Friday, January 30, 2009

Easy Ways with Cooking Chores

Shortcuts for the Cook by McCall's Equipment Editors
  • When recipes specify a double boiler, a standard saucepan in a skillet may be substituted.
  • To make a waxed-paper lining for a cake pan: Trace around bottom with a pencil; then cut.
  • To remove bits of shell or a bit of yolk from egg white, use half of the broken shell.
  • Line baking pans with aluminum foil. They will be easier to clean.
  • To cut sticky foods, such as marshmallows and candied fruits, use scissors dipped in hot water.
  • Don't be a fudge drudge. Butter an ice cube tray and its insert. pour in fudge, and cool, to produce uniform squares.
  • Recipe calls for a banana? To slice it with no damage to fingers, leave one strip of peel; then slice toward the strip.
  • Did you know that your blender is virtually self cleaning? Simply fill the container halfway with hot soap or detergent suds, and let it whirl briefly, to loosen clinging food. Then rise, and dry. Wipe base with a sudsy cloth, followed by a dry cloth.
  • Frost cupcakes in half the time: Dip top of cupcake into soft frosting; twirl slightly; and quickly turn right side up to dry.
  • Brown sugar soon dries out and hardens into a solid chunk. to break it up, remove lump from box, and rub it on the kitchen grater. or put a small piece of bread or apple in container, to prevent lumping.
  • When peeling potatoes, apples, etc. peel them over paper towels placed in the sink. it will be easy to dispose of the peelings.
  • When you are going to mix cold shortening with an electric mixer, heat the mixer blades in hot water for a few minutes. Prevents clogging the blades.
  • Melt butter right in the pie pan when you make graham-cracker pie crust. Add cracker crumbs, and mix. Saves washing an extra pan, and you don't waste a bit of butter.
  • If you need a wide piece of waxed paper, seal two strips together with a hot iron; seal cools in a few seconds.
  • A quick, easy way to make fine bread crumbs is to break slices of bread, which have been crisped in the oven,into food mill, potato ricer, or blender. A twist of the wrist, adn the crumbs are ready to use.
  • Mix French dressing in a baby's eight-ounce bottle. Measure ingredients by the ounce markings on the side of the bottle. To mix, screw on cap, and shake bottle vigorously.
  • Bake shortcake in your electric waffle iron.Use a rich drop-biscuit batter, and bake as waffles. Saves heating the oven - a boon on a hot day.
  • Turn won't meat with tongs or other blunt instrument, rather than a fork. You won't puncture the meat and let juices escape.
  • To get a new bottle of catchup flowing, insert a drink straw. This takes air to the bottom, and the catchup flows easily.
  • Use a wooden spoon to drain pineapple slices: Thread slices on spoon handle, held over a bowl.
  • Become expert with a French knife, to save time sitting or chopping vegetables. For example, do six fresh green onions at a time. There's a technique, and this is it: Hold point of blade on the board; raise handle; then slash through the whole bunch. Celery, green beans, asparagus, rhubarb can be sliced the same way. Use this method, too, for finely chopping parsley and green pepper.
  • Use a small funnel for filling pepper and salt shakers. Saves messy spilling, and it's thrifty. Handy, too, for pouring vinegar and oil into small-neck cruets. (Or for pouring hand lotion into a dressing-table container.)

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