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Friday, August 26, 2011

Amazing New Cookware!

I have been gifted the most amazing piece of new cookware, a 4-quart pot, thanks to my brother, Bud.

These pots are a natural product made from soapstone!

When I received it, the coloring was a light gray, both inside and out.



These pots do need to be seasoned before using. This was quite a long procedure, but well worth the time.

1. Apply a light coat of vegetable oil over interior and exterior.
2. Fill with room temperature water.
3. Place in oven.
4. Set oven to 350°
5. Bake for 2 hours.
6. Turn oven off, leave pot on oven rack to completely cool.
7. Repeat entire process again.

I did this a third time skipping the applying of the vegetable oil because it came out a little tacky from getting a little too much oil on it. Doing it the third time, was smart as the pot came out without being tacky feeling. The pot came out a very dark charcoal color once seasoned.



Soapstone holds the heat for hours, especially when filled to the brim with water. This process took 3 days, yes, 3 days!

Soapstone also shouldn't be subjected to heat extremes...always start the pot on medium low to get it heated and let it cool down before washing it.

Soapstone doesn't alter the taste of food, heats evenly, and is about as non-stick as you can get without using Teflon! I have read that it will keep cold foods cold for a long time, too.


The first thing I made in it was hamburger vegetable soup. This will be my new soup pot!



Oh, and the cleanup was simple, once the pot has cooled just wash it in hot water and soap.

The only drawback to soapstone is you have to be strong...this pot weighs almost 14 lbs. empty!
I am thinking of getting a soapstone pizza stone soon...

Thank you, my sweet little brother...love you!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Summer Is Winding Down

Another week has passed and it is time to check out Tablescape Thursday at Between Naps On The Porch. Thank you for hosting, Susan. Summer is winding down according to the calendar, but certainly not by the weather here on the plains!


To enlarge any picture, just click on it.


This week's inspiration were dinner plates I found at Savers on Sunday. We had to go pick up a piece of gym equipment for the town's recreation center...Savers happened to be on the way so I ran in to see if there was anything I couldn't live without!

I started layering with a woven placemat then chose a white charger (Certified Inernational)with a daisy pattern to place the Villeroy & Boch Romantica, circa 1986-1991 atop. It has an orange flower surrounding with little blue and white ones. The border is tiny blue polka dots and daisies. Blue and orange are a favorite color combination of mine. I try to use it often. I topped the dinner plate with a soup/salad bowl from Canonsburg Pottery in the American Tradional pattern.


The charger was purchased on sale at TJMaxx months ago. I think I may have paid a couple dollars each for them.


The V/B dinner plates were $1.99 each...Replacements. Ltd. is selling them for $39.99 each! How I wish there had been other pieces of this pretty china.





The rimmed soup/salad bowl.


The flatware is my old standby, Oneida Afterglow, circa 1956 and a solid orange napkin from World Market. The tarnished napkin rings were a thrift store bargain long ago.


The orange glassware is some I discovered at a little stripmall shop in Topeka a few months ago. The clear stems are Towle Leyland found quite some time ago at Goodwill.


The rim shot!


I used the same daisy arrangement from last week as it still looks pretty good. I just changed out the vase. This time I used an old tarnished silverplated ice bucket.




I will also join Kim at Savvy Southern Style for Wow Us Wednesday.

Thank you for your visit today...if it weren't for friends like you I probably wouldn't be blogging! Please do come back again.




















Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Vera Bradley Goes Blue


I am back from my vacation in the beautiful Green Mountain State. I missed most of the oppressive Kansas heat, thank you Lord...the weather in Vermont was beautiful, even the few rain showers we had. I had the opportunity to spend lots of enjoyable time with family and friends.

I can't believe it is time once again for Tablescape Thursday with Susan at Between Naps On The Porch. Please make sure you take this opportunity to view all the lovely tables being offered up this week. Thank you for hosting, Susan.

To enlarge any picture, just click on it.

Blue and white is a combination I never tire of using or seeing!

The tablecloth is from Savers, as are the white napkins. The flatware is Oneida Afterglow, circa 1956.

The white candlesticks were found long ago at Goodwill.

I have had two of the Vera Bradley 13" charger plates for ages. I found them at TJMaxx for a couple dollars apiece. I couldn't find another two until I checked on eBay. The seller was asking $29.99, which was a little more than I was willing to pay...an offer of $17.50 each was made...the seller accepted!


The dinner plate is by Totally Today, plain white with a raised design around the rim. These were found at Goodwill for 49¢ each. Most of the Goodwill stores in the area charge 49¢ for plates and most stemware.


The salad plates are Bordallo Pinheiro. I also found these on eBay for about a dollar each. I have tried to find the name of the pattern but so far have come up empty handed...so if anyone reading this knows the pattern, please let me know.


The underplate for the cobalt blue sherbet is stamped Federalist Ironstone which made dishes for Sears. The pattern is Mayhill, circa 1965.


The cobalt sherbets are also an eBay find. The maker and pattern are unknown.

The iced tea/lemonade/water glass is Indiana Whitehall and the clear wine stem is Noritake Provincial. These were found at either Goodwill or Savers.


The handled bowl I am using for a vase was found at Savers a few months ago. It is one of my favorite finds. The markings on the bottom are mostly Chinese. The front panel has what looks like a pair of storks or an ibis on it...the back panel is indistinguishable. The daisies are from the local florist.




Blue, white, blue white, blue!


Placesetting.


The table overall.


The table by candlelight.


Thank you for taking the time to visit my blog, I hope you enjoyed it. If you did, please come back again soon.