26 November, 2011

Bee Skep Salt and Pepper Shakers

Mr. T. and I are hard-core estate sale junkies and we love to find fun old things that fit just right into our old home. If those finds are a bargain, that's even better yet. These bee skep salt and pepper shakers are one of my very favorite Fabulous Vintage Finds. We picked them at an estate sale for six, count 'em, SIX whole dollars!  They are my kitchen salt and pepper shakers, good sized at around five inches tall, and they sit beautifully poised near the range for use while I am cooking. They're marked "Japan" on the bottom, and I have not been able to date them, but they appear to be old.  Online research makes me guess that they are about 40-50 years old.

Mr. T. and I were recently visiting John Day, in eastern Oregon, and happened to find the sugar and creamer mates to our salt and pepper shakers.  They were waiting for us in a stifling hot little antique shop on the main street that runs through John Day.  How could we resist them?  They were not the killer bargain that the salt and pepper shakers were, drat..., but sometimes you just have to pay real money for really great old things.  I suspect that there is a matching honey pot out there somewhere, just waiting for us to find it. Or... maybe a matching teapot! That would be the Bees Knees!, wouldn't it?

Update! Holy smoke, while perusing Pinterest, (my new most favorite thing,) I found my oh-so-elusive matching teapot! But, darn, it was already sold at an online auction site.  But the good news is that my hoped for teapot actually exists, and it's out there, waiting for me to find it.  I'll find one, out there somewhere, someday, I'm certain. Wish me luck!

25 November, 2011

Fall in the Burg

We have had the most beautiful fall here in the Burg, with mild temperatures, more sunny days than we usually see at this time of year and not too much rain. One of our Japanese maple trees is losing it's leaves in a big way just now.  They will all be on the ground in a day or two, so I just had to take a photo before they are all gone.

   The leaves even look pretty once they've fallen to the deck.  I'll be sorry to see them gone...

24 November, 2011

Jalapeno Thingies

It's Thanksgiving and during a lull in the meal preparation madness, we made Jalapeno Thingies, tasty
hors d'eouvres that have become a holiday staple for our family.  There is a bit of work involved, but they are so very worth it. I would never dream of eating a raw pepper, but somehow, cooking them takes away lots of their punch.  They're beyond delicious!

Start with about 25-30 small jalapeno peppers.  Wash and, dry them, then cut off the stems, but don't cut off the entire stem end.  Think of the peppers as being little boats that will hold the filling.  Oh, and don't forget to wear rubber gloves. I learned the hard way that the your hands can burn for hours after prepping these things. Slice the peppers in half lengthwise, then make a small slit at the stem end, as pictured below.  This will help you to pull the seeds and membrane out of the pepper.

We stuff ours with plain old cream cheese, but you can add a mixture of  feta, parmesan, herbs or whatever you like to the cream cheese.  After stuffing them, we add a piece of par-cooked bacon (par cooking really cuts down on the grease), or prosciutto.  We used to wrap a strip of the bacon, (cut in half the long way, then cut the strip into three portions) around the pepper but felt as if this was too much. I'll be honest here.  Wrapping the peppers with a slice of bacon is prettier, and I'm all about how things look... makes things more appetizing, don't you think? But for just us, the strip is fine.  If I were serving these to non-family or taking them to a party, I would do strips. We have used pieces of both here, half are topped with bacon, half with prociutto.  I like to put them on a wire rack and that goes on a cookie sheet.

Bake in the oven at 375 degrees for 20 minutes or until the meat is cooked and the cream cheese begins to brown.  That's it!  They're done!  They're so delish!  E-mail me and tell me how much you love them.  beesknees52@gmail.com  .