Starting the morning with a nice basket of warm muffins sets the tone for the whole day, don't you think?
This basket of muffins also happens to be modeling my new Ripple Linen Basket Liner. Muffins are a fun treat to serve when you have company and serving them in a basket with a pretty liner adds a festive touch.
For those interested, this is a basic blueberry muffin recipe from The King Arthur Flour 200th Anniversary Cookbook, but any muffin recipe will do!
When I have company and plan on serving something hot in the morning, I employ this little trick to lessen the preparation time in the morning:
Baking Tip #1: To make things easier and faster when you have company, prepare in advance by mixing the dry ingredients together the night before and also preparing the baking pan. That way in the morning all you have to do is add the wet ingredients and pop the muffins or whatever you are baking into the oven!
Seeing that muffins by themselves are perfectly delightful but do not make for a balanced breakfast, I generally also serve a fruit salad and something hot such as Irish style steal-cut oats.
I have toyed with the idea of knitting a basket liner for some time as I am always baking dinner rolls or muffins of some sort. I'm not sure that I chose the best pattern, though. Despite the seemingly simple design, I did not find this to be the simplest of knits. The first tricky bit is that you employ a figure-8 cast-on which I suspect is not the easiest technique if you are not familiar with using double pointed needles. I did find Hello Yarn's series of photos demonstrating this cast-on technique very helpful; having seen the photos, as well as being very comfortable with double pointed needles, I did manage just fine. The next tricky bit is working with the wet spun linen itself. I found the yarn to be stiff and uncomfortable to knit as well as having a number of small breaks in the skein. It is linen, though, and the finished product is worth it!
Project Specs: Approximately 1/2 skein Euroflax 100% wet spun linen; US3 straight and circular needles; Island Moss colorway; pattern: Ripple Linen Basket Liner from The Knitter's Book of Yarn; blocked dimensions: 13" square. The only modification I made was to continue the increases until I had 48 stitches between each marker. I did this as the finished dimensions of the pattern as written was for a 12" square, and I thought that seemed a bit skimpy.
Mr Puffy has asked if he might also have a basket liner for his treats. I've told him "we'll see."