top of page. picture of Rob and Bob with information about the radio show.


Bob's Photograph. Photo by: S. Tusa (Det. Free Press). Click here to read the Free Press article. A photo of Rob Allison next to Bob.

HELPFUL HOUSEHOLD HINTS



             I have received so many e-mails asking how to remove wax from carpet and furniture that I knew we needed to start this page off with these answers.
         I will be posting more hints as time permits. But don't forget you can e-mail your questions to us (see our home page) and we'll ask the "neighbors" for their help on the air. You must let us know who you are and where you're writing from. We are broadcasting the program on the internet, so YOU CAN LISTEN TO THE PROGRAM for an answer to your question, by going to our home page and clicking on the listen link.
         We broadcast the show live between 9:00 to 11:00 AM (Eastern Time Zone) Monday thru Friday so bookmark the site and keep checking back.
Thanks, Rob Jr.
 


| Listen Live | Last 10 Shows | Chat Area |



THE COOKBOOK SALE WILL BE CONTINUED !!

Get all 7 remaining cookbooks for just $28.00 plus $3 dollars shipping.

Click here for more info.


Try the search engine feature located at the bottom of our HOME page.






REMOVE WAX FROM CARPETING

Place a paper towel over the stain and draw the wax up into it by placing a warm iron over the paper towel (this is called "capillary action"); repeat if necessary. Sponge the stained area with 1 c. isopropyl alcohol and 2-3 c. water if the stain remains. Sponge from the outside to the inside of the stain. Be very sure not to get the area too wet or you can bring up a stain from the padding.

REMOVE CANDLE WAX FROM FURNITURE

Turn stained furniture upside down. Put a piece of cotton cloth (T-shirt) over the wax stain. Using a hot chrome or metal finish curling iron, heat wax and let it melt into the cloth. This may take several applications to fully remove the wax.

REMOVE CANDLE WAX ON MATERIAL

Remove the excess the best you can. This is best done by putting an ice cube on the wax to harden it, then peeling or scraping off the excess wax. Then place an absorbent piece of paper underneath, such as a brown paper bag. Put a white paper towel on top. Place a warm (not hot) iron on top over the paper towel and it should draw the wax up to the towel.

Nov. '97



REMOVE CANDLE WAX FROM CANDLE HOLDERS

Put candle holders in the freezer til wax is frozen. Chip the wax off. Or, put holders under very hot water and wipe wax off.

Feb. 2000


HELEN'S MAGIC POTION FOR WHITE CLOTHES

This is for use with white cotton, nylon and polyester only.
1/4 c. liquid detergent
1/4 c. electric dishwasher detergent
1/4 c. bleach OR ammonia BUT NOT BOTH
1/2 - 1 bucket warm water

Soak until stain disappears and launder as usual.
Note: DO NOT use chlorinated bleach.

PERSPIRATION STAINS

2 T. cream of tartar per gallon of water. Soak until stain disappears then launder as usual.

Jan. '99



SALT STAINS ON SHOES

Apply white vinegar to shoes with a rag and wipe off salt stains. This is supposed to de-activate the salt as well.

Feb. '99


TO CLEAN MICROWAVE OVEN AND REMOVE ODORS

Place a bowl of vinegar in the microwave and run on HIGH til it comes to a boil. Wipe the interior clean with a rag dipped in the vinegar.

Feb.'99


PREVENTING DRAWERS FROM STICKING

Make sure the wood is very dry and sanded well. Shellac them and then rub with paraffin wax in order to lubricate them so they slide easily. Do this to all surfaces of the drawers.

July 1994


REMOVING HAIR SPRAY FROM WALLS

Put a few drops of shampoo and warm water on a sponge or cloth to wipe down the wall. Rinse with clear warm water to remove any residue.

May 1995


TO CLEAN COFFEE MAKERS

Drop an EFFER-DENT denture cleaning tablet in a 10 cup coffee maker and add hot water it instead of cold. Brew as usual then rinse.

Feb. '99


MAKE A YARN BOTTLE

Heat the black "ring" portion of a 2 liter plastic soda pop bottle with a hair dryer and remove the ring. Cut the bottom part of the clear plastic container with a knife. Insert the skein of yarn inside the bottle and run the yarn through the top opening. Slip the ring back on the bottom end of the bottle. If the ring is too loose, tape it to the clear part of the bottle.

Feb. '99


FLOODED BASEMENTS

Disinfect your walls and floors with Lysol or a solution of 1/2 c. chlorine to 1 gal. water. Discard fruits, vegetables or food that has come in contact with the water. Wash jars or cans of food with soap and hot water using a brush, then immerse in chlorinated water. (3 drops of bleach to 1 gal. water) for at least 15 minutes. Clothing, carpets, toys and upholstered furniture cannot be disinfected, you should discard them. Beware of electrocution. Don't go down in the water until the electricity has been cut off.

Sept. '98


REMOVE MILDEW

Mix equal parts of non-chlorine Clorox II Lemon Fresh bleach and Palmolive dish soap. Make a paste and apply it to the mildew. You can use a toothbrush to really work it in. This may take a few applications. When mildew brushes off; launder.

ODOR FROM NEW CARPET

Turn the heat up to full blast for several hours then turn heat back down. Open all windows and air out the dwelling.

IF INSTANT PUDDING BREAKS DOWN AFTER STORING

Enzymes from saliva will break down the pudding after eating. To prevent this, do not eat from the original bowl then store. Serve portions to be eaten in separate bowls.

FRESH STRAWBERRIES INSTEAD OF FROZEN

Remember to crush the strawberries before measuring them. This will equalize the proportions for measuring.

YEAST TEST

Dissolve 1 t. of granulated sugar into 1/2 c. warm water (110 -115 ). Sprinkle 1 packet of yeast slowly over the surface of the water. Stir the yeast mixture and let stand for 10 minutes. If the yeast has multiplied to the 1 c. mark and has a rounded crown, the yeast is still active and fresh and you may use it. Remember to deduct the 1/2 c. of liquid from the total amount of liquid used in your recipe.

Sep. '98


PREVENTING RASH FROM WRIST WATCH

Brush back of watch with clear nail polish. When it wears off repeat.

Sep. '98


PREVENT STAINS ON TIES

Scotch Guard ties when they're new.

TO GET RID OF CLOVER MITES

Put a towel or rag soaked in Roman Cleanser bleach on the window sill. Make sure your sill is constructed of a material that can take the bleach safely such as marble.

Sep. '98


TO KEEP COFFEE GROUNDS FROM THE COFFEE POT

1.) Rinse the basket of the coffee maker with water, insert the coffee filter and rinse again. The filter won't collapse.
2.) Cut a strip from a plastic milk carton just wide enough to almost reach the top of the filter and long enough to fit snugly inside the basket. Put the filter in the basket and insert strip to hold in place.

Sep. '98


CHARLIE SANDERS TIPS FOR B-B-Q RIBS (from the Detroit Lions)

ONLY USE A CHARCOAL GRILL ! (Charlie thinks the taste is far superior to gas grills).Cut off the rib tips (back of the ribs). Turn and spray ribs every 3 to 5 minutes using a marinade of 1 part vinegar and 3 parts water. Cook ribs at least 1 hour. To order Charlie's B-B-Q sauce call (313) 861-9220 or fax him at (313) 862-5875.

June '98



LESS TOXIC ENVIRONMENTAL ALTERNATIVES

AIR FRESHENERS/DEODORIZERS

1.)Leave open boxes of baking soda in refrigerators, closets and bathrooms.
2.)Saturate a cotton ball with pure vanilla; place on a saucer in refrigerator or car.
3.)Set out white vinegar in open dishes to destroy odors.
4.)Set out potpourri in open dishes.
5.)Burn scented candles.

CLEANERS

1.)Mix vinegar with salt and water for a good surface cleaner
2.)Dissolve baking soda in water for a general cleaner.
3.)For washing dishes by hand, use 1/2 c. baking soda with a mild dish washing liquid to help cut grease and food.
4.)For automatic dishwashers choose a detergent with the lowest phosphate content listed on the package.
5.)For a good glass cleaner combine a quart of water with 1/4 to 1/2 c. of white vinegar, 1 to 2 T. of lemon juice or 1 to 2 T. rubbing alcohol.

MILDEW CLEANERS

1.)Scrub mildew spots with baking soda or Borax; or sponge with white vinegar.
2.)Scrub area with a paste of lemon juice or white vinegar and salt.
3.)To clean mildew from a shower curtain: machine wash with 1/2 c. soap and 1/2 c. baking soda adding 1c. of white vinegar to the rinse cycle.

UPHOLSTERY RUG & CARPET CLEANERS

1.)Use a non-aerosol soap based cleaner.
2.)Clean spills immediately with club soda.
3.)To clean red wine stains, rub a thick layer of salt on the spill then sponge up after the spill has been absorbed.

SCOURING POWDERS

1.)Use baking soda or salt.
2.)Use a non-chlorinated commercial scouring powder.

TOILET BOWL CLEANERS

1.)Scrub with a solution of 1/2 c. Borax in a gallon of water for cleaning and disinfecting.
2.)Clean frequently with a solution of baking soda and water. Sprinkle baking soda around the rim and scrub with a toilet brush as needed.

DRAIN OPENERS

1.)To unclog a drain, pour 1/4 c. of baking soda down the drain followed by 1/2 c. of white vinegar. Let sit for a few minutes then pour a kettle of boiling water down the drain to flush.
2.)Pour 1/4 c. salt down the drain, followed by boiling water, to keep drains unclogged.
3.)Pouring boiling water down the drain once a week can keep it from getting blocked.
4.)To prevent clogged drains, always use a drain strainer. Use a mechanical snake or plunger to unclog a drain.

Aug. '98


ALTERNATIVES FOR HOUSEHOLD CLEANING SOLUTIONS

The improper disposal of household chemicals can be hazardous to people and their environment. While one home's pollution may be small, the effect of many can be significant. Each month an average community of 158,000 people discards 6 tons of toilet bowl cleaner, 22 tons of liquid household cleaner and 5.5 tons of motor oil. Landfills, storm drains and sewage treatment plants are not designed to treat chemical wastes. Without special treatment, the chemicals stay in the environment and move into recreational and drinking water supplies. Everyone must help to solve this problem. Here's some safer and less hazardous alternatives to chemicals. Call (313) 923-2240 for the latest information.

HOUSEHOLD CHEMICALS
Furniture:

Polish:
Equal parts mineral oil and lemon oil or:
Equal parts mineral oil and Murphy's Oil Soap.
Wood:
2 T. olive oil, 1 T. white vinegar in 1 qt. warm water. Spray, then dry with soft cloth.
Upholstered:
6 T. soap flakes, 1 pt. boiling water, 2 T. borax.
Leather:
Murphy's Oil Soap.
Floors:
Cleaner:
1/4 c. white vinegar, 1/4 c. washing soda (sodium carbonate) in 1 gal. warm water.
Painted Wood:
1 T. washing soda in 1 gal. warm water.
Vinyl, Natural Wood:
Murphy's Oil Soap.
Wax Remover:
3 T. washing soda in 1 qt. warm water.
All Purpose Cleaner:
Baking soda and water for ovens, cutting boards, coffee stains, toilets, basin, tub and tile.
Water mixed with salt or borax for Formica.
Baking soda and vinegar for crusted food in pans.
Oven Cleaner:
Put salt on spills while warm.
Loosen soil with 1/4 c. ammonia left overnight.
Deodorizer:
Baking soda or vinegar in open dish.
Air out room.
Fresh flowers or herbs.
Mix 2 c. of corn meal and 1 box of borax and sprinkle on carpet, leave 15 minutes, then vacuum.
Disinfectant:
Borax and water solution, then keep area aired out and dry.
1 T. bleach in 1 gal. of warm water (wipe on a clean surface and let air dry).
Stain Removal:
For rust or hard water deposits: vinegar or lemon juice.
For copper pots: lemon halves dipped in salt (or rub with vinegar).
For coffee cups: baking soda.
For general use: corn meal and water mixed into paste.
Personal Care Products:
Avoid aerosols, use pump sprays.

GARAGE/BASEMENT
Paint, Paint Remover:
Use water based latex paints.
Use sandpaper and sander as paint remover.
Pesticides:
Boric acid for cockroaches, traps for rats and mice (Pesticides will not be effective if the pests' shelter, food and water are not removed).
Wood Preservatives:
Purchase pre-treated wood.

LAUNDRY
Detergent:

Soap, borax or washing soda or use less detergent.
Softener:
1/4 c. vinegar in wash cycle.
Dry Cleaner Fluid/Spot Remover:
Soap, cornstarch or vinegar.
Starch;
1 T. cornstarch to 1 pt. water.
Bleach:
Use powdered rather than liquid bleach.

OTHER ALTERNATIVES:
Wipe up spills with water or club soda.

To be published in a future Menu Minder


AUTOMATIC GARAGE DOOR OPENER

If you're leaving home for a period of time, unplug your garage door opener and lock the door. Thieves may patrol the area with an opener of their own testing to see who's door opens. Another good idea is to reset the "factory" code on your opener to a personal one.

Aug. '98


FOR A RICHER CHICKEN STOCK

Add the chicken feet! Scrape the skin off the feet, cut off the toes and rinse. Make the broth or stock as you normally would. The feet will add much more flavor.

July '98


RAW EGG IN AN UNBAKED RECIPE (Emeril)

Coddle the egg: Put whole egg on a spoon and dip it into boiling water for 40 seconds. Shock the egg in cold water to stop the cooking process.

June '98



FOOD SAFETY QUESTIONS

Call the Oakland County Cooperative Extension Food Hotline at 1-248-858-0904.

June '98



REMOVE TARNISH FROM SILVERWARE

1.) Line a pan with a sheet of aluminum foil or use an aluminum pan. Stir 3 T. baking soda or Comet to each quart of water used. Lay silver in pan making sure it touches foil.
2.) Put a sheet of aluminum foil in a non-metallic pan. Add 1 t. salt and 1 t. baking soda per quart of water used and bring to a boil. Lay silver in pan touching foil until tarnish is gone.
3.) If you're out of silver polish don't despair, water in which potatoes have been cooked will remove tarnish from silverware. Just soak the pieces for an hour and the tarnish will disappear. Wash the pieces in suds, rinse well and dry.
4.) Put silver in plastic dishpan and set in your sink. Add Dermassage and 1/2 c. Roman Cleanser to boiling water. Let soak; stir occasionally.

