18 of the Best Kept Kitchen Tricks

kitchen tips

1. To get rid fruit stains on your fingers, rub them with a fresh, peeled potato or white vinegar.

2. Avoid putting citrus fruits or tomatoes in the fridge,the low temperatures take away the aroma and flavour of these fruits.

3. If you want your milk fresh longer,stop it from going off by adding a pinch of salt to the bottle when you first open it.

4. To clean an electric kettle with calcium buildup on the heating element, boil a mixture of half white vinegar and half water, then empty.

5. When storing Tupperware, throw in a pinch of salt to keep them from getting stinky.

6. When making a soup, sauce, or casserole that ends up too fatty or greasy, drop in an ice cube., the ice will attract the fat, which you can then scoop out.

7. If you have some leftover wine, freeze it in ice cube trays for easy addition to soups and sauces in the future.

8. After boiling pasta or potatoes, cool the water and use it to water your house plants, the water contains nutrients that your plants will love.

9. If you aren’t sure how fresh your eggs are, place them in about 10cm of water. Eggs that stay on the bottom are fresh. If only one end tips up, the egg is less fresh and should be used soon. If it floats, it’s past the fresh stage.

10. Keep lettuce fresh in the fridge by wrapping it in a clean, dry paper towel and storing lettuce and paper towel in a sealed bag in the fridge.

11. If you over-salt a pot of soup, just drop in a peeled potato, the potato will absorb the excess salt.

12. If your loaf of bread is starting to go stale, just put a piece of fresh celery in the bag and close it back up.

13. For burnt rice, place a piece of white bread on top of the rice for 5-10 minutes to draw out the burned flavour.

14. Don’t store your bananas in a bunch or in a fruit bowl with other fruits.Separate your bananas and place each in a different location. Bananas release gases which cause fruits (including other bananas) to ripen quickly. Separating them will keep them fresh longer.

15. Bought too many fresh herbs?  Chop them up and mix them with olive oil or butter in an ice cube tray and freeze.  Freezing them in oil prevents the herbs from getting freezer burn or turning brown.  When you need them for pastas, roasts, or sautéing veggies, you can pop out what you need.

16. Grow your own herbs. If you hate having to buy a whole bunch of cilantro when the recipe calls for a few tablespoons, consider growing your own.  You can get starter plants at your local garden center and continue successive sowing with seeds after that.  Pick a couple of your favorite herbs or spices and you can grow them by a sunny window all year long.

17. Save breadcrumbs to take to the park for ducks or chop up that leftover chicken breast to stuff in a treat for the family dog.   Fido is also a great way to get rid of that last bit of peanut butter from the jar, pop off the lid and watch him have fun.

18. Add Ice Cream or Marshmallows. When you get to the end of a jar (like Nutella or Cookie Butter) and can’t scrape any out, add some vanilla ice cream for a tasty treat.  A little creativity can turn excess snacks into a different treat too.

 
18 Best Kitchen Tricks

27 Easy Ways To Organize and Clean Your Kitchen

For many families, entertaining and eating is done right in the kitchen, which means that not only do you want a clean kitchen for cooking, but you’ll also want space for having company over. For those that have small kitchens, having the space necessary means making use of every nook and cranny. Of course you could remodel your kitchen, but that wouldn’t be very economincal.

These simple kitchen solutions will help you maximize your storage space, allowing you to keep your kitchen organized… but that’s not all! We’re going to be throwing in some handy kitchen hacks that make cleaning super simple and quick! When it comes to cleaning around the house, the kitchen should be your priority. Why? Because it’s where the FOOD is! And who wants the place where they store and eat their food to be disgusting?

Check out the following 19 ways to organize and clean your kitchen! [Read more…]

Ideas For Leftovers

Simple leftover ideas

We always cook more than we need to. I’m guilty of it and I’m sure you’re guilty of it too. If you are like me and unsure of what to do with lots of leftovers besides sending it off with my children and husband, here are some simple ideas for use of everyday basic leftovers.

1. Package extra pancakes and waffles as single servings in airtight plastic bags and freeze. When you need a quick breakfast, just reheat the frozen treats in your toaster.

