Who Knew? Helpful Kitchen Tips #4

Who Knew? Kitchen Tips #4 on TheShiksa.com. Stop ice crystals from forming on the surface of your ice cream by placing a sheet of plastic wrap directly onto the top of the ice cream, then seal with the lid. Voila! No more freezer burn on your favorite summer treat!

In our fourth installment of Who Knew? Helpful Kitchen Tips, here are ten simple fixes for common kitchen dilemmas. I’ve also included a few fabulous tips that readers shared on my last Who Knew? post. Do you have a useful kitchen tip? Please share in the comments below!

1. Stop ice crystals from forming on the surface of your ice cream by placing a sheet of plastic wrap directly onto the top of the ice cream, then seal with the lid. Voila! No more freezer burn on your favorite summer treat!

2. Test your baking powder by mixing a teaspoon into some hot water. If it doesn’t start to bubble and fizz right away, you’ll know it’s time for a new can.

3. Keep champagne, or any carbonated beverage, bubbly by placing the handle of a metal spoon into the bottle. This keeps the air in the top of the bottle cool, which helps to ward off loss of carbonation.

4. If you find yourself without extra long matches the next time your stove won’t light, try using an uncooked piece of spaghetti. This works great for lighting candles, too!

5. For best results, whip egg whites in a stainless steel or copper bowl. Plastic bowls retain fat and oil on the surface, while glass bowls are too slippery,  making it difficult for the whipped whites to grow in volume.

6. Always place clean paper towels or cloth towels between your non-stick pans when storing them. This will help to protect the surface from scratches.

7. A wok makes a great addition to any kitchen and can be used for more than making stir-fries. Try using one for deep-frying. A hidden benefit to this technique is that you will end up with a well-seasoned wok.

8. If your carrots and celery are looking a little limp, freshen them in a bowl of ice water with a slice of potato thrown in.

9. An ice cream scoop is a great tool for removing seeds from summer melons like cantaloupe and honeydew.

10. When cutting a frosted cake, dip your knife in hot water between each cut. This ensures a clean cut and will prevent the frosting from sticking to your knife.

Reader Tips

Here are a few of my favorite tips that were shared by readers on the last installment of Who Knew!

To keep fresh berries from spoiling, immerse them into solution of one part white vinegar to ten parts water. It keeps berries fresh for at least ten days to two weeks. ~ Judy G.

Got this tip from our daughter: Store your fresh ginger in the freezer (in a freezer bag). It doesn’t turn moldy and is much easier to grate when you take it out of the freezer and give it a minute or two to slightly defrost. ~ Muriel H.

A couple of tips: When browning ground beef, use a turkey baster to remove excess fat from the pan. I just use an empty can and then throw it away. Use a pizza cutter to cut pancakes, waffles, rolled cookie dough, etc. Works like a champ! ~ Jean von B.

Do you have a favorite kitchen tip to share? Leave it in the comments below. Your tip might be featured in my next installment of Who Knew!

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Category: Good to Know, How To, In the Kitchen, Slide Show

Comments (44)Post a Comment

  1. Craig Sonis says:

    I do this all the time!

  2. Doug Reynics says:

    Aluminum foil or plastic wrap tightly wrapped around the stem bunch on bananas adds 2-3 days to them before they over ripen.

    • Tori Avey says:

      I will definitely try this one Doug! Brown bananas are the bane of my existence… unless of course the family’s in the mood for banana bread :)

  3. Have to remember this little tidbit!

  4. If you store your Shabbat candles in the freezer they don´t drip when you light them. Freezer to table no mess!

  5. Who keeps ice cream so long it has a chance to do that?!

  6. Cliff Lubin says:

    Our old family secret is simply to eat the ice cream quickly before there´s any chance of either of those dreaded ice cream maladies happening!

  7. Eating all your ice cream at once makes it a non-issue . . .

  8. You mean no more “protective ice”?

  9. Jon L. Adams says:

    I never own ice cream long enough to wrap or freeze it. LOL

  10. Plastic wrap on pudding so a skin doesn´t form

  11. Here´s a kitchen tip that isn´t related to ice cream but to an ice cream topping. Keep your nuts in the refrigerator or freezer to keep them fresher longer.

  12. Leah Saban says:

    Thanks for that tip its very useful

  13. When serving cream for coffee, schmear a bit of butter on the underside of the spout to prevent drips.

  14. always puts a layer of plastic wrap or a waxed paper wrap tight down in/over the surface of ice cream.. keeps it away from air and moisture…NEVER put a scoop in water.. it makes ice crystals form and it will go through the WHOLE container in just a small amount of time.. ruining it all…. learned this while managing a Brusters.

  15. I did and I FORGOT! Thanks.

  16. When making chocolate ganache is also a reason to put plastic on the hot sauce so it doesn´t make a skin as it cools in the fridge.

  17. If you want to use 1/2 an avocado keep the other half with the pit and it will stay green (in the refrigerator)

  18. If you hit the garlic with the end of a heavy duty knife it peels easier.

  19. Pat Morger says:

    That´s great because I HATE it when those crystals form, and we don´t go through it fast enough for it not to!

  20. Learnt this when learning to make my own ice cream

  21. holy cow, that´s good to know! Why didn´t I ever think of that before??

  22. Cyndi Adzema says:

    lol ours doesn´t last that long to get ice crystals. :-)

  23. I do this all the time. And it definitely works.

  24. Well, I do now! Thanks for sharing this info!

  25. Love this idea! Thanks

  26. Re: avocados… The pit thing is a myth. Sry. Using citrus (lemon or lime) does work.

    • Tammy says:

      I’ve found it works pretty well. I put mine in a plastic sandwich bag with the pit still in, and make sure there’s no air in the bag (which may be the key because without the pit, there’s a sunken area), and it will keep for up to 4 days in the fridge after I use the first half. I used to have a quarter avocado every day for breakfast and this kept the rest fresh.

  27. My ice cream never stays in my freezer long enough to get either…the culprit is my husband! lol

  28. Leftover ice cream? Who has that?

  29. I do the same thing when freezing fruit.

  30. We put our ice cream in Ziploc Freezer Bags. We buy Breyers and the Ziploc Gallon Size works well. The Hefty Gallon Size are not as wide and the Ice Cream does not fit(This is Hefty with the Sliders).

  31. It´s not freezer burn, it´s “protective ice.” Go watch Albert Brook´s hilarious movie, “Mother.”

  32. Amy Rose says:

    Did you know that if you store sour cream in your fridge upside down it will never be watery??? Love these tips

  33. Once the ice cream container has been opened, simply turn it bottom up when you place it back in the freezer to prevent ice crystals forming.

  34. JD says:

    To keep fresh berries from spoiling, immerse them into solution of one part white vinegar to ten parts water. It keeps berries fresh for at least ten days to two weeks. ~ Judy G.

    Does “immerse” mean to just soak for a few seconds, a few minutes, or do I just leave them in the solution?

    • Anita silvert says:

      I swish the berries around in the solution for a minute and then drain. Don’t rinse again. You won’t taste the vinegar and it really works

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