Note: These methods remove all tarnish. If you want the patina in the grooves of the pattern to remain - DON'T USE THIS METHOD!!

May '98


APPLESAUCE AS SUBSTITUTE FOR OIL

You may substitute up to 50% applesauce or fruit puree in place of oil when you bake to reduce fat content, i.e.: 1 c. oil called for in recipe, use 1/2 c. applesauce. If you have any questions call Motts: 1-800-426-4891.

June '98



PEELING HARD BOILED EGGS

Start eggs in cold water with 1/2 t. salt and 1 T. oil. Bring to full boil. Now you have two choices: You can reduce the heat and simmer the eggs for 12 minutes or cover the pan, turn off the heat, and wait 15 to 20 minutes. Put eggs in cold water to stop cooking process. Crack the shells and run them under cold water again. The eggs should peel easily. Hard-cooked eggs will keep in the refrigerator four to five days if left unpeeled.

PEELING HARD BOILED EGGS (From Hamilton Egg Co.)

Fresh eggs may be hard to peel. Use eggs stored 7-10 days. To help make peeling easier, cool eggs immediately in cold water after cooking. To remove the shell, crackle eggs by tapping gently all over. Roll the eggs between your fingers to loosen the shell, then peel starting at the large end. Hold the eggs under running cold water or dip them in a bowl of cold water and ease off the shell.

May '98


MUSTY SMELLING BOOKS

Put the book in a brown paper bag with baking soda and let sit for approximately one week.

May '98


TO CLEAN WHITE SHOES

Rub the shoes with a cloth dipped in ammonia.

ARTHRITIS CURE (Paul Harvey)

Soak white raisins (yellow Dole plump up best) in gin for seven days then pour off gin. Eat nine raisins per day. You can grind the raisins and take one heaping teaspoonful per day.

ARTHRITIS HELP

1 T. honey
1 T. apple juice
8 oz. water

Combine and drink 2-3 times daily.

May '97


RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS SOAK (By Bernadine)

To help alleviate the pain associated with rheumatoid arthritis, run a hot bath and dissolve 2 packets of Johnson's Foot Soak and 1/2 - 1/3 cup of rubbing alcohol in the water. Get in and soak. After getting out of the tub, use a good moisturizer as the alcohol will tend to dry your skin out.

July '97


JOGGING IN A JUG (homemade)

Mix 1 part apple cider vinegar to 4 parts purple grape juice and 4 parts apple juice. Mix together well. Keep in the refrigerator. Take 2 oz. every morning after breakfast to help lower your cholesterol level.

To purchase JOGGING IN A JUG: Nutri Foods on Main Street in Royal Oak Michigan (248) 541-6820. They will ship it to you.

June '97


FOR CLEANING COPPER PAN

1. Clean pan with Zud and rinse. Wipe dry right away.
2. Or rub the pan with a cloth dipped in ketchup.

TO TAKE THE HEAT OUT OF RED ONIONS

Slice the red onion. Put slices into a bowl of cold water and soak for 10 minutes.

REMOVING SPAGHETTI SAUCE FROM CLOTHING

Rub regular Dawn Dish washing Detergent into the spaghetti stain; put some also into lukewarm water and stir. Soak clothing overnight. Repeat if necessary. DO NOT ever put clothing in dryer if it has a stain or you will set the stain. NOTE: You can use Simple Green in the same manner or try adding 1/4 c. Simple Green to your washing machine load and if there are any stains you may have missed, the Simple Green will help remove them.

March '97



TO REMOVE ODOR FROM PLASTIC CONTAINERS

Put tomato juice on a sponge and wipe it around. Also can be used to remove odors form inside of refrigerators and dogs. Wash containers and lids with soap and water, dry well and put lid and bowl separately into freezer for a couple of days.

Dec. '96



REMOVING RED WINE STAIN

Saturate a cloth or sponge with hydrogen peroxide and blot the stain. If the stain is in carpet do not saturate the actual carpet just use a cloth or sponge that has hydrogen peroxide applied to it.

May '96



SHINE A KITCHEN FLOOR WITHOUT WAXING

A cup of vinegar poured into your mop water will make your kitchen floor gleam. On no-wax floors that have dulled it brings out the shine. On waxed floors it helps cut through years of wax buildup, leaving the surface bright.

NOTE: A neighbor sent this comment to us regarding the above method...
"I am a Remodeling contractor in Bolingbrook, IL and I was just looking at your hints. The one about vinegar on the floor is incorrect. A newer study by tile manufactures has shown that using vinegar on floors is the worst thing to use. This came out about a year ago in a newsletter from Century Tile. Just thought you may like to know, so if anyone reads your page and kills their floor, they won't say you advised it." Here is a summary of that article.

"Do you remember when all the flooring people were saying to wash your new floors with vinegar? Well, they discovered that it wasn't a real good idea, though it was great for water spotting due to hard water. Vinegar is an acid and will harm most natural stones and it can etch or discolor grout, it is known to soften most vinyl and wood floors on the market today. When you have, a new floor installed or if you're doing it yourself, be sure to find out what the manufacturer recommends cleaning their product with and use it. It may cost more to use the special cleaning product but your floor will last longer and look a lot nicer. "
Jan Peterson,CR


Thanks Jan!

March '96



REMOVING PERSPIRATION STAINS

Make a solution of water, white vinegar and detergent or use vinegar alone and apply to the stain; launder as usual.

June '95



CONVERTING REGULAR COOKING TO CROCKERY COOKING

Original recipe calls for 15-30 minutes of cooking time: cook on low 4-8 hours or 1 1/2 - 2 1/2 hours on high. For 30-60 minutes of cooking time; cook on low 6-8 hours or 3-4 hours on high. For 1-3 hours of cooking time: cook on low 8-16 hours or 4-6 hours on high.

April '95



CAST IRON PAN SEASONING AND CARE

1.) Wash in warm sudsy, water; dry thoroughly.
2.) Coat the whole utensil in Planters peanut oil; place in A 300 degree oven for 1 hour.
3.) Remove from oven and wipe off oil with a paper towel.
4.) Before cooking, pre-heat utensil for 90 seconds over medium heat.
5.) Cleaning and storage: Your cast iron will turn black after repeated use providing a durable coating that prevents sticking. Just rinse in hot water (not the dishwasher). Harsh detergents will remove the seasoning. Dry and store in a warm dry place, do not stack.
6.) If you notice rust, discolored food, blackened dish towel or metallic taste, re-season, using the steps above.

October '98



GENERAL CARE OF CAST IRON PANS

1.) Clean cast iron cookware with only hot water and a good stiff brush. Even well seasoned pieces will need some attention every now and again, so wash with a mild detergent, rinse and dry thoroughly. Never scour or use a dishwasher. (You may use a plastic bun to remove stubborn food particles).
2.) Cook food with little water content the first few times. Avoid cooking acidic foods such as tomatoes, unless combined with other foods. Uncover hot food as you remove from the heat, because steam may remove the protective coating.
3.) Rust, a metallic taste or discolored foods are signs of improper or inadequate seasoning. If this occurs, wash thoroughly and re-season.
4.) Since cast iron heats evenly, it is not necessary to use extremely high cooking temperatures. Best results are obtained with medium to medium-high temperature settings. Do not overheat or leave empty utensil on burner. Never place utensil on an already heated burner; rather, allow the utensil to heat as the burner does.
5.) Always store cast iron utensils with tops or lids off so moisture won't collect inside. Store in a warm, dry place. A paper towel placed inside the utensil will absorb any moisture and prevent rust.
6.) For best results, warm cast iron utensils in the oven while preparing ingredients. This will ensure that food cooks evenly without sticking.

That black finish that good cooks covet will develop over time, generating years of good cooking and creating a new heirloom for future generations.

August '99



NUTRITION AND FOOD SAFETY HOTLINE PHONE NUMBER

U.S.D.A.'s meat and poultry hot line: 1-800-535-4555. 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. E/T weekdays

December '94



WEIGHTS, MEASUREMENTS AND CONVERSIONS

Please note that MANY of the following equivalents are rounded off, and are NOT exact.

CONVERSION CHART FOR CUP MEASUREMENTS

8 oz. = 1 cup
Picnic size = 1 1/4 cups
#300 can = 1 3/4 cups
#1 tall can = 2 cups
#303 can = 2 cups
#2 can (20 oz. can) = 2 1/2 cups
#2 1/2 can = 3 1/2 cups
#3 can = 4 cups
#10 can = 12-13 cups

June '93


MILLILITER CONVERSIONS

1/8 t. = .5 ml
1/4 t. = 1.5 ml.
1/2 t. = 3 ml.
3/4 t. = 4 ml.
1 t. = 5 ml.
1 T. = 15 ml.
1/4 c. = 60 ml.
1/3 c. = 85 ml.
1/2 c. = 125 ml.
2/3 c. = 170 ml.
3/4 c. = 180 ml.
1 c. = 240 ml.

COMMON CONVERSIONS INTO GRAMS

1 t. (dry measure) = 4 g.
1 t. (liquid measure) - 5 g.
1/2 oz. = 14 g.
3/4 oz. = 21 g.
1 oz. = 28.35 g.
1 1/2 oz. = 43 g.
1 3/4 oz. = 50 g.
2 oz. = 57 g.
2 1/2 oz. = 71 g.
2 3/4 oz. = 78 g.
3 oz. = 85 g.
3 1/2 oz. = 99 g.
3.57 oz. = 100 g.
4 oz. = 114 g.
5 oz. = 142 g.
6 oz. = 170 g.
7 oz. = 199 g.
8 oz. = 226 g.
9 oz. = 254 g.
10 oz. = 283 g.
11 oz. = 311 g.
12 oz. = 340 g.
13 oz. = 368 g.
14 oz. = 396 g.
15 oz. = 425 g.
1/4 lb. (4 oz.) = 113 g.
1/2 lb. (8 oz.) = 225 g.
3/4 lb. (12 oz.) = 340 g.
1 lb. (16 oz.) = 453 g.
1 1/4 lb. = 566 g.
1 1/2 lb. = 679 g.
1 3/4 lb. = 792 g.
2 lb. = 905 g.
2 1/4 lb. = 1018 g.
3 lb. = 1.4 kilogram
10 oz. (many frozen foods) = 280 g.
10 1/2 oz. (canned soup) = 294g.
15 oz. = 425 g.
1 lb. 24 oz. (large can size) 850 g.

WEIGHTS AND MEASURES

a few grains = less than 1/8 t.
60 drops = 1 t.
1 1/2 t. = 1/2 T.
3 t. = 1 T.
2 T. = 1/8 c. (or 1 fluid oz.)
4 T. = 1/4 c.
5 1/3 T. = 1/3 c.
8 T. = 1/2 c.
10 2/3 T. = 2/3 c.
12 T. = 3/4 c.
16 T. = 1 c.
3/8 c. = 1/4 c. plus 2 T.
5/8 c. = 1/2 c. plus 2 T.
7/8 c. = 3/4 c. plus 2 T.
1 c. = 8 fluid oz.
2 c. = 1 pt. (or 16 fluid oz.)
2 pt. = 1 qt. (or 32 fluid oz.)
4 c. = 1 qt.
4 qt. = 1 gal.
8 qt. = 1 peck
4 pecks = 1 bushel
16 oz. = 1 lb.
1 g. = 0.035 oz.
1 kilogram = 2.21 lb.
1 oz. = 28.35 g.
1 lb. = 453.59 g.
1 t. = 4.9 milliliters
1 T. = 14.8 milliliters
1 c. = 236.6 milliliters
1 liter = 1.06 quarts (or 1000 milliliters)

METRIC CONVERSION FACTORS

WEIGHT
1 oz. = 28.35 g.
1 g. = 0.035 oz.
1 lb. = 453.59 g.
1 kilogram = 2.21 lb.

VOLUME
1 fluid oz. = 29.57 ml.
1 ml. = 0.034 oz.
1 c. = 236.6 ml.
1 qt. = 946 ml.
1 liter = 33.8 fl. oz.

LENGTH
1 inch = 25.4 millimeters
1 centimeter = 0.39 inch
1 meter = 39.4 inches

TEMPERATURE
To convert Fahrenheit to Celsius:
Subtract 32. Then multiply by 5/9.
Example: convert 140°F to Celsius.
140 - 32 = 108
108 x 5/9 = 60°C.

To convert Celsius to Fahrenheit:
Multiply by 9/5. Then add 32.
Example: convert 150°C to Fahrenheit.
150 x 9/5 = 270
270 + 32 = 302°F

8 COMMON CAUSES OF FAILURE IN CAKE MAKING

1.) Too hot oven causes cake to brown over on top before it has finished rising. Then as rising continues, the center portion breaks through the crust, giving a humpy, uneven shape to the cake
2.) Too slow of an oven (low temp.) allows the bubbles of gas to escape and the cake is too heavy.
3.) Too much flour makes a cake rise too high in the center and crack open. Also makes the cake dry and hard.
4.) Too little flour allows the cake to fall.
5.) Too much shortening makes a soggy cake with a greasy crumb.
6.) Too much sugar causes a heavy cake with a sugary crust.
7.) Insufficient creaming of the shortening and sugar makes a coarse texture.
8.) Too much beating after flour is added causes large holes and tunnels

December '92


REMOVE GRASS STAINS

For grass stains, combine a few drops of household ammonia with 1 t. peroxide. Rub stain with this mixture. Rinse with water as soon as stain disappears.

