I've compiled quite a list of tips on practically everything. Lots of cooking, household, sewing and computer tips; that has made my life a little less stressful. Hope you will find a few that you didn't already know and it's fun to say "HEY I DIDN'T KNOW THAT" So take a peek and gosh if you have a real great tip or trick you would like to share, I'd love to include it on my page.

How to cook Rice Noodlesimage Place dry noodles in a large bowl, generously cover with boiling water and let soak for 10 to 15 minutes, then drain.
Sewing up Stuffed Chicken Breasts Use unwaxed, unflavoured dental floss to sew up stuffed chicken breasts or other stuffed meats. Also dental floss will work well to slice cakes into layers and to cut cinnamon buns, etc
Storing Garlic process your garlic, add to clean jar, top with olive oil. It can keep for 6 months in the fridge.
Storing Flour (no more bugs) If your worried about bugs in your flour or any dry goods, just put whole bay leaves inside, I also lay a few in my cupboard, and have never had bugs.
Storing Unused Gingerroot For short-term storage, keep it wrapped in the refrigerator. For long storage, freeze the unpeeled gingerroot; cut off what you need while it's frozen.
Storing Vegetables To store entire head of washed, drained  iceberg lettuce, green onions  or green peppers that have been cut,  wrap in paper towel then place in storage bag.  Your veggys will last longer. 
Soften Cabbage Leaves for Cabbage Rolls Put cabbage head in the freezer for about 2 days, Remove from freezer, place cabbage in a colander in the sink and allow to defrost overnight. Core cabbage and your leaves will be limp.
Food Processor clean-up tip Covering food processor bowl with plastic wrap before placing on the lid, saves cleaning up the lid.
Tomato Paste tips For less waste, open both ends of the can and push out. As many recipes call for such a small amount of tomato paste, freeze leftover paste on a cookie sheet by tablespoon then store in freezer bag.
Whiter & fluffier rice Add 1 tsp lemon juice to 1 quart of cooking water.
Healthy French Fries Tastier frozen french fries done in the oven, place fries in a bowl with a small amount of oil (about one tbsp), toss to coat then lay on a cookie sheet and bake in preheated 450F for  20-25 minutes, turning potatoes once during baking.
Separating Coffee Filters To separate coffee filters without loosing its shape, pinch in the center of the filter and pull out. Works for me!
Cooking Hamburgers When cooking hamburgers, indoors or on the BBQ, poke a hole in the center. This will stop the hamburger from rising in the center and your burger will be more evenly cooked; not burnt on the edge and only medium in the middle. The hole will close while cooking. See myPerfect Hamburgers for more ideas.
No Whipping Cream Light cream can be whipped by adding egg white.
Easy Peeled Garlic If you struggle every time you need a little garlic, you'll be amazed to see the skin slip off when you give it a good whack with the side of a chef's knife.
Easy Peeling Kiwi To peel kiwi, I cut them in half and slide a small spoon between the peel and the fruit.
Easy Peeled Peaches Placing them into boiling water for 30 seconds. Remove and place them into ice water to stop the cooking. Their skins will slip off. Sprinkle with lemon juice to retain color.
Stop Potatoes from budding To keep potatoes from budding, place an apple in the bag with the potatoes.
To Measure Molasses or honey Coat your measuring cup or spoon with a bit of oil and your molasses or honey will slide out easily, no need to scrape.
Grapes To enjoy on a hot summer day, pop your grapes in the freezer. They are delicious frozen.
Substitute shortening If your recipe call for shortening no need to run to the store; you can use oil, just reduce by 1/3.
Checking dried beans Put dried beans in a bowl of cold water, and discard any that float to the surface, since this is an indication of insect or mold damage.
Topping for fresh berries Melted vanilla ice cream combined with your favorite liqueur makes a fabulous sauce for fresh berries.
Oatmeal  cookies Your oatmeal cookies or quick breads will be even tastier if you bake the oats beforehand. Place them in a pre-heated 300F [150C] oven for 10-12 minutes before adding to your dough
How to Melt Chocolate Easily This hint I didn't create, but such a wonderful hint that I asked Shawn if I could include it on my list and she graciously said OK, she has many great hints and recipes, so be sure to drop by her site, which I have listed under my favorite site section for recipes.

