Who Knew? Helpful Kitchen Tips #6

Who Knew? Helpful Kitchen Tips #6

In our sixth installment of Who Knew? Helpful Kitchen Tips, here are ten simple fixes for common kitchen dilemmas. I’ve also included a few fabulous tips that readers shared on my last Who Knew? post. Do you have a useful kitchen tip? Please share in the comments below!

1. Fresh herbs are always the best choice, but if you’re in a pinch keep in mind that 1 teaspoon of dried herbs is equal to 1 tablespoon of fresh herbs.

2. Instead of flouring your pan before baking a cake, try using some of the dry cake mixture instead. This method will eliminate white floury marks on the sides of your cake.

3. Tired of ruining your reusable containers when storing tomato sauce? Try spraying them with a bit of non-stick cooking spray before filling to avoid those pesky stains.

4. Never store crispy and chewy baked goods in the same container. The moisture in the chewy goodies will steal the crunchiness from everything else.

5. Store leftover cooked pasta in zipper storage bags. When you’re ready to use again, revive by reheating it in a pot of boiling water for just a few seconds until warmed through.

6. Don’t ruin your expensive knives by using the blade to scrape things off of your cutting board. Always use the opposite dull side of the blade to save your sharp edge.

7. Planning on hosting a Superbowl party? Avoid stress by getting started early. Things like mixing marinades for chicken wings, shredding cheese and making dips can be done a few days ahead of time.

8. Give your pan time to warm up before cooking. This goes for everything, from meat to eggs to vegetables. A hot pan is key in creating a nice crust and preventing food from sticking.

9. Slice meat, especially tougher cuts, against the grain for more tender and delicious results.

10. Muffins have a habit of drying out overnight. Freshen them up by sprinkling them with a bit of water, then place them in a paper bag and reheat in a hot oven for a few minutes till warmed through.

 Reader Tips

Here are a few of my favorite tips that were shared by readers on the last installment of Who Knew!

You can clean red wine out of white carpet by pouring baking soda on it, wait until it turns blue and vacuum up every trace. ~ Mandy C.

When pickling beets, use the (strained) water that you used to boil the beets and nix the added sugar. That beet water is plenty sweet on its own! ~ Suzanne M.

To give your dough elasticity, put 1/4 tsp. vodka in and mix. ~ Anne

Just invented this one the other day. I have a ball of twine for tying up roasts and leafy greens in soups, but it’s always coming undone; the twine tangles easily and it can be tough to find the end. So I finally dumped the whole thing is a small plastic bag, took, left the end of the twine hanging out, and cinched the opening with a plastic band. Now all I have to do is pull and snip. Homemade twine dispenser in 8 seconds! ~ Susann C.

Do you have a favorite kitchen tip to share? Leave it in the comments below. Your tip might be featured in my next installment of Who Knew!

Comments (21)Post a Comment

  1. I keep a bowl lined with a plastic grocery bag out when cooking. When I’m done, the bag is tossed into the trash and I don’t even have a bowl to wash.

    Also, re: dusting cake pans, I always use a bit of cocoa powder to dust with if I’m making a chocolate cake. Can’t stand that white residue on a chocolate cake.

    1. There are steps you have to take. Either immerse them in hot or warm water/oil/vinegar or sauce, or grind them in your hands or a mortar and pestle to release the oils. You can also use a clean coffee grinder.
      They’ll work in soups pretty well, and on pizzas.

  2. To peel an entire head of garlic in about ten seconds… Put the garlic in a large bowl. Cover with another bowl. Hold on tight and shake the heck out of it. Take the ‘lid’ off and take out the peeled cloves. Discard paper. :D Quick, easy and fun.

    1. This works very well. It also works if you use a 1 Qt. lidded preserve jar, or any other large lidded container, to shake the garlic in.

      I better go shovel the driveway now…

  3. An easy way to see what you are doing and not get any white rind in with your zest, or miss grating zest, is to hold the lemon in your left hand (assuming you are right-handed), then turn your micro-plane grater over so that the little sides are up, and run the grater over the lemon the way you would run a bow over violin strings.
    You can see exactly where any remaining rind is, and the little sides of the micro-plane grater will hold in the little
    bits until you turn it over and thwack it on the edge of your bowl or pan.

  4. I recently learned that boxes of foil have a spot on either side that you push in. Once this is done the roll stays in the box when you pull on the foil. Sorry I didn’t know this years ago.

  5. 6. Don’t ruin your expensive knifes by using the blade to scrape things off of your cutting board. Always use the opposite dull side of the blade to save your sharp edge.

    Knives not knifes.
    I am an editor, will work for recipes!

  6. I discovered this when I could find my Potato masher, which is what I use to use before……..When you need mashed bananas for making Banana Bread or Cake, use a ricer, you’ll always get no lumps whatsoever…..

  7. Put DEFROSTED spinach into a potato ricer. Press handles together and “presto” no more water!
    Simple and hands are not freezing!

  8. To prevent the downdraft of your gas cooker from sucking off the heat under a pan, use 24″ or 30″ of Aluminum foil folded in thirds lengthwise make a “skirt” to wrap around the bottom of the pan on the fan side. Keep it handy to re-use it as needed.

  9. Fresh garlic bulb stored in an egg carton (i keep it enclosed with a rubberband) keeps it from sprouting for a long time.

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