Aug. '92


GENERAL SHELF LIVES FOR COMMON ITEMS (From The Food Marketing Institute In Washington DC)

1.) Flour unopened: up to 12 months. Opened: 6-8 months.
2.) Whole Wheat Flour unopened: 1 month. Opened: 6-8 months if refrigerated.
3.) Sugar unopened: 2 years. Sugars do not spoil but eventually may change flavor.
4.) Brown sugar unopened: 4 months.
5.) Confectioners sugar unopened: 18 months.
6.) Solid shortening unopened: 8 months. Opened: 3 months.
7.) Cocoa unopened: indefinitely. opened: 1 year.
8.) Whole spices: 2-4 years. Whether or not opened.
9.) Ground spices: 2-3 years. Whether or not opened.
10.) Paprika, red pepper and chili powder: 2 years when kept in refrigerator.
11.) High acid canned items such as fruit juice, tomato soup and things in vinegar unopened: 12-18 months.
12.) Baking soda unopened: 18 months. Opened: 6 `months.
13.) Baking powder unopened: 6 months. Opened: 3 months.
14.) Cornstarch: 18 months. Whether or not opened.
15.) Dry pasta made without eggs unopened: 2 years. Opened: 1 year.
16.) Dry egg noodles unopened: 2 years. Opened: 1-2 months.
17.) Salad dressing unopened: 10-12 months. Opened: 3 months if refrigerated.
18.) Low acid canned items such as soup, meats, gravy and vegetables unopened: 2-5 years.
19.) Honey: 1 year. Weather or not opened.
20.) Worcestershire sauce: 1 year. Weather or not opened.
21.) Ground, canned coffee unopened: 2 years. Opened: 2 weeks, if refrigerated.
22.) Instant coffee in jars or tins unopened: 12 months. Opened: 3 months.
23.) Bottled water unopened: 1-2 years. Opened: 3 months.
24.) Pudding mixes unopened: 1 year. Opened: 4 months.
25.) Jams, jellies and preserves unopened: 1 year. Opened: 6 months if refrigerated.
26.) Peanut butter unopened: 6-9 months. Opened: 2-3 months.

May '99


TEST CLOTH FOR STAINS (Quality Cleaners in Royal Oak)

When attempting to remove a stain from clothing use an old piece of cloth of the same material to first test the results. Apply the same stain material to the test cloth. Then try the various stain remedies on the test cloth to find the one which works best on that specific stain. This way you'll keep from damaging the original garment before finding the best remedy!

Jan. '99


REMOVE WATER OR HEAT MARKS ON WOOD SURFACES (You Know, Those White Marks)

1.) Polish with pure lemon oil. Find a brand called o'cedar, we were told it's the best brand.
2.) Use Wright's silver polish, diluted slightly; apply gently, let stand and wipe dry.
3.) Use spirits of camphor.
4.) Mix cigar and or cigarette ashes with a couple of drops of water and make a paste. Rub lightly on the mark to remove.
5.) Try a paste of baking soda and water and use as above in number 4.
6.) Try as above using toothpaste.
7.) Again as above using mayonnaise.

GET RID OF SAND AND GRIT FROM CLAMS

Add corn meal to the soaking water. This will irritate the clams and they will expel the sand and grit while trying to get rid of the corn meal.

Jun. '99


GET RID OF FOOD MOTHS

Try a product called Pantry Pest Traps. Manufactured by Surefire Products by Concept Inc. 213 Southwest Columbia Street, Bend, OR., 97702

Jun. '99


REMOVE LIPSTICK STAINS

Our old friend Krud Kutter, available at hardware stores.

Jun. '99


GET RID OF MITES (The Garden Doctor)

Purchase a miteacide for the lawn like Kelthane or Tedion. Mix with water and pour into a sprayer. Spread it in a 1 foot strip around your entire home.

Jun. '99


SOFTEN BROWN SUGAR

Break off a chunk of the brown sugar (if you can). Wrap it in foil and bake in a 300° F oven for 5 minutes.

Jun. '99


CLEAN THE GRILL

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!

To be published in a future Menu Minder.


SUBSTITUTION CHART

WHEN YOU NEED:
1 t. baking powder
USE:
1/2 t. cream of tarter + 1/4 t. baking soda.
1 c. buttermilk
1 t. lemon juice or vinegar + enough milk to measure one c.
1 c. cake flour
7/8 c. all-purpose flour.
1 T. cornstarch
2 T. all-purpose flour.
3/4 c. cracker crumbs
1 c. bread crumbs.
1 c. dark corn syrup
3/4 c. light corn syrup + 1/4 c. molasses.
1 garlic clove, minced
1/8 t. garlic powder.
1 t. garlic salt
1/8 t. garlic powder + 7/8 t. salt.

1 c. half-and -half cream
1 T. melted butter + enough whole milk to =1 c.
1 c. honey
1 1/4 c. sugar + 1/4 c. liquid.
1 t. lemon juice
1/4 t. cider vinegar.
1 t. lemon peel
1/2 t. lemon extract.
1 c. light corn syrup
1 c. sugar + 1 c. liquid.
1 c. molasses
1 c. honey.
1 onion (small), chopped
1 t. onion powder or 1 T. dried minced onion.
1 T. prepared mustard
1/2 t. ground mustard + 2 t. vinegar.
1 semisweet chocolate square (1 oz.)
3 T. semisweet chocolate chips or 1 square (1 oz.) unsweetened chocolate + 1 T. sugar.
1 c. sour cream
1 c. plain yogurt.
1 c. sugar
1 c. packed brown sugar or 2 c. sifted confectioners sugar.
2 t. tapioca
1 T. all-purpose flour.
1 c. tomato juice
1/2 c. tomato sauce + 1/2 c. water.
2 c. tomato sauce.
3/4 c. tomato paste + 1 c. water.
1 unsweetened chocolate square (1 oz.)
3 T. cocoa + 1 T. shortening or oil.
1 c. whole milk
1/2 c. evaporated milk + 1/2 c. water.


June '99


SHOWER DOORS

To keep shower doors shiny and clear, use a soft cloth moistened with baby oil. It prevents scum build-up from dirt and soap. And hard water spots won't appear for several months

Aug. '99


REPLACEMENT PARTS FOR MOST KITCHEN APPLIANCES

Where do you find a replacement carafe for your coffee maker etc.? A company called: Appliances S.O.S (800) 543-7549.

Jun. '99


REPLACE CHINA - CRYSTAL - DINNERWARE

Here's the place that carries all the patterns and designs that you can't seem to find. Replacements Ltd. Located at P.O. Box 26029, 1089 Knox Rd. Greensboro, NC 27420. Toll free number is (800) REPLACE (737-5223). Or go to: www.replacements.com.

Oct. 1998


SILENCE SQUEAKING WOOD FLOORS

Dust talcum powder into the cracks. The listener who called this in said it works like magic.

Sept. '99


REMOVE WRINKLES FROM A VINYL COAT

Hang the coat on a hanger and go over wrinkles with a hair dryer til wrinkles come out.

Nov. '99


SOFTEN BLUE JEANS

Soak in full strength fabric softener (Like Downy) over night and launder as usual (repeat if necessary).

Dec. '99


GET RID OF SMALL MOTHS/BUGS

Fill a small bowl with white vinegar and a few drops of liquid dish soap. The moths are attracted to it, fall into it and expire. Strip the pantry and wash. Remove paper from cans and wash cans in hot soapy water. Discard anything containing wheat. Store flour and wheat containing products in air tight containers. You can even store in the refrigerator or freeze.

Dec. '99


REMOVE CRAYON STAINS

To remove crayon stains from glass, porcelain, Formica, metal, plastic, no-wax vinyl floors, painted walls, painted wood, scrubbable wallpaper, tile, chalkboard and marble. Spray surface to be cleaned with WD-40 and wipe with a soft cloth. If a residue remains add liquid dish washing detergent into water, wash the surface with a sponge, working in a circular motion and rinse. Repeat as needed.

Jan. 2000


TO RID BATS FROM THE ATTIC

Place 6 boxes of mothballs in the area where the bats are residing. The mothballs must contain the chemical naphthalene. The bats dislike loud music and bright lights too. Do not do this between Aug-Sept because they are spawning. They hibernate after that time and again you are not supposed to use the mothballs. You must find how they got into your home and close the opening.

Mar. 2000


REMOVE A BLEACH STAIN FROM A CARPET

Using a toothpick, mix colors of paint til you get the shade to match the carpet. Apply the paint very lightly to the bleached spot and let it dry. After it has dried reapply. Repeat this process til the color blends in with the carpet. This works best with very small stains. If the stain is too large the paint will leave the carpet stiff. If you can get a color close enough to match you can use magic marker or colored felt tip pens.

April 2000


MAKE YOUR GRASS GREENER (The Garden Doctor)

1.) Leave grass about 2 inches high.
2.) Sometimes your soil has a deficiency of magnesium and iron. These 2 nutrients are essential to make the grass green. There are fertilizers which have these ingredients in them already (Scotts and Greenfields are some brand names. Look for a high nitrogen number and iron added) and you just follow the directions on the bag. If you go out and buy magnesium carbonate (epsom salts) you mix 2 LEVEL T. to a gallon of water and spray the lawn evenly and then water it down into the grass. The iron is sold in percentages 10,12 and 15 %. Follow the package directions for spraying on your lawn.

May 2000


REMOVE A RING STUCK ON YOUR FINGER

Wrap your finger tightly with dental floss and then you can take the ring off over that.

May 2000


REMOVE PROBLEM STAINS

The neighbor that called this one in says this works great on perspiration stains, baby formula stains, set stains, and even chocolate stains.

1 c. Dove liquid dish soap
1 c. dry Clorox bleach (non-chlorinated)

Mix all with 1 gallon of the hottest water the material can handle. Soak for up to 3 days. If the stain isn't out by the 3rd day, make a new solution and re-soak the material. If there is an odor problem as well add 1 c. ammonia to the solution. Works great on whites; if using color, make sure the material you soak is color-fast or test a portion that will not show.

May 2000


NO STREAK WINDOW CLEANING

Clean windows with your favorite window cleaner or use a mixture of 1/4 -1/2 c. white vinegar, 1-2 T. lemon juice or 1-2 T. rubbing alcohol. (one neighbor said to add 2-3 drops of dishwasher detergent) and 1 quart water. Wipe dry with crumpled up newspaper sheets.
Note: another neighbor says to let the newspaper ink dry for 3 weeks so you don't get it all over your hands.

Oct. 1999


IDEAS FOR SERVING PERISHABLE FOODS AT OUTDOOR PARTIES

Purchase a children's inflatable pool for around $5.00 at a Meijer's, K-Mart or Wal-Mart. Fill full of ice (about 10 lb.) Place the bowls of chicken salad, potato salad, shrimp, cocktail sauce, cold beer, wine, etc. in the ice. You can place flowers around the ice or add a center piece for display too. You may try making an "ice bowl" too. Put some water in a large bowl, pour cold water in the bowl and place a smaller bowl inside. Weigh the small bowl down with something heavy and freeze. You can add lemon slices for decoration. Remember to pre-chill the items before serving. Try not to let the food stay out for much more than 1 hour. You can make smaller servings and replenish them each hour for longer parties. The rule is: keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold i.e.: under 40° or over 140°.

June, 2000


TO CLEAN THE BOTTOM OF AN IRON

Using 4 ought steel wool, rub the bottom of the cold iron until you've gotten it clean. Heat the iron to the warm setting and run it across waxed paper. Then run the iron over an old white cloth to remove any excess wax.

May, 1999


KEEP ANIMALS FROM SHRUBS AND GARDENS (The Garden Doctor)

RABBITS, WOODCHUCKS AND DEER:

Use blood meal or dried blood. Apply a thin coating to the earth. Adding a lot will rid the area of humans too because it has an offensive odor!

CHIPMUNKS OR SQUIRRELS:

Use a fungicide with a product called Thiram added to it. This will last about 4-6 weeks depending on the rainfall.

CATS AND DOGS:

Bury an empty pop or beer bottle in the ground so that the top is level with the ground and fill it with 2 parts ammonia and 1 part water. This will evaporate so you must refill it periodically.

June, 2000


MUSTY ODOR FROM TOWELS

1.) Let the towels dry out before putting them in the hamper.
2.) Do not let the towels sit in the washer after the cycle is through, remove right away.
3.) Wash the towels with 20 Mule Team Borax following the package directions along with your detergent. This will sweeten up the towels.
4.) Make sure your washing machine is clean.
5.) Add 1 c. vinegar to the rinse cycle.

July, 2000


TO CLEAN YOUR WASHING MACHINE

This should be done every 6 months. Fill washing machine with very hot to boiling water, add 2 gallons of vinegar and let agitate for 8-10 minutes. Turn machine off and let stand over night. Turn machine on and let it run through a complete cycle.

July, 2000


PREMADE CABBAGE LEAVES FOR STUFFED CABBAGE

Cut the core out of the cabbage. Place in a heavy-duty plastic bag and put in the freezer (this can be done a couple of days before preparing the stuffed cabbages). Thaw out in the refrigerator the day before preparation. The leaves will "fall right off" and be pliable enough to roll too.

TIPS FOR GREAT GOWUMKE (Killer Cabbage)

1.) Use V-8 juice instead of tomato.
2.) Add Tabasco sauce or hot pepper to the meat.
3.) Use a mixture of 1/2 pork and 1/2 ground beef.
4.) Add sautéed onion.
5.) Add Lawreys seasoned salt.
6.) Place 2 ham shanks in bottom of the container before layering the cabbage rolls to cook. Serve them cut-up with the rolls.
7.) Add cumin powder.
8.) Load up on minced garlic.
9.) Put the outer leaves of the cabbage on the bottom of the cooking container to keep the rolls from burning.
10.) Use a mixture of 1/3 lamb, 1/3 veal and 1/3 beef.
11.) Add apple slices to the bottom of the cooking container.
12.) Add caraway seed.
13.) Add smoked kielbasa to the cooking liquid.
14.) Don't use lean beef.
15.) Add a bit of drained sauerkraut.
16.) Use chopped tomatoes in the filling to keep it moist.

July, 2000


TO CLEAN UNDISSOLVED SOAP IN A DISHWASHER

Give your dishwasher a refreshing drink of Tang every month or two. Dump an entire pint jar of Tang into the bottom of an empty dishwasher. Preheat the water by running tap water in the sink til it's hot. Then run a full cycle. Also, store your powdered detergent in a plastic bag to keep it as dry as possible, it will work better in the dishwasher. It is also a good idea to refer back to the manufacturer's manual to see their method for proper loading of the unit. The use of Tang applies to your washing machine as well! It removes the build-up of detergent and mineral deposits. Depending on how often you use these appliances, you should do this every few months. Also be sure you don't overdo the detergent - follow your manufacturer's instructions and even a little less!

