remains--what are you going to DO with all of that yarn? Well, whatever you do, post pictures!

Fletcher of the Day said...

Hey Miss Laini,

Your Aebleskiver looks very similiar to what we make here called 'Poffertje's'. The pan is the same, but not so deep and ours are like little pancakes (also turned over with something like a knitting needle).

Yummy...I'm gonna go make me some poffertjes!


Amber said...

First of all, I love the room! I always love seeing pictures of your home, because it looks like no other home I hav ever seen in real life. And all the color is fantastic! (but what is the big blue thing, please? Couldn't figure it out?)

The yarn looks fabu. And I normally don't love Tuesday Morning, either. Too much clutter to wade through foe me. Like Ross.

I have never heard of those yummy looking things. Are they like round stuffed pancakes?


Laini Taylor said...

Hi Miss Lori! Yes, I remember poffertjes! We had them at the cafe at Keukenhof Gardens, as I recall, on that very-long-ago occasion when I visited you! Yum!

And hi Amber! The big blue thing is an antique porch pillar from Indonesia. We got it at the same Asian antiques warehouse as our teak day bed. LOVE that place. Love my pillar! (And yes, aebleskiver are kind of like little round puff pancakes.)

Rhonda the Stitchingnut said...

Wow, the aebleskiver's look wonderfully delicious to me and I had never even heard of them before. And the yarn, oh the yarn stash is beaut-iful! Is that Malabrigo? Sure looks yummy. I was at Tuesday Mornings to get storage boxes and it's a blessing I didn't see any yarn.

Melanie Margaret said...

Ethan was running around and out of the corner of his eye he saw the picture of you holding your robot. He wants you to know he loves your Robot (and asked me a million questions about yours like where did you get it, do you sleep with it, where does it live in your home!). He loves Robots too. He got a cuddly Robot for Christmas from Santa and his room is decorated with lots of Robots.
The way to a boy's heart is a Robot!

Anonymous said...

That is one gorgeous writing room...and I think that robot should be the honorary mascot for "Not For Robots," or maybe the only truly WRITING Robot?

Just happy to "see" you!