Help Around the Kitchen
Ideas for September
Welcome the first signs of fall with easy weeknight meals and more.
Neutralize lunchbox odors by storing a spill-proof box of baking soda inside when not in use.
Make fresh summer corn last: Blanch corn on the cob then dry completely before transferring to freezer bags for up to 3 months. Dunk into boiling water for a minute or two to revive the sweet crunch.
Bobby's Roasted Corn Guacamole
When serving ice cream to a crowd, scoop the ice cream beforehand and re-freeze on a rimmed baking sheet.
Make Your Own Sundaes
It’s National Waffle Week, so mix things up by adding to the batter combinations like crumbled bacon and blue cheese for dinner or chocolate chips and chopped walnuts for dessert.
Or Make Chicken and Waffles
Place items for crushing (like peppercorns or candy) in a resealable plastic bag to keep them contained while crushing with a rolling pin or the underside of a skillet.
Mustard and Peppercorn Crusted Rib-Eye
Go beyond s'mores for snacks at your next campfire. Try threading pound cake, breadstick dough or even stuffed peppers onto skewers.
Cook These Snacks Over the Fire
Use grated frozen butter when preparing a homemade pie crust—the small, flaky bits will quickly come together with the flour to form the coarse-meal texture that is standard in most recipes. The less the dough is handled, the flakier the crust.
Perfectly Flaky Pie Crust
Celebrate National Apple Month: It’s U-Pick season, so freeze extras for cooking — peel and slice, toss with lemon juice to prevent browning, then freeze in resealable plastic bags with the quantity marked.
If a cake has cooled completely and is stuck in the pan, return to a hot oven briefly to melt the butter or shortening used to grease the pan. After a few minutes, remove the pan and immediately invert onto a wire rack to remove the cake.
How to Frost a Cake
Remove mushrooms from their plastic-wrapped bins and refrigerate them in a paper bag — the air circulation will keep them fresh for about a week.
Many Mushroom Dinners
Cool cakes upside down on a wire cooling rack for even, flat rounds perfect for layer cakes. If the top is still domed, slice it off using a serrated bread knife held parallel to the work surface.
Anne's Top 5 Tips to Bake Like a Pro
Use the cut end of a halved lemon to clean stains from plastic containers. Air-dry in the sun.
Homemade Natural Cleaning Products
Crack eggs on a flat surface for a cleaner break—eggs cracked against the rim tend to shatter more, increasing the chance for runaway bits of eggshell in the bowl.
How to Fry Eggs
Clean a reusable water bottle by filling it halfway with water and a teaspoon of baking soda. Shake vigorously before rinsing.
Best Bets for Baking Soda
Use a bulb baster to portion out pancake batter for less mess and more control over shapes and sizes.
Buttermilk Pancakes With Vanilla Bean-Berry Syrup
For an apple pie filling that won’t shrink, cook the apples first.
Double Crust Apple Pie
Store marshmallows in the freezer to prevent hardening or a big sticky mess. They soften within the hour once set out at room temperature.
Sandra's Marshmallow Treats
Keep plastic grocery bags orderly by storing in an empty paper towel tube.
More Double-Duty Kitchen Ideas
Pit olives by placing them on a work surface and smashing with the side of a knife. The flesh will break open for easy pit removal.
Tomato, Olive, and Rosemary Crustless Quiche
Line stacked nonstick skillets with paper towels to prevent scratches in the coating.
Smart Storage Tips
No need to dismantle the blender before cleaning — just fill it with warm water about a third of the way full, add a squirt of dishwashing liquid, then blend for about 10 seconds. Remove from the base and rinse.
Use Your Blender to Make Hollandaise Sauce
Tie a rubber band around the handle of a wooden spoon to keep it from slipping into the pot when you're not stirring.
5 Simple Soups
Happy National Family Day! Dress up a dinner of grilled pork chops by adding a quick and simple balsamic reduction sauce — just boil it down until thick and syrupy; add a sprig of thyme if you have it.
More Pork Dinners
Tofu is chockfull of soy protein. Refrigerate unused tofu submerged in water in an airtight container. Change the water daily and the tofu will keep for a week.
Tyler's Pan Fried Tofu With Ginger Soup
Use disposable chopsticks to scrape clean snared bits of bread from an unplugged toaster.
Multipurpose Kitchen Supplies
Make your pancakes extra fluffy. Substitute club soda for the liquid called for in the recipe.
How to Flip Pancakes
Whole grains contain natural oils that can go rancid, so store them in the freezer for longer-lasting grains.
Giada's Farro Risotto
The egg holders in refrigerator doors tend to be the warmest part of the refrigerator, where spoilage is hastened, so leave them in a carton and set on a shelf.
How to Poach Eggs
For a natural room deodorizer, transfer used coffee grounds to a rimmed baking sheet, spread thin and let dry overnight. Pour into a bowl and put it to work in a contained space such as the microwave or freezer.
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