April, 1998


ELIMINATE DISCOLORATION AND COVER SCRATCHES IN WOOD FURNITURE

Break a piece of peanut, walnut or pecan and rub the broken side over scratches in wooden furniture. The oil from the nutmeat can eliminate discoloration and the furniture may look almost as good as new.

October, 1999


PREVENT CLOUDINESS IN CRYSTAL GLASSWARE

Add vinegar to the wash water. Don't use the dishwasher. Wash by hand using about 1/2-1c. vinegar to 1 gal. hot water. Or for better results, soak glasses in a strong vinegar solution (1-2 c. per gal. hot water) for several hours or overnight. Repeat if necessary.

August, 2000


TO REMOVE ODORS IN A CLOSET

Wash the walls, ceiling and floor thoroughly with a mixture of 1 c. ammonia, 1 c white vinegar and 1/4 c. baking soda for every gallon of water. Repeat if necessary. If closet odors persist, place a shallow pan of kitty litter in the closet. Keep door closed and replenish the litter every few days til the odor is gone.

August, 2000


WASHING DOWN PILLOWS

Launder in washing machine. Place in dryer and put 4 new tennis balls in with the pillows (if you don't have the balls use clean tennis shoes). This pounds and fluffs the pillows. This is noisy. This can take longer than a single drying cycle. Feel the pillows with your fingers to make sure the feathers are dry and not matted. If you feel any "lumps", return to drier.

September, 2000


CLEAN STUFFED ANIMALS

Place animal in a paper bag, add corn meal and shake the bag for a minute or so. Let stand for several hours. Brush the corn meal off. This absorbs the oils and grease. Repeat if necessary.

September, 2000


TO STORE PEPPERS (Jan Atwood)

FREEZE THEM: Seed the peppers and put them in a freeze-lock plastic container then freeze. Be aware that they will be slightly mushy but still good for sauces and such. (you can also freeze the peppers whole, this will result in a hotter pepper because of the seeds remaining intact)
DRY THEM: Cut peppers length-wise and seed them (using a spoon was suggested) and place on a cookie sheet or baking pan. Put your oven on its lowest setting (150° is desired but your oven may not go that low), place peppers in oven and prop the oven door open with a wooden spoon (just slightly ajar, about 1 inch or so). Cook for 24-48 hours til they are brittle and dry. Remove, cool and chop to desired consistency (caller uses a food processor for this task). Store in a tightly sealed jar.
Note: when handling hot peppers wear rubber gloves and do not touch your eyes or face.

October, 2000


KEEP SQUIRRELS OFF THE BIRD FEEDER

Add a few T. of cayenne pepper to the bird seed and blend it together. The bird's digestive system is not affected, but the squirrels discover it's "hot stuff".

We received this note from Ingred in Toronto:
I just happened upon your site and saw the advise regarding squirrels. Please never mention any type of cayenne, capascum or red pepper to put in the bird feeders or even sprinkle around. Squirrels have been documented to 'scratch out their eyes' should they get this stuff on their paws first!!! Nothing is that important in the human world.
Thanks Ingred.

October, 2000


KEEP SQUIRRELS OUT OF THE BIRD FEEDER

If your feeder in mounted on a pole, put a stove pipe or 4-6 inch diameter PCV pipe around the pole (from the bottom). They can't wrap their paws around the pipe and won't be able to climb up the pole. You can also put a piece of PCV pipe around the chain if your feeder is a hanging type.

May, 2002


CLEAN OIL FROM THE DRIVEWAY

Try a product called Oil Dry. It is available at your local auto parts store.
NOTE: please see below in March 2001, there are more details there.

October, 2000


PHONE NUMBER FOR FREE BISQUICK RECIPES

1-800-336-9331.

November, 2000


SHELF LIFE FOR FROZEN POULTRY

For whole turkey or chicken: 1 year
For turkey or chicken pieces: 9 months

November, 2000


REMOVE INK FROM WOOD FURNITURE

Purchase Mequiars heavy duty rubbing compound and mirror polish (or swirl remover) at the auto parts store. Apply a couple of drops of the rubbing compound and rub in a circular motion. Then apply a couple more drops and rub with the grain of the wood. Then apply a couple of drops of the polish and gently rub out the marks from the rubbing compound. Finish the wood off by applying Doozy furniture polish. See: Doozy.Com

December, 2000


ADDITIONAL USES FOR BOUNCE FABRIC SOFTENER (From Sandy Boakes)

*Repels mosquitoes. Tie a sheet of Bounce through a belt loop when outdoors during mosquito season.
*Eliminates static electricity from your television screen. Since Bounce is designed to help eliminate static cling, wipe your television screen with a used sheet of Bounce to keep dust from resettling.
*Dissolves soap scum from shower doors. Clean with a used sheet of Bounce.
*Freshens the air in your home. Place an individual sheet of Bounce in a drawer or hang one in the closet.
*Prevents thread from tangling. Run a threaded needle through a sheet of Bounce to eliminate the static cling on the thread before sewing.
*Eliminates static cling from hose. Rub a damp, used sheet of Bounce over the hose.
*Prevents musty suitcases. Place an individual sheet of Bounce inside empty luggage before storing.
*Freshens the air in your car. Place a sheet of Bounce under the front seat.
*Cleans baked-on food from a cooking pan. Put a sheet in the pan, fill with water, let sit overnight, and sponge clean. The antistatic agents apparently weaken the bond between the food and the pan while the fabric softening agents soften the baked-on food.
*Eliminates odors in wastebaskets. Place a sheet of Bounce at the bottom of the wastebasket.
*Collects cat hair. Rubbing the area with a sheet of Bounce will magnetically attract all the loose hairs.
*Eliminates static electricity from Venetian blinds. Wipe the blinds with a sheet of Bounce to prevent dust from resetting.
*Deodorizes shoes or sneakers. Place a sheet of Bounce in your shoes or sneakers overnight so they'll smell great in the morning.

December, 2000


MORE ADDITIONAL USES FOR BOUNCE FABRIC SOFTENER

1.) Rub on hair brushes to prevent static cling.
2.) Gently rub on your hair to eliminate static.
Note: use Bounce Free (unscented).

January, 2001


REMOVE DENTS IN CARPET FROM FURNITURE

Very carefully lift up the fibers in the indentation using the tines of a fork. You may have to apply some steam as well. Use a steam iron, but don't let the carpet get wet.

Nov., 2000


KEEP CAR DOORS FROM FREEZING SHUT

Spray the rubber door lining with WD-40 or silicone lubricant. Don't forget to spray again after getting your car washed in freezing temperatures.

Jan., 2001


CLEAN BURNT STAINLESS STEEL POTS

Sprinkle electric dishwasher powder liberally over the burnt area of the pot (about 2-3 T.). Fill the pot 1/2 way with water, cover with lid and bring to the boil. Reduce to a simmer for a few minutes and take a brush to it to clean.

November, 2000


DONATE USED CHRISTMAS CARDS

Send the front portion of the card only. They also take Campbell's soup can labels. Send to:

Children's Ranch
100 St. Judes Street Dept. EMIB
Boulder City, NV 39006-0100

Feb., 2001


REPLACEMENT FILTERS FOR DURA-CRAFT HUMIDIFIERS

Many times it is difficult to locate a filter for an older model humidifier. Just call the company at: 1-(800)-554-4558.

February, 2001


REMOVE OIL FROM DRIVEWAY

Cover oil with a product called Oil-Dry which you can find at auto supply stores. You can use Kitty Litter if you can't find the Oil-Dry. Scrub the stain left behind with a product called Gunk powdered floor cleaner or use a concrete cleaner.

March, 2001


CLEAR A FROZEN DRAIN-LINE IN YOUR REFRIGERATOR

Boil a pot of water. Fill a turkey baster with the water and squirt down the drain line.

March, 2001


REMOVE CLOUDINESS FROM GLASSWARE

Soak glassware in a solution of hot water and white vinegar or full strength vinegar depending on how cloudy it is. Scrub with a brush then wash. If glasses are cloudy only on the inside, just fill with vinegar or vinegar/water solution. The amount of soaking time depends on the cloudiness of the glasses. Repeat if necessary.

March, 2001


USED PANTYHOSE FOR DRYING SWEATERS

Put the panty hose in the neck of the sweater and run the legs of the panty hose down through the arms. Now you can hang the sweater up very nicely and let it dry on the line by clipping the clothespins to the panty hose instead of the sweater. This eliminates any "clip" marks and helps the sweater dry faster.

March, 2001


REMOVE TARTNESS FROM SAUERKRAUT

If you're using kraut in the jar, just rinse it off with water.
If you're using kraut in the bag, pour boiling water over it and let it stand for 5 minutes and drain.
If you're using kraut from a can, drain it, place it in a pot of boiling water and cook for 5 minutes.
NOTE: reserve the drained juice to add in small amounts to taste in case the kraut is too bland. This way you can control the sourness of the end product.

April, 2001


FREE PINEAPPLE RECIPES

Write a note with your name and address clearly printed to:

Pineapple Recipes
P.O. Box 8109-A
Clinton, IA, 52736

April, 2001


SUBSTITUTE EQUAL FOR SUGAR

1 pkg. Equal = 2 t. sugar.

April, 2001


REMOVE MUSTARD STAINS FROM CLOTHING

Apply a few drops of glycerine and rub it in with your fingers. Rinse the stain with water and launder as usual.

November, 2001


SAVING NEWSPRINT

Sandwich the clipping between a couple of stainless steel window screens and soak in a solution of 1 t. magnesium carbonate and 1 qt. club soda. Soak for 30 minutes. Let dry.

May, 2001


TO CRISP UP CELERY OR CARROTS

Dissolve 1/2 t. sugar in some cold water. Place cut up vegetables in the water and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes to a couple of hours.

May, 2001


STORE LEEKS IN FREEZER

Clean and chop or dice the white parts of the leek. Place in a bag and freeze. Use for garnish or flavorings as needed. This works very well for onions too.

November, 2000


GREEN UP THE GRASS (The Garden Doctor)

Mix 2 T. epsom salt with 1 gal. water and spray the lawn.

June, 2001


OLD FASHIONED DRAIN CLEANER (From Velma)

Pour 1 c. baking soda down the drain. Pour 1 pt. white vinegar down the drain. Let sit for 1 hour. Run hot water to flush the pipes. If it's a basement drain, use a bucket of boiling water. If the pipe is plugged with hair, etc. this probably won't clear it; you'll need something stronger. But this method will control odors and keep drains sweet.

June, 2001


KEEP DEER FROM YOUR BACKYARD AREA (The Garden Doctor)

Try a product called Hinder. Spray it on the plants in the areas they're coming to and it will repel them. Product doesn't last forever, so you'll need to replace it every couple of weeks or so. You can mix it up and spray it on using a sprayer.

July, 2001


FEED HUMMINGBIRDS (Rick)

4 c. water
1 c. sugar

Boil the mixture for 5 minutes. Let cool and fill the hummingbird feeder. The mixture will keep up to 2 weeks when refrigerated. Change the feed mixture every three days when the weather is hot. You need to clean the feeder thoroughly too. Try placing the feeder around these plants: columbine, bee balm, impatients, petunias and coral bells. Don't use red food coloring or honey.

July, 2001


STRIPPING AND PRESERVING WOOD DECKS (The Home Improvement Doctor)

Purchase a product called Strip-X (for a stained deck) made by Bio-Wash. Apply with a roller or a brush. Let stand 15 minutes and rinse clean with the garden hose. Apply neutralizer (make sure the neutralizer comes with the Strip-X. It is suppose to be in a small bag that's attached) and let stand 2 minutes; rinse again with the hose. Let the deck dry. Buy a stain with UV protection (follow the directions of the stain).

August, 2001


POUNDING NOISE FROM YOUR PIPES (Air Hammer Or Water Hammer)

Turn your main water valve off (this should be located by the water meter). Open all of the "cold" water faucets all the way. and let them drain completely. Close all of the faucets after draining. Turn main water valve back on. Go to each water faucet and open each up very slowly (they will "spit and pop") til water is running through again (this will establish an air-pocket which should stop the noise). Turn off the faucet and repeat this for each faucet.

August, 2001


GET RID OF CARPENTER ANTS (Home Made Remedy)

Mix 1/2 c. molasses, 1 pkg. dry yeast and 1/4 c. sugar well. Spread with a knife onto cardboard and place it where the ants are seen.

August, 2001


FREEZE TOMATOES

Wash and core tomatoes (skin and seed if you care to). Place into freezer containers and freeze. They should last up to 1 year. You can use them as you would canned tomatoes.

September, 2001


GARLIC SPRAY DEER AND ANIMAL REPELLENT (Barb Hallman)

2 eggs
2 c. water
4 cloves garlic
2 t. Tabasco sauce

Blend til smooth and let stand 2 days. Use with garden sprayer to spray yard and gardens.

September, 2001


REMOVE WRINKLES FROM PLASTIC TABLE COVERS

Place table cover in the dryer with a wet towel on high heat for a couple of minutes. You want it to almost feel like it's "melting" But caller assures it's not. This is to soften up the cover and make it pliable enough to pull the wrinkles out. Place cover over the table and pull wrinkles out. Watch carefully so it doesn't melt!

October, 2001


FREEZING SWISS CHARD

Wash and cut off the "woody" stems. Place in boiling water and blanch for 2 minutes (stir it around so it doesn't get "matted"). Remove from water and place in another bowl of ice-cold water to stop the cooking process. Drain, place in freezer bags and freeze. Use in casseroles, vegetable lasagna or as a side dish.

November, 2001


EXTRACT PULP FROM PUMPKINS

Knock the stem off. Pierce the top 3-4 times, the middle 3-4 times and the same to the bottom to vent (use a paring knife or an ice pick). Place a piece of waxed paper in the microwave and cook for 5 minutes on high (for a 700 watt microwave). Turn the pumpkin over and cook for 5 more minutes. Remove from the microwave and wrap the pumpkin in a towel for 10 minutes. Cut the pumpkin in half, remove the seeds with a fork and scrape the pulp out with a spoon. A 5 lb. pumpkin should yield about 3 c. of pulp.

FOR SQUASH:
Acorn squash is done the same way but cook for 3 minutes. Cut in half and add butter, cinnamon or syrup and cook for another 3-4 minutes or til squash is tender.

