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If you are looking for a quick holiday gift knit, or just an instant gratification project for yourself, check out Hand Like a Hole, a free fingerless glove pattern from Vickie Howell. Totally simple, yet with clever shaping and styling due to the multiple yarnovers that make the unraveled-looking part. The pattern is simple enough that adjusting it to different yarn weights would be easy, and it’s also a great pattern for a beginning knitter who wants to move beyond simple scarves a bit.

I used Cascade 220, a nice workhorse yarn, soft and easy to work with and widely available. Just one ball for both pairs, with a bit left over.

Handy prop item
Handy prop item

No, I don’t really have a wooden hand . .¬† well, I do, but it’s just for decoration ūüôā

Two Christmas gifts — done!¬† I’m loving it.

Fred Meyer was featuring cooked fresh Dungeness crabs for $2.99 a pound — how could I resist?¬† I pulled¬† Tom Douglas’ I Love Crabcakes¬†off the shelf and decided to go with Chesapeake Bay Classic Crab Cakes.¬† I usually make Etta’s Classic, but my daughter isn’t so fond of all the bell pepper in that recipe. And since she’s home from college on winter break, it’s¬†only polite ¬†to make food she likes.¬†¬† The recipe calls for Old Bay Seasoning, but my can of that tasty mix¬†was at least 10 years old, with pretty much only the celery seed retaining any flavor.¬† So, off to the internet to find a recipe. This one looked good, so I made up a small batch.

Tools of the trade

Tools of the trade

Crabs were duly cracked and picked over, the Old Bay mayonnaise gently folded around the crab meat, breadcrumbs were pressed into the  delicate patties (note to self: drain crab meat before mixing in mayo, it was rather more liquid than it should have been), and then the crabcakes were put in the fridge to rest  and firm up for a couple of hours.

I DO love crabcakes!

I DO love crabcakes!

Gently sauteed in butter, these tender morsels were a treat. The¬† mix of fresh spices in the Old Bay seasoning were a revelation: home ground bay leaves, ginger, clove, allspice, even a touch of cardamom.¬† This made for a crabcake of unparalleled¬†flavor, yet didn’t overwhelm the delicate sweetness of the crabmeat.¬† A batch of the seasoning poured into a pretty jar would make a great gift!