Kitchen tips

An easy way to prepare lasagna noodles?

Soak lasagna noodles in hot tap water for 20 minutes prior to using in recipe.  They will be soft enough for your recipe, but will not fall apart when handled when assembling your lasagna.  After cooking your dish, you will not taste the difference between boiling them and soaking them. 

How do you keep your fried food both warm and crisp?

When you are frying your food, for example chicken breasts, an easy way to keep your food both warm and crips until you are ready to serve your dish is by using a cooling rack.  Place the rack on top of an aluminum foil covered cooking sheet and place it in a warm oven. As you finish frying your recipe, place your chicken breasts, right on the cooling rack. This will prevent your dish from becoming soggy, keeping it crisp, while keeping it warm. The Rachel Ray Show 

Do your hands smell like onion?

After cutting onions, an easy way to get rid of the smell off your hands is to take a silver spoon and rub your hands with the spoon under cold running water. 

Spray Aluminum Foil before covering!

Before covering your casserole or cheese topped dish with aluminum foil, spray with non-stick spray.  This prevents the top of the dish from getting stuck to the bottom of the foil. 

Two Things to know when Cooking with Garlic!

Add garlic immediately to a recipe if you want a light taste

of garlic and at the end of the recipe if your want a stronger taste of garlic. 

Cooking Ground Beef Healthier

Add a teaspoon of water when frying ground beef.

It will help pull the grease away from the meat while cooking. 

Keep your bread warm. (Perfect for the Holidays!)

This will be good just in time for the holidays.  Go outside and get a few bricks, or rocks that are around the same size.  Clean them and wrap them up in tinfoil.  Place them in the oven and heat them up.  After, place them in your bread basket and cover them with a cloth.  Place your bread on top and the radiant heat from the brick/rock will keep your bread warm. A perfect for a nice dinner. 

Making frozen bread and rolls fresh again!

Do you have a whole loaf of bread, unsliced, in the freezer?  Some leftover rolls, or a half loaf of frozen, unsliced bread?  Want to make them good as new?

 Run the bread under warm water just to rinse the outside well, a few seconds.  Place on the rack in a 50-300 degree oven and check on it after ten minutes.  Voila, rejuvenated bread, hot and crusty and good as fresh. Tidbitz given by Karen K., West Bloomfield, Mi 

The Difference between Peppers! 

Peppers with 3 bumps on the bottom are sweeter and better for eating.  Peppers with 4 bumps on the bottom are firmer and better for cooking. 

The perfect way to crack an egg.

Used to getting bits of eggshell into your cracked egg when cooking? Try this....simply drop your egg lightly on the counter and a small crack will start to appear.  Rotate the egg, so when you lightly drop the egg again, the crack will continue around. Do this one more time.  Now you can open the egg perfectly without the hassle of any small eggshells in your cooking. Bon Appetite! Tidbitz given by Karen K., West Bloomfield, Mi 

Need coffee and ran out of filters?

Use a clean paper towel.  Cut the towel to fit into your coffee maker. Push down slowly into filter basket, and make coffee as usual.  I am enjoying my coffee right now because of this. 

An easy way to keep cheese fresher longer.

tore your opened chunks of cheese in aluminum foil.  It will stay fresh much longer and not mold!  

A great way to save & use your left over wine !

Pour your left over wine into ice cube trays and freeze.  You will have it on hand for when you have a recipe that calls for wine and you don't have to open up a new bottle just for that recipe. 

How to keep  your potatoes from sprouting buds !

Place an apple in the potato bag. 

How to keep  your celery crisp !

Place celery in aluminum foil when you place it in the refrigerator. It will keep for weeks. 

A few tips about Ginger!

Most recipes call for just a little bit of ginger. So what do you do with the rest of the ginger root? Fresh ginger freezes well, so place it in a ziplock bag.  (Make sure you squeeze all the air out.) Another benefit of freezing the ginger is the next time you need it for your recipe, it will be a lot easier to grate. The Rachel Ray Show 

An easy way to skin a tomato!

Bring a pot to boil.  Make a few score marks on the tomato skin.  Place in boiling water for 10-15 seconds.  Remove tomato and place in a bowl of cold water.  The tomato's skin will start curling.  You should be able to remove skin with your hands. 

An easy way to peel your potatoes!

Bring a pot to boil.  Score the potato with a sharp knife all the way around at about the middle of the potato.  Drop the potato in the boiling water for about 30 minutes.  Prepare a bowl of ice water.  After 15 minutes, remove potato from the boiling water and place in the ice water for about 10 seconds.  Take the potato out, grab in both hands and pull.  The skin should slip right off! 

Keep your lettuce staying crisper longer!

Take the end off of your lettuce and seperate the leaves but keep them whole.  Rinse leaves in cold water and dry as thoroughly as possible. Roll lettuce in paper towel and store in a zip lock bag with most of the air taken out.  Lettuce leaves should stay crips for 3 - 5 days. Tidbitz given by Frieda, West Bloomfield, Mi 

Helping your Guacamole from turning brown!

When making your guacamole, or even store bought, mix some lime juice into the mixture.  Also, when storing guacamole in the refrigerator, place plastic wrap directly onto your guacamole.  It is the oxygenation of the avocado that make it turn brown 

Making Your Bananas Last Longer!

Take your bananas apart when you get home from the store.  If you leave them connected at the stem, they ripen faster. 

Easy way to refresh your lettuce and celery.

Lettuce and celery looking a little wilted after being in the refrigerator too long? Fill up a clean sink with cold water. Place in sink and let soak for 15-20 minutes.  Your greens will come out as nearly as fresh as the day you bought it. 

Get all the sticky ingredients out of your measuring cup!

Before you pour sticky substances into a measuring cup, fill with hot water.

Dump out the hot water, but don't dry cup. Next, add your ingredient (peanut butter, honey, etc.) and watch how easily it comes right out. 

Ways to use coffee filters...who knew! 

and you can buy 1,000 at a time at the dollar stores for almost nothing....

  1. Cover bowls or dishes when cooking in the microwave. Coffee filters make excellent covers.
  2. Filter broken cork from wine.  If you break the cork when opening a wine bottle, filter the wine through a coffee filter.
  3. Recycle frying oil.  After frying, strain oil through a sieve lined with a coffee filter.
  4. Weigh chopped foods. Place chopped ingredients in a coffee filter on a kitchen scale.
  5. Prevent a Popsicle from dripping. Poke one or two holes as needed in a coffee filter.
  6. Put a few in a plate and put your fried bacon, French fries, chicken fingers, etc on them.  Soaks out all the grease.

(This tidbitz was given by my girlfriend Dense.)