I have been thinking lately of some of the little helpful tips that save me time and sanity in the kitchen. I want to share them in case they will come in handy for some of my readers as well.
1. Stop water from boiling over: When boiling noodles, potatoes or whatever, place a wooden spoon across the top of the pan and the water will not boil over. If you’re like me, it happens way too often that I put on a pot of potatoes to boil, walk away and soon hear the sizzling sound of water on the stove boiling over the top of the pot. But not anymore! I don’t know why or how it works but take my word, it does! I prefer a long handled spoon so I can grab the end of it to stir without it being too hot.
2. How to save burnt spaghetti sauce: I could have cried, and honestly almost did, the last time I made a huge batch of spaghetti sauce and it burned on the bottom of the pan. I browned my meat and didn’t let the stove top cool long enough before putting the pot of sauce on it. From the top all looked great but the bottom burned. I tried not to stir it in and spread the burnt smell and taste around. I went ahead and froze the sauce as usual and prayed that I would find a way to get rid of the burnt taste when I used it. After some internet searching I found a few different ideas. When I made pasta the other night I tried one that involves simply adding a spoonful of peanut butter to the sauce. Amazing. I could still smell the burnt smell a bit but you couldn’t taste a hint of it! Weird, but it worked and it saved me from throwing out a whole lot of sauce!
3. The secret to easy-to-peel hard boiled farm fresh eggs: Being chicken owners now we have a great supply of fresh eggs on hand. I usually keep a dozen hard-boiled for snacking and adding to salads. The problem I have been having is that peeling these fresh eggs after hard-boiling them meant loosing a good deal of the white that would stick to the shell. A friend mentioned adding oil to the water when boiling and sure enough, it works! I just pour in a small amount, maybe a tablespoon, to the water and boil as usual. The peels slide right off now!
4. Freezing in ice cube trays: Since I do a lot of preserving throughout the year, I am always looking for new and easy ways to keep foods. Ice cube trays have become my favorite means to do a lot of preserving. So many things can be frozen in small amounts in ice cube trays. Some of my favorite things to freeze in these are: cilantro, pesto, chicken stock, onions, peppers, and slushies. I’m sure I’m forgetting something and I’ll likely find more things to try over time. This is a great way to add a little flavor to a dish and to get all of the work of chopping done in one sitting rather than every time I need something like onion.