First off... the recipe for the Italian Herb Bread, Leah's version. ;) Below is a picture of one giant loaf. You can either make 1 big loaf or 2 smaller ones with this recipe.
Italian Herb Bread (T - tablespoon, t - teaspoon)
1.5 cup warm water
2 T sugar
1.5 T yeast
-mix the above ingredients together and let it get bubbly, 5-10 minutes
4 cups bleached bread flour (the recipe called for All purpose unbleached flour though, didn't have it on hand)
1 T salt
1 t Italian Seasoning (ok, I used a lot more than that. We like it 'round here)
2 t dried basil leaves (didn't have this on hand, so I used cilantro and oregano. Just a dash and a dab. I cook like that. ;)
2 T Thyme (I just dumped about a tablespoon - ran out of thyme. It's pretty forgiving about what herbs you use, so long as it still runs along the "Italian" type)
1 T mince garlic (I just crunched about 5 fresh cloves, a few pieces did fall out when I was kneading though)
-mix the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Add the yeast/water. Then I use the same container to melt 4 tablespoons of butter and added that in too. But I imagine you could use olive oil too.
-knead the dough for about 10-15 minutes. This is a nice easy dough to knead. :)
-place in clean bowl, cover and let it rise. I let it rise for about 1.5 hours at 80 degrees.
-punch down, split into 2 (if doing 2 loaves), shape into logs on a cookie sheet, and I think this is where you're supposed to slit them, if you want... but I keep forgetting and doing it AFTER I let it rise. You pick. After they're shaped into logs, let them rise again for about 45 minutes to an hour.
-turn the oven on to 350 degrees. Bake for 30 minutes. Eat and say yum! ;)
What I didn't mention about today's sew-in is that it's also the host's birthday. So I made her a fabric S.W.A.K. Envelope to put her birthday note in.
It's not really quilty - doesn't have any batting and it's not sewn down, just some binding around the edge. It does have a backing though.
But the host liked it so much that she might use it to hold her Chicago Quilt Show entrance tickets. :)
And finally, the Spring Block Swap. Isn't is such a beautiful variety?
I really like that hot air balloon. I think it's like 15x25 inches. I don't know if I'm going to make it the center or near the top. This is going to be a challenge to figure out a layout! :)
I haven't forgotten Fitzy, about the meme, just haven't had the time. I'll be adding a twist to my version though. ;)