We all want to be Master Chefs in our own right. But all that fancy cooking comes with a whole lot of pre and post procedures, which could be quite a task! But why hamper your favorite hobby because of the tiresome tasks? Here are a few kitchen hacks that might just help you organize your kitchen better and make cooking more fun than it ever was!
1. Avoid Potato Oxidation:
Potatoes that are cut and aren’t cooked immediately tend to grey when left exposed. The potatoes emit a starch that results in oxidization. Solution? Well, add the cut, peeled or shredded potatoes to a bowl of cold water. This will prevent oxidation, and you will be left with fresh looking tubers, which are absolutely ready to cook!
2. Long Live Bananas!
Bananas tend to ripen really fast. Of course, the riper the banana, the better (or so says the cancer research). But if you want your bananas to last longer, wrap the end of the bunch with cling film. This helps to block all those ethylene gases that promote quick ripening. Another quick tip (if you don’t have cling film) – separate the bananas and store them!
3. Salvaging Cut Fruits:
A bowl of cut fruit is the quickest desert idea for the unexpected guest. But the downside is they tend to turn brown and oxidize, making it look absolutely unappetizing. A little squeeze of lemon and a mixture of honey and water (in 1:2 ratio) will not just prevent the fruits from turning brown, but will also add to the flavor. The logic is quite simple. The citric acid from the lemons and the peptides from the honey slow down the oxidation!
4. The Cracked Shell Mania:
The most annoying moment at breakfast is when you bite on a cracked bit of eggshell while chewing on your scramble. It almost ruins the day, and what’s worse is that pulling out the bit of that egg shell is a real herculean task. But worry not my friend, all you need to do is use a bigger bit of the shell (make sure it does not already have cracks or you will be dealing with many more small bits), and scoop out the bit from your egg mix. Believe us, it works!
5. Off With The Oil:
Gravies are yum!! But that top layer of fat could send you on a guilt trip! Let’s make it simple; the next time you want to remove that extra grease from sauces, stews or stocks, just wrap an ice cube in a paper napkin or cheesecloth, and skim through the surface. The ice solidifies the fat, and it makes it really easy to remove. Trust us, it’s easier than using that piece of toast.
6. STOP The Onion Tears:
Cutting onions is almost like a nightmare! It instantly gets your tear glands to work. We’ve got two solutions for this:
a. Toss your onions into the freezer before you chop them. But make sure you use this hack only if you are chopping the onions in advance, or else your onions will get a bit soggy once they are cooked.
b. Hold a slice of bread between your teeth, such that a little bit of it sticks out. The bread absorbs all the irritant gases before they reach the eyes. The clowning is worth it!
7. Butter Softening:
Amidst your morning chores, getting the butter out to thaw before breakfast is almost the most easily forgotten task. Don’t you worry! You could either cut some butter and wrap it in a cloth and use a rolling pin to go over it and soften it up instantly.
8. Coffee Brewing Made Easy:
Love brewed coffee but don’t have the equipment? Here’s your solution! Add the ground coffee to water, and bring it to a boil. Remove from the flame, and let it rest for a few minutes, until the ground coffee settles at the bottom. Using a ladle, gently pour the decoction into cups – and your coffee is ready to serve!
9. Avoid The Drying-Up Of A Birthday Cake:
Everyone wants a birthday cake to last for days, but once cut, it never tastes the same again. Refrigerate, and it tends to dry up. Well, try attaching slices of bread to the exposed areas of the cake using toothpicks. The bread will help retain that moisture, letting it remain soft, juicy and very fresh!
It’s always painful to keep herbs fresh, let alone extend their shelf life. Next time, chop the herbs and add them to a mixture of water and a few drops of olive oil. Pour into an ice tray and freeze. Let it melt and you will have freshly chopped herbs ready to use.
11. A Nutty Affair:
Your crispy crunchy nuts tend to go rancid at room temperature, losing their freshness and taste. Freeze shelled nuts to keep all the oils intact.
12. Smelly Hands?
It’s quite embarrassing when you cook a scrumptious meal for your boyfriend, and he reaches out to kiss those hands that made it, and yikes! The stink! Well, we have a remedy. Rub some lemon juice, baking soda or a piece of stainless steel the next time you need to get rid of that smell in a jiffy. If you are wondering how stainless steel would help, just know that the molecules in the metal bind with the smelly molecules and suck them out.
13. Clean Fruits & Veggies:
Not only is that white scab on your fresh fruits and veggies unhealthy, but it also makes them look really unappetizing. Simply scrub the dirt and pesticides with a mixture of baking soda and water.
14. Recipe Organizing:
Next time you are cooking something out of the books…oops…out of the box, just use a pant hanger to hold the recipe book that will help you avoid clutter, keep your hands free, and also keep the recipe book clean.
15. All About Knives:
Always remember that a sharp knife is a safe knife. Make sure you keep the blades facing upward when you store your knives on a block. That will make sure they remain shiny. Also, use the blunt edge of the knife to slide food off the chopping board. This will help keep the sharp edges intact.
We hope we have made life in the kitchen just a little bit better. They say, ‘Cooking is love made visible’, and it’s time you showed some love!