Thursday, June 18, 2020

Lockdown week 13 - quilts and cake

A day of two halves. In the morning, my friend came over and I gave her the quilts I'd made from the shirts of her late husband. Our coffee date was actually in the garden; she just came in for the photos. When we were discussing what she'd like, she looked at photos of ones I'd made and choose the tumbler shapes, quilted hearts and half-square triangle borders.

It's quite tricky to get the quilt the right width so that the triangles meet neatly at the corners - I've only done this kind of border once before - but I was quite pleased at the result here.

I'd found a £20 note in this pocket, so I sewed the pocket on the back and put the note in a little envelope.

And then I made a second quilt, because there was so much shirt fabric. This one was much quicker, though. So few corners to get right.

Then in the afternoon we went down to Daughter 2's Edinburgh flat and Mr L worked very hard. He put up the curtains and new shade so that the living room looked smart, and then we moved all the furniture from the bedrooms into the living room (thus ruining the effect) and also the washing machine into the hall, and he lifted the vinyl in the kitchen - so that we can get new carpets and vinyl laid tomorrow.

So that was less fun. But never mind; it's progress.

Lynda asked for the cake recipe. Here it is.

Coconut cake:
3/4 cup coconut milk
1/2 cup fresh grated coconut (only I didn't have any so used desiccated)
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
2 and 1/4 cups self-raising flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
10 tablespoons (ie 6 ounces) butter
1 and 1/2 cups granulated sugar
3 large eggs

Heat the coconut milk (though I didn't bother and it was fine). Cream butter and sugar, gradually add eggs, coconut milk, coconut, vanilla, then mix in flour and baking powder by hand. Bake in two 9-inch tins for 20-25 minutes.

I then used chocolate butter icing but the recipe suggests making -

Fluffy Coconut Frosting.
1/2 cup water
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large egg whites
1 and 1/2 to 2 and 1/2 fresh grated coconut
Bring water to boil with sugar, cover and cook for 1 minute without stirring.
Uncover and boil, stirring frequently until mixture is hot enough to spin a thread when a little is dropped from a spoon, or about 230F. Remove from heat. Whisk egg whites to stiff peaks. Still beating, add sugar mixture in thin stream. Continue till mix is fluffy again and holds peaks. Assemble cake with frosting between layers and put frosting on sides as well, then sprinkle coconut over the top and sides.

(You can see why I didn't bother with this. I didn't have any more coconut anyway but, well, chocolate and coconut are nice together and I'm a busy woman.)


  1. Both of those quilts are beautiful! I am very impressed with the tumblers, I started a tumbler quilt at the beginning of the year but they wouldn't sit straight (the rows of tumblers kept angling away) so I threw it in the cupboard in disgust. Yours is quite lovely, and hand quilted! No wonder your friend looks so delighted.

  2. Oh My Gosh!! Those quilts are both lovely. And your quilting technique is superb. Your friend must be quite overwhelmed. A lovely connection to her husband. That recipe sounds delicious - did you soak the coconut first? I've never used fresh coconut in anything either, but neither have I made a coconut cake - I've made something we call Louise cake, or more accurately, it's Louise Slice. You've been putting the hard yards at the flat - I do hope the flooring went down without a hitch.

    1. Hi - my quilting technique is really very basic, but thank you! No, I didn't soak the coconut first. And the cake was very nice - very coconutty.

  3. Outstanding work on the quilts. So full of meaning.

  4. Oh, thank you! And what's more, I even have the ingredients in the cupboard! I foresee coconut cake in my weekend ahead.

    No quilting though. I cannot sew for toffee and am awestruck in admiration at what you can create in that line.

  5. Chocolate and coconut are perfect together--yum! The flat is looking great, although moving furniture around can't be good for the back. I love the color of the quilt(s); blue is my favorite color!

  6. Wow, I am so impressed with your quilts. You always say you are a beginner quilter and those are beautiful. I'm very impressed with the hand quilting. Few experienced quilters hand quilt and you did such a lovely job. Even stitches and the heart pattern in lovely with alternating direction. Beautiful job. Patty McDonald

  7. I'm sure you've heard the jingle "You've come a long way baby!" It applies to these two quilts. Such nice work, especially matching up those corners and that lovely hand quilting! Nice touch with the 20 pound note in the pocket on the back. Such a nice way to use those shirts - a lasting connection. No wonder your friend is beaming!

  8. Anonymous6:20 pm

    Those quilts are quite wonderful, I don't know how you have the patience to make them - I know I don't. The pocket was an inspired addition!

  9. Oh Pam! Your quilts are BEAUTIFUL! You did such a wonderful job on them -- your friend must be thrilled with the result - she certainly looks happy. I love the pocket idea on the back too - you're so thoughtful. Well Done!!!