November, 2001





CLEANING COFFEE MAKERS

Fill the decanter with white vinegar. Place a filter in the machine, pour in the vinegar and run about 3 c. of the vinegar into the decanter. Turn the machine off and let stand for 30 minutes. Pour the 3 c. of vinegar back into the coffee maker, turn it back on and let the vinegar run completely through the machine. Discard the vinegar and the used coffee filter. Replace the filter with a clean one and run a decanter of fresh water through the machine. Remove the filter and replace with a new one and run another decanter of fresh water through the machine. If you have soft water, you'll need to clean the machine after 80 brew cycles. If you have hard water, every 40 cycles

November, 2001


. PREVENT PUMPKIN PIE FROM GETTING SOGGY

Here are 3 different suggestions we received:
1.) Pre-bake the crust for 10 minutes at 350° before you put in the filling.
2.) Put the crust into the pie tin and lightly butter the crust.
3.) Start pie in a 425° oven for 15 minutes, reduce to 350° and continue baking til the filling is firm (about 45-50 minutes).

December, 2001


REMOVE SMOKE ODOR FROM WOOD TABLE (Chairs, Cabinets, Etc.)

Invert the table and sprinkle the underside of the table with fresh coffee grounds. Cover the table with a plastic sheet and seal it to the floor with masking tape. Let the table sit for 1 week to pull the odor out.

January, 2002


REMOVE STRONG ODORS IN YOUR REFRIGERATOR

Clean the seals of the refrigerator with a baking powder water solution (see the box of baking soda for amounts). Place fresh coffee grounds on a saucer and put in refrigerator for up to 1 week.

January, 2002


OLD FASHIONED REMEDY FOR UPSET STOMACH

Mix 4 oz. of "real" orange juice, 4 oz. water, 2 T. Karo syrup and a pinch of salt. Take 1 T. of the mixture every 15 minutes when you're nauseated. Store in the refrigerator.

January, 2002


KING ARTHUR CATALOG FOR BAKERS

Call toll free for information: 1-800-827-6836.
Check out www.kingarthurflour.com for free recipes too.

January, 2002


REMOVE BURNT-ON FOOD FROM A POT

Put the pot in the freezer for a couple of hours. Remove and wash it out as you would normally.

February, 2002


CLEAN THE INSIDE OF COPPER PANS USING NATURAL INGREDIENTS

Mix equal amounts of cornmeal, salt and white vinegar into a paste. Apply the paste to the surface area to be cleaned. Rub off. Rinse.

February, 2002


CLEAN THE OUTSIDE OF COPPER PANS

If you want to use a natural ingredient, rub ketchup on the copper and let sit for a minute. Rub off then rinse.
You can also use a product called Copper-Glo.

February, 2002


SUBSTITUTE APPLESAUCE FOR SHORTENING

You can substitute applesauce for shortening 1 for 1 up to 1 c. This means you can use 1 c. applesauce for 1 cup shortening. Beyond 1 c., use oil or shortening for the remainder of the amount. So if your recipe called for 1 1/2 c. shortening you would use 1 c. applesauce and 1/2 c. shortening.

February, 2002


FINDING HARD BOILED EGGS MIXED IN WITH FRESH EGGS

Spin the egg on its side. The hard boiled ones will spin well, the fresh ones won't.

March, 2002


REMEDY FOR SORE THROAT

8-12 oz. water (as hot as you can stand it)
1 oz. hydrogen peroxide
1 t. salt

Mix together and gargle once per hour.

March, 2002


REMOVE GUM FROM THE DRYER

Apply a light application of Goo-Gone onto a cloth. Rub on the gum, let stand and wipe off. Repeat if necessary. Rinse well with soap and water (til odor is gone) before using dryer again. Check your local hardware store for Goo-Gone.

March, 2002


WHEN KIDS DON'T LIKE VEGETABLES

Try pureeing some vegetables into spaghetti sauce so they can't see the vegetables.

March, 2002


SLIP AND FALL WHEN GETTING OUT OF A CAR

When you open your car door and step out, hold on to the door or roof until you are completely out of the car so you don't slip and fall.

April, 2002


SOME USES FOR VINEGAR (From The Incredible Secrets Of Vinegar By Marie Nadine Antol - Avery Publishing)

CHINA: scrub coffee and tea stains off your teacups with equal parts white vinegar and salt.
FISH BOWL: rub away the film on the inside of the bowl using a cloth dipped in white vinegar. Rinse the bowl very well before putting the fish back in.
DRAIN: Wash away drain odors with 1 c. of baking soda followed by 1 c. of white vinegar. Turn on your hot water full force to wash it down.
PAINTBRUSHES: To save a good paintbrush that's encrusted with dried paint, bring white vinegar to a boil, pour it over the brush and let the brush stand in the vinegar for 1 hour. Heat the vinegar again with the brush still in it until it comes to a simmer. "Cook" for 20 minutes to soften the paint. Repeat if necessary.
FOOT ODOR: soak smelly feet in 1 qt. of lukewarm water and 1/2 c. vinegar for 15 minutes twice a week.
DANDRUFF: after you shampoo, rinse your hair with a mixture of 1/2 c. vinegar and 1 c. warm water and leave it in. Don't worry, the smell will fade.
LUNCH BOXES: Freshen up a smelly lunch box with a slice of bread moistened with white vinegar. Put the bread in the box, close the lid and let it sit overnight.

April, 2002


REMOVE LADYBUGS FROM YOUR HOME

Vacuum up the bugs and dispose of the vacuum bag outside of the house. Try spraying a contact insecticide (like Nu-Mrk) around the outside of the foundation wall of your home. If you have a black light available turn it on at night in the area they congregate and they are supposed to be drawn to the light, making it easier to vacuum the entire group.

May, 2002


REMOVE BALL POINT INK STAIN FROM CLOTHING

Place the stained area on a clean towel or piece of cloth (use a clean rag because it will be ruined afterwards) and spray with an aerosol (not pump type) hair spray til wet. Brush with a soft brush til the stain is gone. Launder as usual.

May, 2002


SEED AND PLANT CATALOGUES

Gurney: 1-800-531-5887
Park Seeds: 1-800-845-3369
Burpee: 1-800-888-1447
Van Bourgondien: 1-800-622-9997
Stokes: 1-800-396-9238

June, 2002


DETERMINE THE AMOUNT OF WATER YOU SPRINKLE ON YOUR LAWN (The Garden Doctor)

Mark a tin can with a 1 inch mark and set it out on the lawn before you start sprinkling. Turn on sprinkler and start timing with a watch til the water comes to the 1 inch mark. You now know how many minutes it takes to give your lawn 1 inch of water. Don says you'll need to water 1 inch per week. By giving your lawn the 1 inch of water it will drive the water down 4-6 inches giving your lawn the proper moisture needed.

July, 2002


DRY ROSE PETALS TO MAKE A POTPOURRI

Place the individual rose petals in a single layer on paper toweling. Cook for 1 minute (using an 800 watt microwave). If petals are not completely dried, continue cooking in 10-15 second cycles. Place on a cookie sheet and continue cooking petals til you have enough for the potpourri. Put petals into a jar and sprinkle with a few drops of rose oil.

July, 2002


REMOVE RING AROUND THE COLLAR

For "ring around the collar," use a bar of white, mild soap that is free of moisturizers. Rub the soap along the collar and throw the item in the wash.

August, 2002


SKUNK ODOR HINTS

Mix Massengill feminine douche powder as per directions. With a spray bottle, saturate the affected animal or surface and bathe.

August, 2002


STORING BREAD (Nancy Silverton)

Bread should never go in the refrigerator (breads with no preservatives).
Freeze bread. Let thaw. Bake in 400° oven for 4 minutes. This will refresh the bread.
Nancy is the founder of La Brea Breads which are available locally at Farmer Jack.

September, 2002


MICHIGAN STATE FAIR BLUE RIBBON RECIPES COOKBOOK

Make a check or money order for $18.00 U.S. to Michigan State Fair or State of Michigan and send to:
Michigan State Fair - Community Arts Building
1120 W. State Fair Ave.
Detroit, MI 48203
Attention Cookbooks

These are the blue ribbon winners from the 2000 and 2001 state fair contests.

September, 2002


CLEANING STUFFED ANIMALS

Place in dryer on "low" setting with a sheet of Bounce fabric softener or other dryer sheet.

September, 2002


KEEP VEGGIES GREEN

Prepare the green vegetable for cooking. Boil water that is lightly salted in a saucepan. Once it is boiling plunge the vegetables in the water and cook (or cook over a steamer) for 3 to 5 minutes until al dente or tender to your taste. Drain immediately and plunge vegetables into iced water to stop the cooking and cool completely. Drain. The vegetables will be vibrant green. When ready to serve. Place vegetables into a saucepan with butter or a little water or both and gently heat and serve. They will retain their vibrant green color.

October, 2002


MANTAINING CLEAN DRAINS

After running hot water through, pour 1/3 to 1/2 c. baking soda. Follow with 1 c. vinegar. Let foam. Rinse through.

October, 2002


REMOVE PET ODORS AND STAINS

Use a product called Natures Miracle. It is available at some pet stores (caller said she found it at Pet Smart) and some vets.

November, 2002


REMOVE BLOOD STAINS

A mixture of 1/2 c. 3% hydrogen peroxide and 1 t. ammonia.

November, 2002


COOK IDAHO OR SWEET POTATOES IN A MICROWAVE OVEN

Wash and scrub 2 (5-7 oz. ea.) potatoes and pierce them with a fork in several places (so steam can escape). Cook 5-9 minutes (8-13 minutes if you have 4 potatoes), on high (this depends on the power of your microwave oven). Test with a fork to when they're tender. Let stand 2-3 minutes covered.

December, 2002


THE SENIOR SAYING

I'm lost, I've gone to look for myself.
If I should return before I get back...
ask me to wait.

Author Unknown.

December, 2002


KEEP YOUR HANDS WARM IN WINTER (Tony P.)

Tony says: "I found a great way to keep my hands warmer when working outside in the cold weather. I put on a pair of rubber surgical gloves under my wool gloves when I was using my snow blower this Christmas day. I cleared my drive as well as two older neighbor's drives. It took me two and a half hours and my fingers never got cold! It works on the same principle as wet suits work for skin divers.

January, 2003


VIP SUPPORT GROUP INFORMATION (Jan Atwood)

Our V.I.P. neighbor Jan runs a local support group and will be happy to share information on support groups for visually impaired persons in your area. Please call Jan at (248) 569-3494.

January, 2003


SUBSTITUTES FOR ONE WHOLE EGG IN A RECIPE

1.) Mix 1 t. cornstarch with 3 T. extra liquid (whatever liquid is called for in the recipe).
2.) 2 T. oil plus 1 T. water.
3.) 2 T. liquid plus 2 T. flour, plus 1/2 T. shortening, plus 1/2 t. baking powder.

January, 2003


WATER FOR BIRDS IN WINTER MONTHS

It is important to maintain a supply of water for birds during the winter, both for drinking and maintenance of feathers. They need to bathe during frosty weather to maintain their plumage to keep warm. Keep your birdbath free of ice (you can buy a thermostatic immersion heater). Never use anti-freeze or salt to prevent the water from freezing because it will harm the birds.

March, 2003


TRAIN PETS TO STAY OFF FURNITURE

Put aluminum foil on the furniture. They won't care for it and should get the message.

March, 2003


CLEAN SHOWER CURTAINS

1.) Run them in the washer with warm water, soap and bleach. Dry on medium cycle.
2.) Run in washing machine. Wash with detergent, 1c. vinegar, 1 c. ammonia and use hot water. Add a couple of towels to balance out the load. Dry in the dryer for about 5 minutes and re-hang.

April, 2003


KEEP MILDEW FROM SHOWER CURTAINS (Gertrude's)

Cut off the bottom hem on the shower curtain so the water can't collect there. Give it a good shake after a shower to remove as much water as you can.

April, 2003


ADD SOME ZIP TO YOUR EGG SALAD (P.J.'s)

Add a little hot sauce, Worcestershire sauce and/or Tiger sauce to taste for a new "improved" flavor.

April, 2003


ADD SOME ZIP TO YOUR TUNA, HAM OR CHICKEN SALAD (Sue's)

Add some finely minced sweet pickled gerkins or well drained pickle relish. Instead of using mayonnaise substitute Marzetti's slaw dressing.

April, 2003


UNSTICK STUCK PHOTOGRAPHS

Put them in the freezer for 10-20 minutes. Gently break apart using a butter knife. Put back into freezer if they don't come apart easily.

May, 2003


HEATING A PASTA BOWL (From Cooks Magazine)

To easily heat a large serving bowl for pasta, place a colander in the bowl, pour the pasta and water into the colander and let the hot water stand in the bowl for a few seconds to heat it. Then pour out the water, add the pasta and sauce, toss and serve. For information on Cooks Magazine call: 1-(800)-526-8442 in the U.S. Outside U.S. call: (515) 247-7571.

May, 2003


STOP MINT PLANTS FROM TAKING OVER YOUR GARDEN (Pat's)

Cut out the bottom off a large (3 lb.) coffee can and push it down into the ground and then plant the mint inside the can. The roots won't be able to spread out all over your garden.

June, 2003


HELP CONTROL MOSQUITO'S IN YOUR BIRD BATH

Add a few drops of canola, or vegetable oil to the bird bath water (enough to make a light film) it won't harm the birds, but will help control the laying of the mosquito's eggs.

July, 2003


ADJUST THE TEMPERATURE OF YOUR STOVE

Find out the true temperature of your stove using an oven thermometer. If the stove is off, pull the temperature knob off the stove and inside that knob there are 2 "set screws". Loosen the screws and turn the dial knob to the correct temperature setting (higher or lower) and check the temperature til you have it correct. Tighten the screws and put the knob back.

July, 2003


The following tips are from the great fund raising book for ch. 56: Haley's Hints. It's available at good bookstores, but it would be even better if you made a donation to public TV through their website: detroitpublictv.org or call 1-800-859-9887.

HOMEMADE FURNITURE POLISHERS (From Haley's Hints)


1/3 c. white vinegar
1/3 c. turpentine
1/3 c. boiled linseed oil
4 t. almond extract (for a pleasant fragrance)

bottle and shake well before using. Apply with a soft damp cloth and polish with another clean lint-free cloth.

