Turkey Tracks: Basket Blocks for the Parts Department

Turkey Tracks:  August 18, 2016

Basket Blocks For The Parts Department

I’ve always wanted to make some basket blocks.

The first one I tried will finish out at 5 1/2 inches.  I cobbled together a pattern from several sources.

Remember I am making multiples of four so my fellow members in the “parts department” group will each get one and I will have one.  And remember that the idea of creating a “parts department” comes from Gwen Marston and Freddie Moran–and they have several books illustrating and giving ideas.  One is COLLABORATIVE QUILTING.


The 1/4-inch seam on the basket bottoms was “iffy.”  I realized I had to sew higher up with a larger triangle and then trim to fix that.  That seam needs to come right at the basket point.  But I ran out of this cream fabric, so…

If I find more of it in my travels, I’ll fix the bottom of the affected blocks.

Here’s why it is a good idea to trial out a few blocks so you see what the issues are.


Next I moved on to a 3 1/2 inch block from Bonnie Hunter.  She did a WHOLE QUILT of these babies, “Lucy’s Baskets,” in a leader/ender project in MORE ADVENTURES WITH LEADERS AND ENDERS.  I am in AWE as the handles are HAND SEWN.

The mustard fabric is one of the Japanese fabrics I am growing to love.



The blue and yellow fabrics are Japanese.



Fellow J&E Riggin passenger Jean West gave me the green fabric–which she got at Fiddlehead’s in Belfast when we stopped there.


The white fabric on the handle was embossed and proved to be a bit thick for these handles.  Another lesson learned.


The green fabric is Japanese.



Perhaps we’ll wind up using these tiny baskets in a foursome.  Look at the secondary pattern in the middle.


Or, not.  They can be combined with fabric blocks as well, so that each one shines on its own.  It might be nice to put a surrounding frame on each one too.


Turkey Tracks: Summer Chicken and Corn Soup

Turkey Tracks:  August 18, 2016

Summer Chicken and Corn Soup


Summer corn is “in.”  Tender and sweet.  I had an ear every day last week.

Then, I made a soup with it, using 6 ears.

I started with a great bone broth–recipe is elsewhere on the blog.  I had so many bones saved the kitchen refrigerator freezer was getting too full.  I got two batches of bone broth from the bones.  I cook each batch in the crock pot for 24 hours.  It’s good to have bone broths frozen so you can make a quick soup if the right ingredients appear in your kitchen, so making two batches is a great idea.  One for now; one for the freezer.

I defrosted a sack of about six frozen tomatoes.  I drain off the water that emerges twice, then take off the skins and what is left is this lovely tomato puree–bright and sunny as last summer.  (I’m making room for THIS year’s extra tomatoes.)  I usually start the defrosting a day or so early and just store the puree.

I sliced the corn kernels from the cobs and put the cobs into the bone broth for 30 minutes or so of slow cooking.  The cobs infused the broth with a lot of added corn sweetness.  When I’m ready to pour liquid into my soup, I remove the cobs.

I sautéed fresh onions from Hope’s Edge, my CSA.  I added sea salt and carrots.  I added some raw chicken cut into bite-sized pieces.  When this mixture has begun to “color,” I threw in herbs from the garden:  thyme, tarragon, parsley, garlic scape puree I made and froze, etc.  Then poured in the broth and added the corn, some beet greens, and some chard.  I use what I have in the kitchen–which is a lot this time of year.

Once started, this soup is quick and easy to make.

The final thing:  into each served bowl I swirl some fresh, raw cream.  Pepper on the top is nice, too.

This soup has a lovely sweet and bright taste from the corn and the tomatoes.