2. Turn leftover mashed potatoes into croquettes. Form cold mashed potatoes into little balls, dip in beaten egg, coat in bread crumbs, and saute or deep-fry. You can also mix in crabmeat or salmon. [Read more…]

8 Simple Food Fixes

How to fix food that is too salty or burnt

Mess up a dish? Too salty? Burnt? Do not know what to do with cheap meats? Here are 8 essential simple food fixes to help you out.

1. There’s nothing more frustrating than over-salting a soup or stew you’ve spent countless hours and countless dollars in ingredients, making. Try adding wedges of raw potato or apple to absorb the salt. Simmer for 10 minutes or so, then remove the wedges. If your soup is still salty, sprinkle in a spoonful of sugar. If that doesn’t work, a dash of apple-cider vinegar may do the trick. Finally, try diluting with water or low-sodium broth.

2. And don’t despair about soup that’s too fatty. It can be fixed. If you have time, put the pot of soup in the refrigerator. Wait 30 minutes and then skim the grease from the top and reheat. If you’re short on time, add a few ice cubes and remove them as soon as you see grease sticking to them. Or try tossing a large lettuce leaf into the pot to absorb any extra oil. Discard the leaf once it looks limp. [Read more…]

19 Tips For Keeping Basic Daily Ingredients Fresh

kitchen tips

1. If you’re unsure of an egg’s freshness, see how it behaves in a cup of water. Fresh eggs sink; bad ones float.

2. Line the bottom of your refrigerator’s crisper drawer with paper towels. They’ll absorb the excess moisture that causes veggies to rot.

3. Don’t throw away sparkling wine or champagne that’s gone flat. Restore the bubbles by dropping a raisin or two into the bottle. The natural sugars will work magic.

4. If you need only a few drops of lemon juice, avoid cutting the lemon in half – it will dry out quickly that way. Instead, puncture the fruit with a metal skewer and squeeze out exactly what you require.

5. To keep herbs tasting fresh for up to a month, store whole bunches, washed and sealed in plastic bags, in the freezer. When you need them, they’ll be easier to chop, and they’ll defrost the minute they hit a hot pan.

6. A bay leaf slipped into a container of flour, pasta, or rice will help repel bugs.

7. Prevent mushrooms from getting slimy by wrapping them in paper towels before refrigerating.

8. To revive day-old muffins, sprinkle them with water, place in a paper bag, and pop in a hot oven for five to ten minutes. The steam created by the water will restore moisture.

9. Stop cheese from drying out by spreading butter or margarine on the cut sides to seal in moisture. This is most effective with hard cheeses sealed in wax.

10. When radishes, celery, or carrots have lost their crunch, simply pop them in a bowl of iced water along with a slice of raw potato and watch the limp vegetables freshen up right before your eyes.

11. Store crispy and chewy cookies in separate containers. If you combine them, the moisture from the chewy cookies will make the crisp ones lose their crunch.

12. Avoid separating bananas until you plan to eat them – they spoil less quickly in a bunch.

13. Put rice in your saltshaker to stop the salt from hardening. The rice absorbs condensation that can cause clumps.

14. Stock up on butter when it’s on sale – you can store it in the freezer for up to 6 months. Pack the butter in an airtight container, so it doesn’t take on the flavour of whatever else you’re freezing.

15. Another dairy tip: In order to make cottage cheese or sour cream last longer, place the container upside down in the fridge. Inverting the tub creates a vacuum that inhibits the growth of bacteria that causes food to spoil.

16. Believe it or not, honey is the only non-perishable food substance, so don’t get rid of the stuff if it crystallizes or becomes cloudy. Microwave on medium heat, in 30-seconds increments to make honey clear again.

17. Prevent extra cooked pasta from hardening by stashing it in a sealed plastic bag and refrigerating. When you’re ready to serve,  throw the pasta in boiling water for a few seconds to heat and restore moisture.

18. You can freeze cheese. After serving, put leftovers back in the original package, wrap it tight in plastic and freeze. Defrost in fridge a day before serving. This trick works best for soft cheeses with a high fat content.

19. Keeping brown sugar in the freezer will stop it from hardening. But if you already have hardened sugar on your shelf, soften it by sealing in a bag with a slice of fresh bread or an apple – or by microwaving on high for about 30 seconds.