Pillow Talk

I got with modern times last week and got a cheap Singer sewing machine which was considerably reduced and had great reviews. As much as I wanted a Janome or Bernina or other delightful powerhouse, my budget wasn’t going to stretch that far right now and I wanted to celebrate a little since I’ve got another part-time contract – this time for 11 months but I get all my worker’s rights to go with it rather than the temp contract I’m on now.

Louise very wisely brought me a pattern for pillowcases when I was learning with pao’s grandmother’s handcrank Singer and I figured that it was the best way to try out the new machine. I loved these pillow cases I’d made before.

I confess my heart had gone out of the idea of sewing after this little guy died as I knew how much he’d enjoyed himself and entertained me.

So on Sunday, I had an unexpected afternoon of leisure, I thought I’d see if Claude would step into Sirius’ pawprints as Most Helpful Cat Ever (Not with scissors).


He was fairly interested but the noise was a reasonable device to keep him from straying too near.


He liked to sit on the table with the fabric etc but wasn’t too bothered about cutting (phew). He is better as a paws off supervisor.


I’d had these three fabrics in my little stash for a while but no motivation to make something so they jumped out at me. I had been saving that little waving cat for a special project.


And here it is! I am very happy with the machine and how smoothly it runs. Time to put the sleeves on my dress now! (Yes, I know 2.5 years is a long time to procrastinate about sleeves but 2017 seems to be about finishing)

Savoury bread pudding

I had quite a collection of odds and ends of bread cluttering my freezer and I wanted a nice way to try and use them up. I like bread pudding and wanted to make something savoury this time. I found this recipe for a savoury sausage and cheddar bread pudding and wanted to make something similar. It makes a lovely brunch dish and I served it with a pepper sauce. You can make this the night before, then you can pop it in a cold oven and after an hour lazing in bed with your Sara Paretsky and a cuppa, you’ll have a great brunch ready.

1 small loaf stale bread or around 500g of bread odds and ends (I used a wholemeal seeded loaf)
1 medium onion
3-4 rashers of bacon, chopped
1 medium courgette, chopped
1 package of sausage meat (around 300-400g) – you can cut off the skins of sausages if you don’t have sausagemeat
Sprigs of rosemary
2 large handfuls of cheddar cheese
12 or so cherry tomatoes
2 cups milk
6 eggs
Butter for greasing casserole dish.
Salt and pepper (but if you decide to use some peppercorn sauce then leave this out)

Soften your onion in a frying pan with a little oil or butter. Add bacon and fry until crisp. Add chopped courgette to soften.

Add the sausage meat to the saucepan and fry until browned, breaking up large pieces to a crumble texture.

Cut up your loaf into small squares. Grease your casserole dish and layer with bread, cheese, tomatoes, sausage mix and then finishing up with a layer of bread.

Mix eggs and milk together and pour over the bread mixture. Sprinkle with cheese and put in the fridge for a few hours (overnight if you wish).

Put dish into a cold oven and set to 180C. It will be cooked after about an hour.

I serve it with a peppercorn sauce from a packet mix. It is reminiscent of the breakfasts I’ve had in the USA of sausage and biscuits so the pepper sauce is pretty nice.


Here is the lesser spotted photo of all three cats in the same room. We are making progress!