Melting chocolate, chips or chopped chocolate can be very easy. Place them in a zip loc bag and put them in very hot water. Then take the bag out and knead it every 5 minutes until the chips or chocolate is melted. You can also place the bag (leave it open a tiny bit) in the microwave for 30 seconds, knead the chocolate and continue placing it in the microwave on 10 second intervals until melted. Once melted, knead the bag and then cut a small hole in the edge.

Cloudy Ice Tea Add just a small dash of boiling water.
Using Shrimp Shells When you peel shrimp save shells. Boil in water about 20 minutes. Strain and freeze  for use as fish stock.
Egg stuck to carton Wetting the carton should free the egg.
Substitute for buttermilk
  • 3/4 cup [175 mL] yogurt plus 1/4 cup [50 mL] whole milk.
  • 2 tsp [10 mL] vinegar or lemon juice to each 1/2 cup [125 mL] of milk
  • Turkey Tips
  • To thaw in refrigerator, allow 5 hours per pound.
  • Count on one pound per person. A 15 pound turkey will serve 8-10 with enough for leftovers.
  • Other quick tricks
  • Dish too salty - add a peeled potato.
  • Wrap celery in aluminum foil and store in fridge, it will stay crisp for weeks.
  • Test baking power or soda by adding tsp. of water. If fizzes its good.
  • Frosting that 2 layer cake Hate it when you try to frost your cake and it slides off to one side. I found sticking a few broken pieces of spaghetti through the top holds it firmly together.
    Foil wrappers from butter or margarine Don't through them away, store in a freeze lock bag, pop in the freezer and the next time you need to grease that pan, grab that sucker from the freezer bag.
    Perfect Ice cubes I found if you use hot water to fill your ice cube tray you'll get clear ice cubes.
    Perfect Beaten Egg Whites For perfect beaten egg whites, always use a stainless steel bowl and do not tap beater on bowl of egg whites.  The jarring of beater will cause the whites to lose a great deal of their fluffiness.  The beater should be tapped on the hand to clean off the whites.
    No more stuck Meat Loaf Meat loaf will not stick to its pan if you place a strip of bacon at the bottom of the pan before placing your meat loaf in it.

    Reusable bags Use inside bags from cereal to pound chicken or your pork tenderloin. Much studier than plastic wrap
    Store bought Rotisserie Chicken drippings Freeze drippings and add to the next recipe calling for chicken broth. Adds tons of flavor.
    Uses for kitchenware, etc 
  • To keep your cupboard shelf clean., reuse plastic lids from coffee cans, pringles potato chips, etc. to place under oil containers, pepper mills, jams, honey, etc.
  • No cheesecloth, use a coffee filter to strain something.
  • Store dry dog food in a large step-on wastebasket.
  • Use a squeeze-type plastic ketchup or detergent bottle for cooking oil and you'll have better control over the amount of oil you use for frying and greasing the BBQ, etc.
    Freezing leftover casseroles Line a casserole dish with foil before filling it, seal tightly and freeze. When frozen remove from dish, and now you can use your dish. When ready to bake, slip food from foil, place in the same casserole and bake.
    Freezing Roasted Red Peppers Wash, dry, remove seeds and cut red peppers in half. Roast on your outdoor grill or broil in your oven. Grill or broil, skin side only until blackened and blisters. Immediately put them in a large casserole and cover tightly with foil or lid. After 20 minutes peel the skin off, freeze on a cookie sheet then store in freezer bags. Enjoy all winter.
    Ice Cube Tray Uses Stop by your dollar store and purchase a few plastic ice cube trays. Great for freezing your home-made pesto, lemon juice, tomato paste, leftover beef or chicken broth. When frozen remove and transfer to freezer container or ziploc bag.
    Freeze bananas If you often bake banana bread/muffins, you can freeze your over-ripe bananas whole in the skins, or peel them and freeze them in the quantities needed for your recipe.

