Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Hooray for Hufflepuff!

Hello, all! My name is Alex, but you'll find me as TheAlexKlein on Ravelry. I'm the Hufflepuff 1st year blogger, and for this first post, I'd like to tell you a little about who I am and why I'm glad to be in Hufflepuff.

First off, I'm a graduate student, currently pursuing my MA in education to teach high school. It's terribly glamorous. I also have a dog named Abby who I got as a graduation present. She's two years old this month, and is definitely the cutest dog on the planet.


Some of my favorite things to knit are shawls, socks, and more recently, washcloths. My most recent washcloth was actually turned in for Herbology. You can read about it here, but here's a picture of it.


I'm also a new spinner, and here's a picture of my very first handspun, that I'm planning on using for a Calorimetry (homework for Transfiguration).


Now that you know a little more about me, let me tell you why I'm excited to be in Hufflepuff. First off, there is very little pressure to compete. I know some of you thrive under the pressure to compete, but part of competition is losing sometimes, and as one of my favorite bloggers writes constantly: "Knitting [or other crafting] is spoze to be fun." I do enjoy the friendly competition of seeing who can come up with creative projects for homework, but at the end of the day, if I'm making something, I want it to be enjoyable for me. I don't want to constantly be worrying about how I've let someone down or "failed."

However, don't count Hufflepuff out of the House Cup just yet. We have some great things planned for this term that are gonna knock your socks off! We believe that working in collaboration is much more important than going head-to-head with our Housemates and fellow House Cuppers.

Finally, one of the nicer reasons to be in Hufflepuff is the recipes. Anyone who knows me knows I love to bake, and there's no shortage of recipes in my cabinet. So as part of my weekly post, I'll bring you one of my favorite (easy) recipes that you can try out any time. This week is homemade biscuit mix (like Bisquick, but much better).

I modified the original recipe for this because I'm all about making things easier, and what can be easier than using self-rising flour? You can substitute this for any recipe that uses Bisquick or another brand of biscuit mix, and at the end of the recipe, I'll tell you how to make amazing biscuits and pancakes from it!

Homemade Biscuit Mix
5 1/4 cups self-rising flour (if you don't have it and don't want to buy a bag, use 5 cups all-purpose, 1/4 cup baking powder, and 1 tsp salt)
2 Tbsp sugar
1 cup vegetable shortening (or butter if you're anti-shortening)

Mix the flour and sugar with a fork, breaking up any clumps.
Add the shortening to the flour mixture by cutting into it with a fork (or a pastry cutter if you're fancy-pants) until you have pea-sized clumps. Store in an airtight container in your fridge for up to 6 weeks or in your freezer for longer.

To make biscuits:
Add 1/4 cup milk for every 1 cup of mix.
Continue adding milk 1 tsp at a time until dough sticks together (but doesn't stick to your fingers!)
Roll out the dough to about 1/2-3/4 inch thickness
Cut into biscuit-sized shapes, and bake at 450 degrees for 8-10 minutes, until lightly golden
You can add 1/3 cup of blueberries or chocolate chips for breakfast/dessert scones!

To make pancakes:
Add 1/2 cup milk and 1 egg for every cup of mix (This makes about 1 1/2 servings, but I eat a lot of pancakes)
As with the biscuits, add chocolate chips or blueberries (or any other sort of fun add-in) to the batter for deliciousness!

Anyway, I think this post has gotten long enough, so I hope you enjoyed it!


Onica said...

I love the Hufflepuffs!

Tricia said...

Beautiful handspun - and thanks for the recipe!

An Educated Rabbit said...

Excellent handspun (a talent I hope to learn one day)! Also, I'm quite certain the Ravenclaws will be jeolous you are a Puff once they see your recipies!


Shayla Myst said...

I want a puppy! (but not until late October). Your handspun is gorgeous!

BusyMomKnits said...


Rocky Moreno said...

Thanks for the recipe, I'll have to try it. And, awesome handspun! Can't wait to see your project 8)

Anonymous said...

Great post Alex! Your doggy is so cute!