ALTERNATIVES:
1.) A mixture of 3 parts olive oil and 1 part lemon oil.
2.) If you don't have lemon oil, use 1 t. olive oil and 1 c. white vinegar.
3.) You can replace lemon oil with mineral oil, because that is what many lemon oils have as a base.

CLEAN SHOWER DOORS (From Haley's Hints)

If that leftover bottle of white wine has gone sour on you, use it on your shower door instead of throwing it out. Rinse off with water and dry well...even if it's a dry wine. Or you can wipe the shower door with some fabric softener on a damp cloth. Buff with a clean, dry cloth.

July, 2003


REMOVE STAINS FROM CONCRETE (Murray Gula, The Home Improvement Doctor)

Use a product called Pour And Restore. Pour the product on the stain and let it dry. Sweep it away. Rinse it off. If you can't find the product you can phone the company at: 1-877-609-3343. Murray is heard on our program every Friday at 10:30 AM. He is also on W.J.R. (760 AM) Saturday and Sunday from noon - 3 PM.

August, 2003


CLEAN THE BIRDBATH

Scrub the birdbath with a very stiff, wire grille brush (one I keep only for the birdbath) every 2-3 weeks and wash it all away with the garden hose.

Katherine sent us this from www.birdwatchersgeneralstore.com.
Question: "Dear Bird Folks, I want to get a new birdbath for my wife. Do you have any suggestions?" -Wondering, Chatham.

Answer: "Hi, Wondering: How big is your wife? She might be more comfortable in a new hot tub, though that's up to you. But seriously, most people like to buy birdbaths that are deep so they won't have to fill them as often. The birds, however, seem to like birdbaths that are fairly shallow. Try to imagine how small a finch or a chickadee is. A six inch deep bath is way too deep for those small birds to use. And remember, birds are drinking and bathing in the same water. Most people, except for my kids, would rather not do that. So it is important to keep the water fresh. A birdbath still has to be cleaned regularly, no matter how deep it is. The other thing is that many people seem to like painted or glazed birdbaths because they are easier to clean out. However, most birds seem to like a bath that is rough or that has some texture to it so they can grip it without slipping. Animals love to knock over birdbaths. Because of this, they tend to break so you may want to just buy a top. Simply place the top on the ground. The birds are used to drinking on the ground (puddles, ponds, etc.) and they would probably rather come to a bath that's low. One more thing to keep in mind is that algae will form in your birdbath during hot weather. There isn't much that you can do about it. Try to scrub it out with a good stiff brush. Don't start going nuts by using all kinds of cleaners. The algae won't hurt the birds, but your cleaners might. So when you are choosing a birdbath, pick one that is fairly shallow and rough on the inside. Remember to keep the water clean and fresh. Or better yet, get your wife that hot tub and share your cold glass of iced tea with the birds."

September, 2003


CLEAN THE TOUCHPADS ON STOVES OR MICROWAVE OVENS

Warm a little vinegar (don't make it hot) and clean using a soft cloth (not paper toweling). Don't use too much liquid here it could possibly short out the unit.

September, 2003


GROWING TOMATOES INDOORS (Malcom Garvock)

You'll need to pollinate the tomatoes (unless you have bees in your home). Take a small paint brush and stick it down into the blossom and turn it slightly. Go to the next blossom and do the same thing going back and forth to spread the pollen. As new blossoms form continue to re-pollinate. Fertilize regularly with a liquid fertilizer with numbers like 15-30-15. Use grow lights, keep them very close to the plant as they grow so they don't get "leggy" and raise them as the plant grows. Keep the lights on for about 16 hours a day.

September, 2003


CHIMNEY HINTS

Have your chimney cleaned at least once a year. If you use it regularly, twice a year. Burn hard woods like hickory, maple, oak, apple or cherry wood. Birch will flame up because of the oils, so be careful. Don't burn soft woods and never things like pallets or old wooden crates; these will give off a lot of creosote. Potato peels dried til firm and burned a handful at a time a few times a week or the creosote logs sold commercially will help remove the creosote from the chimney.

November, 2003


MAKE SCREWING THE LIGHTBULB EAISER (Murray Gula, The "Home Improvement Doctor)

To make it easier to screw in or out, just apply a thin film of Vaseline to the threads of the light bulb.

November, 2003


FORMING DOUGH INSIDE SMALL MUFFIN TINS
If your nails are too long or knuckles too large to shape the dough in small muffin tins for making mini-tarts for example, use the cork from a bottle of champagne. It will easily stamp the dough out in a uniform thickness.

November, 2003


HOW TO MAKE CANDLES DRIP LESS WHEN BURNING

Put your candles in the freezer for several hours to overnight before lighting them and it will prevent excessive dripping.

December, 2003


HOW TO UNSTICK MARSHMALLOWS IN A BAG

Add confectioners sugar or cornstarch and shake it up in the bag (that dries them out a little bit) and you can pull them apart. Some of them may still be stuck, but you pull or cut them apart by hand. The next time you purchase a bag of marshmallows, take them out of the bag and put them in a freezer-safe container and freeze.

December, 2003


TO KEEP LITTLE CHILDREN PRE-OCCUPIED AT AN ADULT PARTY

Set up a table for the kids with cardboard, crafts and crayons etc. and have them make gifts or greeting cards.

December, 2003


WHEN YOU WANT TO "SOUR" SOME MILK FOR A RECIPE

Add 4 tablespoons of vinegar for a quart of milk and mix well. Let stand for 5-10 minutes.

January, 2004


ROASTED CHESTNUTS IN THE MICROWAVE OVEN

Buy the Italian chestnuts (they work well in the microwave). Punch a hole in the large round end of the nuts to vent. Cook about 1 minute on high. Remove carefully and shell them. Dip in garlic butter.

January, 2004


ROTATING AND FLIPPING A MATTRESS TO DISTRIBUTE THE WEAR AND TEAR (Bob Allison)

Your top mattress will last longer if you perform simple maintenance on it. Picture the top left corner of your mattress and make it the number 1. Every 3 months you will make the adjustment. The first rotation is to move the #1 to the bottom, top-right side of your bed. The next move, three months later, is to flip the mattress over so the #1 is now underneath on the bottom side of the bottom left. Next time, you rotate the mattress so #1 is now on the top-right side (still underneath). Flip mattress over so the #1 is back where it began (top-left). Repeat every three months.

February, 2004


WINDOW WASHING SOLUTION

Mix a bucket of warm water and 1 c. of window washing fluid for your car. Apply with old towels or rags. and dry with a clean towel or rag.

February, 2004


TIGHTEN LIDS OR CAPS EASIER (Barbara)

Use a pair of rubber gloves to tighten or loosen you lids and caps. These are the same gloves you use to wash your dishes.

March, 2004


DON'T CORE OR PARBOIL YOUR CABBAGE (Joan's)

Freeze the cabbage a day ahead of making stuffed cabbage. Remove and thaw in a colander (about 4 hours). You don't have to core or par-boil the cabbage.

March, 2004


RAW EGG SUBSTITUTES

COOKING WHOLE EGGS FOR USE IN RECIPES - As a nutritious combination of egg whites and yolks, whole eggs should be fully cooked for assured safety in recipes that call for raw or lightly cooked eggs. The following method can be used with any number of eggs and works for a variety of recipes.
In a heavy saucepan, stir together the eggs and either sugar, water or other liquid from the recipe (at least 1/4 c. sugar, liquid or a combination per egg). Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until the egg mixture coats a metal spoon with a thin film or reaches 160°. Immediately place the saucepan in ice water and stir until the egg mixture is cool. Proceed with the recipe.

COOKING EGG YOLKS FOR USE IN RECIPES - Because egg yolks are a fine growth medium for bacteria, cook them for use in mayonnaise, Hollandaise sauce, Caesar salad dressing, chilled soufflés, chiffons, mousses and other recipes calling for raw egg yolks. The following method can be used with any number of yolks.
In a heavy saucepan, stir together the egg yolks and liquid from the recipe (at least 2 tablespoons liquid per yolk). Cook over very low heat, stirring constantly, until the yolk mixture coats a metal spoon with a thin film, bubbles at the edges or reaches 160°. Immediately place the saucepan in ice water and stir until the yolk mixture is cool. Proceed with the recipe.

COOKING EGG WHITES FOR USE IN RECIPES - Cooking egg whites before use in all recipes is recommended for full safety. The following method can be used with any number of whites and works for chilled desserts as well as Seven-Minute Frosting, Royal Icing and other frosting recipes calling for raw egg whites.
In a heavy saucepan, the top of a double boiler or a metal bowl placed over water in a saucepan, stir together the egg whites and sugar from the recipe (at least 2 T. sugar per white), water (1 t. per white) and cream of tartar (1/8 t. per each 2 whites). Cook over low heat or simmering water, beating constantly with a portable mixer at low speed, until the whites reach 160°. Pour into a large bowl. Beat on high speed until the whites stand in soft peaks. Proceed with the recipe.
Note that you must use sugar to keep the whites from coagulating too rapidly. Test with a thermometer as there is no visual clue to doneness. If you use an unlined aluminum saucepan, eliminate the cream of tartar or the two will react and create an unattractive gray meringue. Making an Italian meringue by adding hot sugar-syrup to egg whites while beating them does not bring the egg whites to much above 125° and is not recommended except for dishes that are further cooked. If, however, you bring the sugar-syrup all the way to the hardball stage (250°-266°), the whites will reach a high enough temperature. You can use a sugar-syrup at hardball stage for divinity and similar recipes.

ALTERNATIVES FOR RAW EGG WHITES - You can use pasteurized, dried or refrigerated liquid egg whites. Egg substitutes often contain gums and/or added salt, which can hamper foaming.
Pasteurized,dried and liquid egg whites on the retail market either contain no other ingredients - for recipes where little foaming is required - or contain only a whipping agent - for recipes that require a stable foam. Follow package directions to substitute dried or refrigerated liquid egg whites for raw egg whites or use about 2 T. water and 2 t. dried egg white or 2-3 T. liquid egg white for each large egg white.

USING PASTEURIZED SHELL EGGS - Pasteurized shell eggs are heat-treated to destroy any bacteria, should they be present, and are especially suitable for preparing egg recipes that are not fully cooked, but may also be used for other recipes including baked goods. The heating process may create cloudiness in the whites and increase the beating time needed for foam formation. When you separate pasteurized shell eggs for beating, allow up to about four times as much time for full foam formation to occur in egg whites as you would for the whites of regular eggs. Prepare other recipes as usual. You can keep pasteurized shell eggs refrigerated for at least 30 days from the pack date (a three-digit number on the short side of the carton which represents the day of the year, with 1 = January 1 and 365 = December 31), but do not freeze them.
If pasteurized shell eggs are not available in your area, use the cooking methods outlined above or, in place of raw egg whites, use pasteurized, dried or liquid egg whites.

Information provided courtesy of The American Egg Board, where you can find additional information on the subject of egg safety www.aeb.org.

April, 2004


DRINKING MILK FROM THE CARTON AFFECTS STORAGE LIFE (Dr. Myles Bader)

Even if you live alone and no one else drinks from the carton, the bacteria you deposit into the carton will cause the milk to sour faster and shorten the storage life of the milk.

May, 2004


WATER PLANTS WHILE OFF ON VACATION (Gray's Greenhouse)

Arrange the plants to be watered in one area in a circle. Fill a 5 gallon bucket with water and place the bucket on a stand (the water bucket will need to be above the plant containers). Tie cotton strings around a brick and place in the water bucket (one strand for each plant and long enough to reach the bottom of each plant container). Using a pencil, push a hole to the base of the plant containers and place each strand of string into the hole and tap it together to seal.
Note: Only use cotton string. One (5 gallon) bucket of water will water 20 plants for two weeks.

June, 2004


Name: April
City: Vancouver
State/Province BC
Country: Canada

Comment: I found your site via Safari when I was searching for a home remedy to untarnish a necklace I have. So far it's working!
I saw one for softening brown sugar, but I have an easier remedy; put a piece of apple in the bag of brown sugar overnight. The next day, it'll be like the day you bought it.
Thank you,
April

This is for the web site! Thanks April. Bob & Rob.

TO PREVENT BOTTOM CRUST FROM BECOMING SOGGY (Gloria Pitzer)

Partially bake pie shell at 375° for 6 minutes if using a filling that must later be baked, but at 375° for 8-10 minutes or til golden brown if using a filling that does not require baking. Either way you will remove from oven after the appropriate baking time and brush or wipe entire surface of warm crust with light Karo syrup. Return to the 375° oven for about 3-5 minutes or til it begins to sizzle and turn golden when using either baked or unbaked filling. When using the filling that requires baking, add filling to the crust coated in Karo, baked as directed above. Continue to bake filling per filling recipe. Add unbaked filling to the crust with the Karo applied to it and baked as directed above. Then it is best to keep refrigerated. Keebler's shortbread crumb crust can be used instead of a homemade crust for either baked or unbaked filling with directions as given above. Even during baking the crumb crust with the Karo application, it will not affect the crust nor cause it to over-brown. The baked-on Karo application will prevent the crust from becoming soggy during baking or during refrigeration of an unbaked filling.

July, 2004


MAKE SELF-RISING FLOUR

2 c. flour
1 t. baking soda
2 t. baking powder
1 t. salt

Mix ingredients together.

MAKE CAKE FLOUR

Take 1 c. unsifted flour, remove 2 T. of the flour and add 2 T. corn starch. Sift 3 times.

August, 2004


COOK FISH IN A MICROWAVE OVEN (Frank Atwood)

If your fish averages 1/2 inch thick, you can cook it 2 1/2 minutes at 70% power; 3/4 inch thick will cook 2 3/4 minutes at 70% and 1 inch for 3 minutes at 70%. Turn the fish over and repeat. The fish is done when it flakes easily. The fish remains moist.

September, 2004


FOR EVEN COOKING OF FISH FILLETS (Frank Atwood)

Fish fillets often have a thick part and a thin part to them. To ensure even cooking of the entire fillet, Frank suggests that you "curl" the thin side underneath the fillet to even out the thickness. Then go ahead and bake or broil the fish. This will even out both sides and will promote the same doneness at both ends of the fillet.

September, 2004


REMOVE SALTINESS FROM HAM SLICES (Dr. Myles Bader)

If your ham slices are too salty, try placing them in a dish of low-fat milk for 20 minutes, rinse them off in cold water and dry with paper towels before you cook them. The ham will not pick up the taste of the milk.

