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  • Mary Kay

Tips and Tricks from the Angels

Try these ingenious kitchen and baking tips - all from my Angels

Enjoy these cooking and baking recommendations from my Angels. These are tried and true tips and shortcuts that they have shared over the years with friends and family members. These tips are sure to make your time in the kitchen easier and more fun.

  1. To get clumps out of the salt in your shaker, add a few grains of rice, especially helpful in warm weather.

  2. To keep meat from sticking on the outside grill, first spray it with vegetable spray or rub it with a vegetable oil. To avoid flaming, make sure the grill has not yet been lit.

  3. Tired of onion smell on your hands after handling them? Rub lemons or lemon juice on your hands to get rid of the smell.

  4. Add vegetable oil or extra virgin olive oil to the water when cooking pasts. This helps keep it from sticking.

  5. If you have cookies that harden and want to soften them, add a slice of bread to them in a sealed plastic bag. If you don’t have a slice of bread, try an orange peel or an apple.

  6. Want to have ripe bananas at the ready when you’re ready to make bread? Just mash some over ripe bananas and store them in a sealed container or plastic bag in the freezer until you’re ready to bake. Store them in 1 cup measurements to easily add to your recipes.

  7. Tired of battling curling bacon when you’re trying to fry it? Try pricking it a number of times with a fork before you line up the slices in the fry pan. The extra holes will help to allow steam to escape and flatten the slices.

  8. Getting teary eyes when peeling onions? Leave the root end on while cutting the onion. Or put it in the refrigerator for a while before cutting it. This should cut down on your teary eyes.

  9. Here’s a two-fold life saver for rolling out cookies. I never roll them out on flour because I don’t like all that excess flour or the floury taste on the cookies. I roll them out between two pieces of parchment paper. That eiminates all the flour mess to clean up and the excess floury taste.

  10. When measuring molasses, syrups, or honey for a recipe, do you get frustrated by not being able to get out all the good stuff out of the measuring cup? I brush a little vegetable oil, olive oil or butter in the cup first, then measure out the sticky stuff. You will see that every drop slides out when you tip it over.

  11. If you don’t like to peel garlic cloves, place them in hot water first and then they should peel easily. Another trick is to smash the garlic clove with the side of a broad knife. Then the skin easily separates from the good stuff. In some cases it won’t even matter if you leave the skin on, but I prefer not to add it to any of my recipes.

  12. Before adding blueberries (frozen or fresh to a batter) or raisins, or nuts, place them in a bowl and roll them in a tablespoon or so of flour to coat them. Gently fold them into the batter. Then they won’t sink to the bottom of the pan. Plus, the blueberry color will not spread throughout the batter.

  13. Ever wonder how to keep track of what vegetables have more great vitamins for the body? Just remember, the deeper the color of the vegetables, the more nutrition they offer.

  14. Has your brown sugar hardened? Add a slice of bread to it in a sealed bag to soften it.

  15. Unstick the intricate crooks and crannies of a Bundt cake easily by brushing or spraying the pan completely with butter or vegetable oil, then dusting it with flour. Freeze it for a about 20 minutes before adding the batter and it should easily separate itself from the pan after baking and cooling on a rack at least 10-20 minutes.

  16. Have you ever oversalted a soup or stew or vegetables? Cut the salt by adding a few raw chunks of potato and they will absorb it. Then discard the potatoes before serving the dish.

  17. If you want to add a little bit darker appearance for your gravy, add a few drops of Kitchen Bouquet. Mom used it all the time. It gives the gravy a very nice light brown color, so it's more pleasing to the eye. Plus, it has a nice flavor. I know some people add soy sauce, that adds way too much salt taste for me.

Do you have some special tips for making life easier in the kitchen? Be an Angel and send them to me, and I’ll add them to our list.

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