Monday, December 29, 2014

Easily Restore Used Pillar Candles

After the holidays, many of us are left with ugly, seemingly useless, pillar candles.  
DON'T THROW THEM AWAY! 
An old iron and a few minutes will have them looking new again.
To get started, break off the brittle, blackened wick tips with your fingers.  The thin edges of the candle tops can be cut away in advance with a knife if you like but it isn't really necessary.  The melting process is a quick one.
The old-fashioned iron, (without steam vents) that I picked up at a thrift store for $1, is perfect for this quick task. On a medium setting, halfway between Silk and Wool, hold the iron with the pointed side down so the wax pours off the tip.  Collect it in a heat-safe container like a Pyrex measuring cup. (If you use a regular, steam iron, hold it with the point facing up and let the wax pour off the heel of the iron so it does not get into the steam vents.  Running the iron across a paper towel when finished will remove any wax film and your iron will be just fine.)
Melt the wax down until 1/4" of wick is revealed.  I left the discolored wick tips but you can easily melt a little more wax away and trim the wicks to pristine white.  And there you have it.  The candles are shorter but certainly ready to be used again.

ADDITIONAL THRIFTY NOTE:
Stand used taper candles in an old candle jar and fill around them with the accumulated melted wax.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Imagine a Turkey Dinner as Finger-Food

Yep - it can be done - DELICIOUSLY!!!
Tiny toast cups that taste like stuffing, filled with gravy-coated turkey bites, topped with cranberry sauce.  One or two bites that fill the mouth with everything you love about a Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner.  The perfect finger-food for all those holiday gatherings.
Cut crusts from square, white bread and sprinkle with Poultry Seasoning and a little black pepper.  Ease the bread squares into muffin tin(s) and press into place with a small glass.  Place in cool oven (185-200) until thoroughly dry and crispy.
While bread cups dry, mix 1 1/2 to 2 cups of chopped, cooked (preferably leftover) turkey with 1/2 jar of Roasted Turkey Gravy.  (will fill 18 bread cups)
Fill toasted bread cups with turkey/gravy mixture...
top with a little Jellied Cranberry Sauce.  Place a piece of foil lightly over the top of the pan(s) to keep toast tips from over-browning and bake 7 minutes at 300 degrees.  Remove foil and allow tips to brown slightly, about 2 minutes.  Lift cups to serving tray and enjoy.  The little cups of deliciousness are not at all messy as finger-food and the flavor is amazing.

BUT IF YOU PREFER HAM...
try this:
 Spread a can of separated Crescent Rolls with a mixture of drained Sweet Potatoes (small can) and very well drained Crushed Pineapple (small can).  Add 1 tsp. Cinnamon and mix well to form a spreadable paste.  Top mixture coated Crescents with thinly sliced ham and roll up.  Bake 1 to 2 minutes longer than  directed on can. (Mixture covers 3 cans of Crescents)  Yummy!