For Information on ordering Dr. Bader's books call toll free: 1-888-767-5755.

October, 2004


SOUP SECRETS (From 21st Century Reference Guide To Cooking Secrets & Helpful Household Hints By Dr. Myles Bader)

Always make soup at least one day ahead of time, so that the seasonings have time to improve the flavor.

Never use salt or pepper to season soups til you are almost finished with the cooking process. Both of these seasonings will intensify and may give the soup too strong a flavor.

When cooking soup, always cook with the lid on to help the flavors become better absorbed.

When you make cold soup, remember that cold soup needs more seasoning than hot soup. The heat tends to drive the flavors into the product more efficiently (www.souprecipes.com).

To make clear noodle soup, cook the noodles, then drain before adding them to the soup. When noodles are cooked in the soup, the excess starch will turn the soup cloudy.

Don't use dark-colored bones when making soup. They are probably too old and have deteriorated.

When preparing vegetable soup only pour enough water into the pot to cover the vegetables by two inches. Too much water makes the soup too thin.

Instead of sugar to give your soup or stew a sweeter taste, try adding a small amount of pureed carrots.

If you overdo the garlic, just place a few parsley flakes in a tea ball to soak up the excess garlic. Garlic tends to be attracted to parsley.

November, 2004


SUGGESTION FOR PUMPKIN PIE WITH A SOGGY CRUST

Start baking at 400° for 10 minutes then lower the temperature to whatever your regular recipe calls for the remaining baking time. Check after half the baking time to see if you need to wrap foil around the edge of the crust to prevent over baking.

December, 2004


SUGGESTIONS FOR WINTERIZING YOUR HOME BEFORE GOING SOUTH (D.T.E.)

Set your thermostat back to 55°-60°. Rule of thumb is, for every degree you turn back, you save 3% on your bill.

Set your water heater back to "warm".

Leave a little tiny drip going in one sink.

Drain and shut off water spigots on the outside of your home.

Disconnect the hose on your sump-pump.

Lock windows and attach storms.

January, 2005


TIPS ON PORK CHOPS

Try adding a little butter and a half can of Vernor's to baked pork chops. The Vernor's tenderizes the pork and adds a great ginger-caramel flavor to them.

March, 2005


KITCHEN DRAIN MAINTENANCE (Murray Gula)

1 c. table salt
1 c. baking soda
1/4 c. creme of tartar

Mix ingredients. Once a month, pour about 1/4 c. of the mixture down the drain with 2 c. boiling water. Let sit 4-5 minutes and then run the water to rinse out the drain.

Murray is our "Home Improvement Doctor" heard each Friday at 10:30 A.M.. He's also on WJR (760 AM) Saturday and Sunday.

April, 2005


FREEZING CAKE

Cut the cake into slices and place on paper plates. Freeze in the freezer. Remove and wrap in plastic wrap, then in foil. Date them before storing in the freezer. Pull from freezer when you start making dinner and the slices will be thawed when you're ready for dessert.

May, 2005


KEEP TURKEY BURGERS MOIST

Add 1 t.-1 T. olive oil to the burgers before shaping into patties. It's a healthy way to lard them.

June, 2005


USING BRONZE WOOL INSTEAD OF STEEL WOOL (From Dr. Myles Bader, for information on his books call, 1 (888) 767-5735

If rusting is a concern when working on a project, try using bronze wool, which is available at most hardware or marine supply houses. Bronze wool will not rust so the small slivers that end up sticking to your project will not have a rust problem.

July, 2005


CLEAN STUFFED ANIMALS (from Sheri Coleman)

Place item in a pillowcase and tie shut (do not tie so tight that you will be unable to get it undone!) Wash in cold, gentle cycle and tumble dry on low. Works GREAT!!!!

August, 2005


CLEANING COFFEE POTS (Rita's)

Dissolve 1 oz. of citric acid in 4 c. of hot water. Add 4 cups of cold water to the solution. Pour solution into the water section of your machine. Turn on your coffee maker (no filter) and let about half the solution run through. Stop the machine and let it sit for 20 minutes. Start it up again and let the rest of the cleaning solution go through. Rinse everything out by running 8 cups of cold, fresh water through your machine at least 4 times.

Tips: you can get citric acid at your grocery store, in the canning section. You can scale down the amount of cleaning solution for smaller coffee makers. Clean your coffee maker once a month.

September, 2005


REMOVE GREASE STAINS ON DRIVEWAY (Jake's)

Squirt some Dawn dish liquid on the stain. Our caller just left it there til the rain washed it away.

October, 2005


THE THREE "T's" Of Brewing Coffee (Bunn Coffee Maker Company)

TIME: The coffee should have run through the coffee maker in 3-4 minutes for a 10-12 cup brew.
TEMPERATURE: 200° give or take 5°.
TURBULENCE: Keep the sprayer in the coffee maker clean so it can dispense the spray of water evenly. Use high quality filters.

Note: Drink the coffee in about 20 minutes for the best flavor profile. After that it starts downhill both in flavor and nutrients! Store whole beans in an air-tight container for up to 4 weeks.

November, 2005


PARAFFIN WAX IN CHOCOLATE (From Lorna's Cake and Candy Supply, Allen Park, Mi.)

Paraffin wax is a by-product of petroleum. It's pretty much made of the same thing your car tires are made of. There IS an edible version, but it's still not digestible (it's considered edible because it's more refined) It passes right through your digestive system. There is speculation that it causes intestinal problems later, however. If these people are wanting to make "buckeyes" with chocolate chips and wax, it would be to their advantage to buy summer coating (sold in cake and candy supply stores). Much less mess and much better tasting finished product, not to mention none of the worry about future consequences of using wax.

December, 2005


HELP FOR REMOVING ODORS AND CAT OR DOG URINE:

Call the 'Odor Doctor" at AtmosKlear odor eliminator. The toll free number is: 1-800-977-4145.

January, 2006


REMOVE ODOR AND SHARPEN THE BLADES OF YOU KITCHEN DISPOSAL

Run ice cubes and a few drops of liquid dish washing detergent through the disposal with cold water. You can also run lemon peel through to help remove odors or make "AtmosKlear ice cubes". Fill an ice cube tray with AtmosKlear odor eliminator and freeze to cubes (remember to label the tray). Run a few cubes through the disposal with a few drops of dish liquid and cold water.

January, 2006


SHELL PECANS EASILY

Freeze first. This shrinks nut away from shell.

February, 2006


SORE THROAT AND SINUS REMEDY (One of our listeners called this in for Bob!)

Pour 1 T. honey into a shot glass and warm it in the microwave oven for 7-9 seconds (this depends on the power of your microwave). Add 1/4 t. dark cinnamon and stir. Drink this once a day for 3 days.

February, 2006


HINT FOR CAMPER COOKING

Brown the hamburger and onion together that you will be using in sloppy Joe's etc. Drain the grease, pack in plastic bags and freeze. When it's time to go camping, use these frozen bags as ice in your cooler and by the time they thaw you will be ready to use them.

March, 2006


REMOVE WALLPAPER GLUE (From Joe in West Bloomfield)

Mix Dawn dish washing liquid with warm/hot water. Sponge it on and leave it for 5-10 minutes; then use a putty knife to scrape off the glue. It comes off easily, but make sure to put down paper, plastic or old carpet (it is messy). Then with the same solution you can sponge off the thin residue that is left. You'll wind up with a cleanly stripped wall. Joe said: "don't know why it works, but it does. Learned this from an old friend who is a painting contractor. Hope this helps".

March, 2006


KEEP DEER FROM PLANTS (E-Mailed to us from Dori Cohen, Duncan, B. C., Canada)

A sure fire way to keep the deer away from the roses, hydrangias, hostas and other plants: mix 2 eggs and water in an old spray bottle , let it sit in the sun for a while and then spray your plants with it. The deer do not like the smell (neither do I), but it keeps them away and keeps your flowers blooming. It does not harm the plants.

April, 2006


HOW TO STOP "WATER HAMMER" IN YOUR HOME (From Murray Gula "The Home Improvement Doctor"-Heard Friday's at 10:30 A.M.)

1. Turn off the main water supply to the home.
2. Open all faucets and fixtures (including toilets and outside faucets) to drain water.
3. Close the valves behind the toilets, sinks and showers.
4. Turn main water back on.
5. Slowly turn on each valve, one at a time, throughout the home.

April, 2006


STAIN REMOVER (from Linda Durell, Monroe, Mi.)

Some one was looking for a good stain remover the other day. I have had fantastic results using Dawn Direct Foam dish soap. I had a sweat shirt covered with set-in grease and it got out every bit. Since then I've used it on several things and never had any problems. I tried this because someone told me the best thing to use for stains on clothes was dish soap and believe me, they were right. After all, it is made to take care of food and grease.

May, 2006


COOKIES SPREADING TOO THIN

Cookies that spread too thin are caused by using too much shortening, too much liquid, use of extra-large eggs or too little flour. Don't forget to use dry measures for dry ingredients and liquid measures for liquid ingredients.

May, 2006


CLEAN GRILL GRATES (Pam's)

Place grate in a tub or sink and cover with hot, HOT water. Sprinkle 1/2 c. electric dishwasher detergent over the grate. Add 1-2 c. ammonia. Grab some old fabric softener sheets and try to cover the top of the grate. Soak over-night and give it a good scrub the next day.
Note: wear gloves because this can burn your bare hands.

June, 2006


HOME REMEDY FOR A BURNT-ON POT

Put hot water in the pot, add a tablet of denture cleaner and let sit overnight.

July, 2006


CLEAN THE OVEN DOOR WINDOW

Make a paste of baking soda and white vinegar. Apply to the oven window and let stand a couple of hours. Wipe off with a damp cloth. If the window is still dirty...make a paste of electric dishwasher detergent and water and repeat as before. If using the detergent wear rubber gloves.

August, 2006


CLEAN OUT CLOUDY VASES

Use full-strength white vinegar; pour into vase and let stand for about an hour then "swish" and rinse with clear water. If you don't have a brush to fit inside the vase, add some uncooked rice (tablespoon or two - depending on the size of the vase) and "shake" with the vinegar to get the cloudiness out of some of the hard-to-get-at places inside of the vase. The vinegar (and rice) can be re-used until it looks "icky"! She could also try the commercial product "CLR".

September, 2006


TO CLEAN A CLOUDY VASE WITH A SMALL OPENING

Dampen the inside of the vase and add any toilet bowl cleaner. Let stand for 10 minutes and it will all disappear.

September, 2006


TO TOAST COCONUT

IN THE OVEN: Place the shredded coconut on a baking sheet. Optionally toss with 1-2 T. of confectioners sugar if coconut is unsweetened. Bake in a preheated 350° oven, stirring every 30 seconds, til the coconut is dry and mostly toasted light brown with some white shreds (about 2-4 minutes).

IN THE MICROWAVE: Spread coconut evenly on microwave-safe plate. Optionally toss with 1-2 T. of confectioners sugar if coconut is unsweetened. Microwave on high at 30 second intervals and toss til lightly browned with some white shreds.

October, 2006


REMOVE CANDLE WAX FROM A BRICK FIREPLACE (Elaine Grandolfi)

" I had the problem of how to get candle wax off a brick fireplace. Well I tried both Goo Gone and WD-40 and let it sit. Then I took a paint scraper, covered the blade with a slightly damp cloth and scraped. It worked...and didn't leave a stain!"

November, 2006


WAYS TO CELEBRATE SPECIAL EVENTS (E-mailed to us by a listener)

We celebrated my parents' 65th wedding anniversary by renting a limo and taking them down memory lane. They have lived in several cities in the metro area and also owned Sherwood Cleaners on Fenkell near Livernois in Detroit. Our whole family piled into the limo and had them driven past all of their fond memories . . . and just let them tell us all about them. They are in their 80's and they loved reliving all of the days gone by. We ended up going for a nice dinner at the end of the trip. Maybe this will give someone else an idea of a way to celebrate a special day.

December, 2006


CLEAN STAINLESS STEEL DRIP PANS ON YOUR RANGE

Soak the drip pans and oven racks in a laundry tub of hot water and 3-4 c. ammonia overnight. Scrub the next day with SOS pads to clean. Another caller said you could soak them inside a large, heavy-duty plastic bag if you don't have the tub or the odor of the ammonia is too much for you. She says to be very careful, however, not to tear the plastic.

January, 2007


REMOVING KETCHUP FROM CARPET

. Carefully remove excess from carpet, then rub glycerin into the stain. Sponge with warm water trying not to wet the carpet too much.

February, 2007


TO KEEP POTATOES FROM TURNING BLACK

1 c. water
1/2 t. cream of tartar

Dissolve in a large bowl, add shredded potatoes and stir to coat. Drain the liquid but don't rinse. You can keep the potatoes for a day.

March, 2007


HOME MADE LIQUID SOAP

3/4 c. dry soap scraps broken into 1 inch pieces
1-3 c. hot water

In a blender, reduce the soap pieces to a coarse powder. Any pieces larger then 1 inch should be smashed with a hammer before blending. Put powder in a non-aluminum pan. Add 1 1/2 c. hot water and bring to the boil. Stir and simmer, uncovered, for about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and continue stirring to cool mixture. Add more liquid if necessary.

April, 2007


CLEAN KITCHEN SINK (Clay, our own plumber)

Not long ago a listener called in with a stopped-up kitchen sink problem. Clay, one of our neighbors that owns a plumbing company, called in with this answer. Go the value way first...use a plunger! If it doesn't work, call a plumber. Hint: run the water on your disposal for 1 minute after grinding so it can carry the debris to the pipes.

May, 2007


SUMMER SALAD TIPS (From www.perfectentertaining.com)

Summer just begs for simple salads for side dishes or as the main attraction. Most salads require little or no cooking - or if they do require cooking it can be done well ahead of time when it is cooler outside. The wide range of fresh produce that is available is never better - and the prices are their lowest while the quality is usually at its highest. Here are a few of our favorite salad tips:

When making a salad, check what is on sale and what looks best when you are out shopping. Almost all salad recipes can be modified to incorporate different ingredients so don't be afraid to mix and match ingredients.

