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Holiday Indulgence – Sweet & Spicy Pecans

December 24

Once a year I go crazy for sweet and spicy pecans. This year I tried making them with maple sugar. They’re not overly sweet. Traditional winter-time spices and the hint of maple…


spicy pecans

I thought you might like to make them, too, so here’s the recipe:


Preheat oven to 225 (convection) or 250 (conventional).

In medium bowl, beat one egg white with 1 tablespoon water.

In a larger bowl, mix together 1/2 cup maple sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon cloves, and a pinch of cayenne pepper.

Toss 1 pound of raw pecan halves in the egg mixture. Stir until evenly coated.

Transfer to sugar mixture and toss thoroughly.

Spread nuts on baking sheet with rim. Bake 44-48 minutes (convection) or 50-60 minutes (conventional), stirring every 10-12 minutes. Remove them from the oven when they have the desired amount of crunch. Cool in the pan.

You can download the recipe by following the links here: Maple Sugar and Spice Pecans Recipe

I don’t know whether maple sugar is available in regular grocery stores. I find it at my local natural foods store.

Happy Holidays

Merry Christmas

from AudKnits

Tonalita Sock Pattern – Now Free

November 18

free knitting pattern, free sock pattern, Tonalita, sock knitting, socks

Just in time for holiday and cold weather knitting, I give you my Tonalita Socks pattern… for free! Made of Trendsetter’s lovely, soft Tonalita yarn, the socks are just right for lounging around the fire, giving as gifts, and even wearing to bed on those chilly nights when your feet just can’t get warm enough. Tonalita comes in lots of gorgeous colors. If you’re like me, you’ll end up making several pairs – they’re quick to knit, and its a pleasure to watch the colorways reveal themselves.


Here are the details:

Women’s’ sizes: S (shoe size US 5-6), M (shoe size US 7-8) and L (shoe size US 9-10)
Finished Measurements: 
Leg Length: 6 inches/15.25 cm for all sizes
6.5 (7.25,8) inches/16.5 (18.5, 20.3) cm
Foot Length, Approx.: 8.75 (9.5, 10.5) inches/22.25 (24.2, 26.7) cm
Trendsetter Tonalita (52% wool, 48% acrylic, 100 yds/50g/1.75 oz) (for substitution purposes:18 sts = 4” on US9 per ball band); 2*(2*, 3) balls
*Note: If you want a longer leg (such as 8”) you will need an additional ball of yarn
Needles: 1 set of 5 US#4/3.5mm double-pointed needles
1 set of 5 US#5/3.75mm double-pointed needles

You can download the pattern for free here:

Happy knitting!

Christmas Smock Top Socks

November 11

Just (barely) in time for Christmas knitting, I have finished designing the Christmas Smock Top Socks. This is what the Mystery Sock decided it wanted to become. I love the way the smocking stitch lends a quilted, cozy look to the sock’s cuff. It took some trail and error to come up with the right number of stitches and rows to form an appealing look once the cuff is stretched out over the leg. I’m happy with how the proportions turned out.

I chose Regia 4-ply sock yarn for its crisp stitch definition. In the pattern I call for 9 sts per inch rather than the 7.5 sts on the ball band. I just hate walking around on too-loose knitting. It feels like some kind of couture torture involving twine! At 9 sts per inch, the Regia make a smooth, kind-to-the-feet fabric.

The sock is knitted from the cuff down. An important design consideration was that the cuff must be knit flat so the smocking’s horizonal bars meet up properly. Trying to knit the cuff in the round wouldn’t work because the rounds are really spirals. The “rows” would never match up.

Once the cuff is completed, the yarn is joined and the rest of the sock is knitted in the round. I hid some ribbing under the cuff to make sure the sock stays up through all the Christmas day festivities.

If you like the way Christmas Smock Top Socks truned out, you may want to check out the Pattern Store.


Mystery Sock Goes Green

November 9

…and red. I just love Christmas, which may explain the Mystery Sock’s morphing into a holiday design. Jimmy the Vicious Attack Cat doesn’t care about seasonal matters. He’s just glad to have a project to curl up near.


Reversible Scarves by Audrey Knight

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