    Repair small holes in Window Screens Dab on three or more coats of clear nail polish.
    Potted Plant tip Use a coffee filter in the bottom of your plant pot before adding soil. This will allow drainage without loosing the soil.
    Wine cork too large to fit back in bottle Soak it several minutes in boiling water.
    Residue Remover To remove price tag residue on pots, pans and other metal or plastic items, rub with a dab of peanut butter.
    Dusting Tip Save your old pairs of woolen or cotton socks to use as dusters. Simply slip them over your hands and go. When the get dirty, simply toss them in the laundry. This tip is one of many you will find at
    Cleaning or Unclogging Drain A tip you may have forgotten. To unclog a drain or keep it fresh smelling add one cup of baking soda and one cup of vinegar.
    Grass Stains To remove grass stains, treat stained area with a toothpaste that claims it will whiten your teeth. Allow to set for a few minutes before washing.
    Icy Steps For icy door steps in freezing temperatures: get warm water and put Dawn dishwashing liquid in it. Pour it all over the steps. They won't refreeze.
    Cleaning Artifical Flowers To clean artificial flowers, pour some salt into a paper bag and add the flowers. Shake vigorously as the salt will absorb all the dust and dirt and leave your artificial flowers looking like new! Works like a charm!
    Cleaning the BBQ Grill This wonderful hint comes from Bob Allison's Ask you neighbor This cleanup trick works while you sleep! Lay a barbecue grill rack on the lawn overnight-the dew will combine with the enzymes in the grass to loosen any burned-on grease. Try it with messy oven racks too!
    Reuse the old mascara brushing This great idea comes from Carojean. Clean the old used mascara brush. It is great for cleaning small places.
    Candle ideas
  • Instead of whittling a candle at the base to make it fit in the candle holder, I hold the end in a cup of very hot water for a few minutes to soften the wax then gently and firmly press it into the holder.
  • If your candle holder is too large wrap a bit of plastic wrap around the base of the candle and wedge into your holder.
  • To make new candles dripless, soak in a strong saltwater solution for a few hours, then dry well.
  • Cleaning Copper Pour lemon juice on copper and sprinkle with salt. Then wipe off instantly. The salt works as an abrasive.
    Cleaning Silverware Line sink with aluminum foil, put in silverware, sprinkle with baking soda and pour boiling water over. Rinse and dry.
    Stop that mixing bowl or board from sliding Purchase a small roll of the rubber shelf liner we see everywhere these days and cut a piece to put under your wooden board or mixing bowl. Now you've got both your hands free to mix that batter or roll that dough.
    Stop your chair pads from sliding Another great tip is cut a small square of rubber shelf liner and place it under your chair pads, they will NOT slide... and then you don't have to keep sewing the ties back onto them.
    Opening Tightly Sealed Jars Wear a rubber glove to give you a firm hold or grip with a rubber band around jar lid.
    Re freshen the old thermos bottle Fill with warm water, add a tsp [5 mL] of baking soda. Leave overnight. Oh the wonders of baking soda.
    Other uses for sandpaper
  • Carefully rub lightly with sandpaper should remove knots on sheets and sweaters.
  • Rub very fine sandpaper on suede shoes to remove stubborn scuff marks.
  • Vinegar magic
  • Cut excess suds when hand-washing clothes by adding a splash of vinegar to the rinse. Rinse again in plan water.
  • To make cut flowers bloom longer, add 2 tbsp. of vinegar plus 3 tbsp. of sugar to each quart of warm water.
  • Clean away unsightly film in bottles, jugs and vases by pouring in a bit of vinegar and shaking vigorously. For tougher stains, add 1 or 2 tbsp. of raw rice to 1/4 cup of vinegar and shake.
  • Glue too thick; add a few drops of vinegar and shake.
  • Hot Liquid Place a spoon in a glass, backside facing up before pouring in hot liquid and the glass shouldn't break.
    Remove small scratches from all kinds of furniture There are many used for pecans, walnuts and peanuts. The meat from these nuts are wonderful for removing scratches. Just remove the meat from its shell and break the nut in two. With the broken side of the nut meat, just rub the scratch gently. The oil from the nut will eliminate any discoloration and your furniture will look like new.

