Today I had a lovely few hours at the East Midland Modern Quilting Guild, or EMMQ for short. It is a group that has been set up here in the East Midlands by the lovely Moira, for individuals interested in quilting to get together, share ideas, work on projects, and generally have a great day of sewing. Today it was chance to take along any projects you wanted to start or finish off, and wow I was blown away by some of the quilts that people had finished, such beautiful colours and patterns. It was also interesting to see what other folks were up to and I picked up some great tips including the use of the sewline fabric pen to baste paper pieces instead of using basting stitches!! I wish I had known about this prior to the project I was working on today which required basting fairly small pieces of fabric.
I have just started the pretty petals English paper piecing project in this issue of Love Patchwork and Quilting. It is by one of my favourite bloggers Florence at Flossie Teacakes. Some of her paper pieced work is amazing and so very intricate, and although I am working on a hexagon quilt at present, but this project is by far more intricate and includes curves!. I did fairly well today by getting all the pieces basted and all the flowers sewn together so I feel like I have broken the back of it.
Along with the sewing today there was a fine selection of food available in the form of a faith lunch. We all took something along, and my contribution was the following soup, a perfect winter warmer with a slight afterglow ( The hubster’s description of it!)
Spicy Butternut Squash and Leek Soup
1 butternut Squash, peeled, deseeded and cut into chunks
1 leek, washed and sliced
1 dried red chilli chopped
200g diced pancetta/ Bacon lardons
2 tsp ground cumin
1 litre Chicken stock
- Fry the pancetta in a little olive oil until browned and slightly crisped.
- Turn down the heat and add the leek and red chilli and fry until softened
- Add the butternut squash and fry for a further 5 minutes.
- Add the ground cumin and stir to coat all the ingredients
- Add the hot stock, bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer for approximately 20-25mins
- Take off the heat and allow to cool a little.
- Puree in a blender.
- Enjoy as it is or with a swirl of sour cream and some chopped coriander
- For a vegetarian option omit the pancetta and use veg stock instead.
- Roast the butternut squash prior to adding it to the pan.
- Swirl double cream through and heat gently for a few minutes to give a more creamy consistency.
- Add chopped roasted chestnuts with the Butternut squab.