    Centerpiece ideas Place an array of different size candles on a circular mirror and you can also add little flower vases for a few small flowers.
    Hospitality Finger Bowls When serving foods that are to be eaten with the fingers such as spare ribs or shellfish, provide each guest with a finger bowl of water. To the water, add a few slices of lemon and maybe scatter some rose petals.
    Sewing tricks
  • To give a bargain-basement find a more expensive look, change buttons for good quality ones.
  • Before you cut your fabric, be sure it is on-grain. To get the straight grain, clip the selvage at the end and tear across the fabric. If it won't tear, pull a thread and cut along this line. Remember that the proper preparation of the fabric is vital in sewing.
  • Glue a small piece of foam rubber or rubber underpad to the bottom of your sewing machine foot petal to prevent it from creeping across the floor.
  • When letting down the hem on a child's dress, cover original fold line with a strip of pretty ribbon. Add similar strip to collar edge or each sleeve to tie it all together.
  • To gather a long edge, lay a thin string or cord in seam allowance along edge, then zig zag stitch over it, ensuring not to catch the string. Pull fabric along string to gather easily.
  • Add strips of reflective fabric to children's snowsuits, rainwear and adult's activewear, so wearer stays visible to oncoming traffic on dull days or dark nights.
    Locked in someones Frame While you are surfing the net you get stuck in someones site, just click on "Home" on your browser menu and you are free of the frames.
    Closing a Window You can close any program or browser window by double clicking on the icon in the top left corner, this is very helpful when you can't click on the X because it's off the screen.
    Scroll Wheel Mouse Trick  If you have a mouse with a scroll wheel, hold down the Ctrl key and at the same time, by scrolling up or down with the little scroll wheel, you can alter the size of the text.
    Windows shortcut tip CTRL+F A quick way to find what you are looking for on a page that has an enormous amount of text. By holding down the CTRL key and pressing the F a window will appear. Type in the word that you are searching for and it will highlight on the page.
    Minimize of Maximize a Window Double click on the top bar of a window and it will minimize or maximize.
    Moving a Window You can move any program or browser window by holding left mouse on the blue line at the top, you now can move it up or down, left or right.
    Opening links in a new browser window: Sometimes, you want to see what's behind the link, but you don't want to lose your place. That's when you might want to show the link in a new window. Instead of clicking the link, click it with your RIGHT mouse button, and then select Open in New Window. That way, you see what's behind the link but your don't lose your place in your internet site.
    Browser Back Button When you are browsing and want to go back to a previous page, right click your mouse on your browser Back button and you will get a dropdown menu of your previously visited pages. Pick one.
    Space Savers When you crash Windows, your whole Undo log is left in the Windows\Temp folder. If you don't keep a check on this, you can soon end up with a huge amount of stuff clogging up your hard drive and sometimes confusing PSP as well. Go to c:\Windows\Temp and delete all the files starting with Und, and anything else that's left over there from other software crashes. Tip from Hoods.
  • When you visit a graphic site remember that you can also use the textured tiles, etc. as your desktop wallpaper. Note in the wallpaper section of your desktop properties you can only save one image per browser, such as Netscape and I.E., so each time you select a wallpaper it will override your previous selection. Also, you can change the display to read tile,for coverage of your total screen; or center for a picture effect and have icons around the edges.

  • Move your mouse to the image you like, right-click on the image, left click "set as wallpaper". Now place your browser in the taskbar area to view your new background. I also use this technique to see if I want to save it for my web pages.

  • Check out my favorite site page for some great graphic sites.
  • How to print or save recipes Should you wish to print just one recipe, or just keep it in your own recipe folder it is very easy to do in Windows.

  • To just print a section of a page it may be possible that all you need to do is place your mouse cursor at the beginning of the recipe, holding the left mouse button down drag the cursor over the recipe,right click your mouse, choose PRINT then before you print change the print range of your printer to read selection

    Another way to print or copy a recipe is to use the copy/paste method

  • First place your mouse cursor at the beginning of the recipe, holding the left mouse button down drag the cursor over the recipe, Right click you mouse, select copy.

  • Now you can paste this recipe into almost any document you choose. For example:open Notepad, located under your Start Button/Program/Accessories. Move your mouse cursor to where you want it pasted, left click. Then right click, select paste.

  • To print from Notepad, click on File in the Notepad toolbar and select Print; or it can be modified or edited and saved in your recipe folder.
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