Consider blanching raw vegetables for 30 seconds to a minute before adding to the salad. Everything from carrots to broccoli really benefits from this. The vegetables are still crisp, but have more color and moisture and seem to absorb the flavors of the dressing better when they have been blanched. Peas, snow peas, beans, cauliflower and squash also are better when blanched slightly before adding to the salad. Make sure to place the blanched vegetables immediately in ice water to stop the cooking process once their color has brightened.

For nicer presentation, always mix your salad in one bowl and then transfer it to a serving bowl. This allows you to have plenty of room to mix your salad.

Consider placing your salad in a bowl that can easily be nested in another bowl or decorative container, especially for pot lucks or outdoor dinners. Fill the larger bowl partway with ice and the salad will stay cool and safe much longer.

Even a simple garnish helps make a salad special. Consider sprinkling on some paprika, chopped parsley, chervil, chives or other fresh herbs, diced red onions, diced olives, diced meats, diced peppers, toasted chopped nuts, sliced mushrooms or other ingredients. Don't forget the standbys of sliced pepper rings, hardboiled egg slices or sliced pickles.

If you are making a pasta or potato salad ahead of time and it seems like the amount of dressing is perfect, thin it with a little milk, water, oil or other liquid ingredient used in the dressing or add another 1/4 recipe of the dressing to the salad. Potato salads especially are notorious for soaking up dressing and drying out when stored for any length of time.

Add some crunch to your salad with sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, cooked bacon, toasted nuts, ramen noodles, chow mein noodles, crumbled tortilla or potato chips, crushed croutons or French fried onions. To make sure these ingredients stay crunchy, add them right before serving.

The plated salad is back! They are easy on the hostess and make a distinctive course for more formal dinners. Any salad can be served on a plate, either by serving the salad directly on the plate or in a slice of melon, half of a pear or peach, in a decorative lettuce leaf, on half of a muffin, in a tortilla cup, a hollowed out pepper, halved cucumber or any of a variety of decorative touches that you think will blend well with your salad.

Don't be afraid to substitute low fat ingredients in most salad recipes. Low fat sour cream and mayonnaise can be substituted for the full fat versions and fat-free plain yogurt can also be used for either in most recipes with excellent results. Consider using half regular and half low fat ingredients for the perfect balance of taste and health. For oil based dressings, consider using mild rice vinegar in place of all or part of the vinegar in the dressing and half of the oil. Chicken or vegetable broth also makes a great substitute for part or all of the oil in many dressings. Also don't be afraid to use your favorite fat-free or low fat bottled dressing in place of a homemade dressing on a salad if you think it will taste good.

June, 2007


STRAWBERRY TIP (from E-mailer Mickey)

Since it is Michigan strawberry pickin' time, I have a wonderful tip to pass along for cleaning strawberries. My lovely daughter-in-law dropped off a tray of strawberries last night, that she picked for me, along with a tip for removing the stems. I used this method to stem the berries and wish to pass it along for those of you that have never heard of this. After washing your berries, take a wide plastic straw and insert into the bottom of the strawberry and push the stem out. It is so easy and it removes the core as well. Now all I have to do is make the freezer jam. Oh, so good!

July, 2007


SIGNS THAT A ROOF NEEDS TO BE REPAIRED (Murray Gula)

A roof should be inspected every 15 years. If shingles start to cup or curl or if you get up in the gutter and you start to see a lot of granules in the gutter or coming out through the downspout, that is a sure sign that the roof needs replacing.

Note: our "Home Improvement Doctor" is heard every Friday at 10:30 AM. You can hear Murray Gula on Sat. & Sun. Mornings from 8-10 AM on WDFN, 1130 AM and on the internet at www.wxyz.com on Thurs. at noon.

July, 2007


TO PURIFY YOUR KITCHEN SPONGES (Tom Preston, Towne Center Financial Services)

Put your wet sponges in the microwave on high for 15 seconds. Be careful when removing the sponge, it will be very hot!

August, 2007


KILLING OFF WEEDS (From Dory)

A neighbor called to say she sprays the weeds with white vinegar to kill them. $1.87 for vinegar vs. $6.00 for the Roundup was her comment. We had a follow-up call from another neighbor 2 days later and he said he tried it and it worked wonderfully!

September, 2007


INEXPENSIVE ALARM SYSTEM

Put your car keys beside your bed at night. If you hear a noise outside your home or someone trying to get in your house, just press the panic button for your car. The alarm will be set off and the horn will continue to sound until either you turn it off or the car battery dies. And remember to carry your keys while walking to your car in a parking lot. The alarm can work the same way there.

September, 2007


FREEZING POTATOES

Raw potatoes turn soft in the freezer. Freeze only cooked potatoes and re-heat them straight from the freezer. This will prevent them from becoming grainy and watery after freezing. They will want to fall apart and are best used for making potato cakes or hash browns.

October, 2007


TIP FOR PAINT ODOR (E-mailed from Sherry)

I Just listened to the lady with the popcorn odor left in her kitchen. A neighbor got this answer from a painter she had hired. Put some vinegar in a pan and let it simmer. It will get rid of paint odor and other smells and it works great! I usually use the cider vinegar, but don't know if it makes a difference between that and the white vinegar. Great show!

November, 2007


REMOVE INDENTATIONS IN CARPETING

THE HOT WAY:
Hold a steam iron about 1 inch over the indentation and press the steam into the indentation several times (do not let the iron touch the fibers of the carpet!). This will loosen up the fibers. Brush. Repeat if necessary.

THE COLD WAY:
Put an ice cube (or a small piece of ice) into the indentation and let it sit overnight. Blot up with white paper towel. Brush it out.

A word of caution - if you get the carpet too wet you risk bringing up a stain from the padding below. Be sure it's a very small piece of ice that would equal only a few drops of water. As a matter of fact, one of our listeners uses tap water instead of the ice and lets it stand overnight before brushing it out the next day. She said to repeat if necessary.

December, 2007


EASY WAY TO ROLL OUT PIE CRUST

Roll out between two pieces of waxed paper or between two sheets of plastic wrap. Peel off top sheet and "flop" it into the pie tin. May store it in refrigerator overnight on a dinner plate for additional flakiness. Dough hits cardboard stage the more liquid you put in. Use a blender to mix ingredients for dough til it forms a sandy look, then add water and blend. Do not use butter at room temperature, it should be chilled.

December, 2007


REMOVE CAT URINE IN CARPET

Use a combination of a vinegar/water mixture and an orange oil cleaner. Orange oil and vinegar neutralize odors. Then after a month of cleaning the area on a weekly basis and using the spray, start using Fabreeze on it. Don't get the carpet wet or you may bring up a stain from the padding! Use a slightly dampened cloth.

January, 2008

 

PREVENT SOGGY PIE CRUSTS (Joe from Farmington Hills)

Bake the pie lower in the oven then you normally do. If you use the middle rack use the bottom one.

Virginia said: to brush a mixed egg on the bottom of your pie crust then bake it til it’s dry. Then add your filling and bake.

Another caller said: mix 2 T. flour with 1 T. sugar and rub into the lower crust before adding your fruit. (For fruit pies).

Another neighbor gave the following information:
1. Don’t use shiny metal pans, use a dull one.
2. You may be using too much water in the recipe. Back down on the amount of water.
3. Your temperature may be too low. Get an oven thermometer to check the true temperature in your oven.

Olga said: add a bit of heated apricot jam as a glaze on the bottom of the crust before adding the filling. Also, pierce with a fork (dock) and then place a layer of foil over a raw pie crust and place some sinker weights in it. Bake 375° for 15 minutes to pre-bake the crust. Remove weights and foil, dock the crust once more and bake for another 5 minutes.

February, 2008

 

SPREADING COOKIE TIPS

1.) If the oven isn't up to temperature it will cause spreading. When the oven says it's reached desired temperature let it preheat for 5 minutes more.

2.) Use the plain aluminum pans instead of the non-stick coated ones.

3.) Add a little bit more flour to the recipe to thicken it up.

March, 2008

 

CHI-CHI AND THE GREEK VINTAGE CLOTHING

This is the link to the vintage clothing store we talked about Friday morning 3/28/08. chichiandthegreek.com They buy and sell vintage clothing, old perfumes, furs, jewelry and art. They are located in Waterford Mi. and can be reached for private appointments as well.

April, 2008

 

POLISH BRASS (Tom Boaks)

Cut a lemon in half and pour some kosher salt into the cut end. Rub that end on the brass adding more salt if necessary. Rinse and dry. You can spray it lightly with a clear lacquer spray to protect the brass if you want. He also uses a product called Never-Dull. It is like a wadding.

May, 2008

 

PLANTING TOMATOES (Don Juchartz "The Garden Doctor")

Plant tomatoes at least a couple of inches deeper in the ground then they were in the container you bought them. Plant them on a slant also, this gives you more roots. Don likes the Celebrity tomato best.

 

June, 2008

 

WATERING LAWNS (Don Juchartz "The Garden Doctor")

Don says you want 1 inch of water per week on your lawn. You can check this by buying a water gauge or just put a can that has been measured with a 1 inch mark on the lawn when you water. Time how long it takes for the water to fill to the mark and that is how long you need to water each week. You also want to check how deep the water has penetrated your lawn. You want 3-4 inches. If it is 2 inches that is not enough, you will need more than 1 inch of water on your lawn at a time. You may need 2 inches. Check this by taking a plug of soil at least 4 inches deep. 

June, 2008

 

FREEZE RASPBERRIES (Ruth Ann)

Rinse with cold water and let dry in a colander. Place in freezer boxes (so they don’t crush) and freeze.

August, 2008



BELLA’S BARBECUE SECRET

Bella likes to rub her ribs with kosher salt for 2 hours, let stand and then rinse the salt off. “You can cook the ribs any way you want after that” she says!

August, 2008


CANNING INFORMATION

Good food preservation methods can mean the difference between safe food and food borne illness. Food spoilage and food borne illness are caused by bacteria, yeasts and molds. These microorganisms are found everywhere. Food spoilage can also be caused by enzymes and chemical reactions in foods. Not all microorganisms cause food spoilage or food borne illness. In fact, we rely on some microorganisms to produce food product. For example, molds help us produce certain cheeses and soy sauce. Bacteria are used to make sauerkraut and other cheeses and yeast is used to make breads and wine. But when food is not properly cleaned, prepared and or preserved, the result may be food spoilage and result in food borne illness. And it is important to remember that pathogens do not always cause spoilage. There may not be any signs that a food is not safe to eat, so we must practice safe methods of preserving food. Canning can be a safe method of food preservation if practiced properly. Canning involves placing food in jars and heating to a temperature that destroys microorganisms that can be dangerous to one's health or cause food to spoil. During the canning process, air is forced out of the jars and a vacuum seal is formed during cooling. This vacuum seal prevents air and microorganisms from getting into the jars to contaminate the canned goods.

There are two safe methods of canning. Which method to use is dependent on the product being preserved. Boiling water bath canning can be safely used to can fruits, tomatoes, pickles, jams and jellies and other preserves.

These are foods that are high enough in acid that Clostridium botulinum spores cannot grow and produce toxin which can be deadly. With a boiling water bath, jars of high acid foods are heated by being completely submerged in boiling water. Pressure canning is the only safe method to can low acid foods. Low acid foods are defined as any product with a ph higher than 4.6. This would include vegetables, meats fish and poultry. Pressure canning processes foods with two to three inches of water in the bottom of a pressure canner which is then heated under pressure to at least 240°. Since this is above the boiling point of water, the only way to attain these temperatures is under pressure in a pressure canner.

Never taste food that was improperly canned. Low acid foods that were not canned under pressure or for long enough times can be extremely dangerous and even fatal.

I also run a food safety and preservation correspondence course that is seven lessons done at home that cover the basics of food safety, canning high and low acid foods, making jams and jellies, pickling, drying foods and freezing. If you are looking for more information (or different information) please feel free to give me a call.

Robin Danto
Extension Educator Food Safety and Nutrition
Michigan State University Extension, Oakland County
1200 N. Telegraph Road
Department 416
Pontiac, Michigan 48341
(248) 858-0904

September, 2008


HINTS FROM EATING YOUNGER NEWSLETTER

“Multigrain” means only that more than one grain is used in the bread. The primary ingredient is usually refined wheat flour which tells you that the bread is not considered whole grain.

Eat your fruit rather than drinking it. Whole fruits not only add vitamins and minerals, but also the bonus of fiber. The fiber will help you to feel full with fewer calories.

Older people may need to double their intake of vitamin D from 400 to 800 I.U. (from all sources.) A study of adults 60 and over found that 700 to 800 I.U. reduced risk of hip fractures by 26% and new vertebral fractures by 23%. Vitamin D may help prevent fractures by improving balance and muscle strength.

Losing weight seems to reduce heartburn because extra weight puts pressure on the abdomen. Ditto for smaller meals reducing heartburn.

A baked potato with skin has 4.6 grams of fiber. Not eating the skin means that you lose half of the fiber.

Cocoa powder, not chocolate, is one of the richest sources of flavonoids that help to improve insulin sensitivity. Dark chocolate has less of these compounds than cocoa and may provide risks for tooth decay and weight gain because of the fat and sugar content.

Rinsing canned tuna can remove 1/2 the salt. As for the mercury, young children and pregnant women or women who could become pregnant should follow the FDA recommendation: up to 12 oz. of tuna and other seafood a week. No more than 6 oz. of the tuna should be white tuna. The FDA has no restrictions for other people.

Eating Younger is a quarterly publication put out by Muriel Wagner a well known local registered dietician. For information on ordering call Dr. Muriel Wagner at: (248) 350-1190.

October, 2008


“DO NOT CALL” REGISTRY LIST PHONE NUMBER

Call this phone number to get on the “do not call” list. 1-888-382-1222.

October, 2008


REMOVE FRUIT FLIES (Emily)

Line a brown paper bag with a plastic bag and add a couple slices of banana. Crunch up the bags to about a 2 inch opening. Fold the bag tightly and dispose in the trash the next morning. This may take 2-3 days.

October, 2008


FREEZE CORN ON THE COB

Use high quality, mature corn. Husk and trim the ears. Remove the silk. Bring 8 qt. water to the boil. Blanch 5-6 ears at a time for 8 minutes (start time as they are submerged). Shock the ears in ice water afterwards to stop the cooking process. Drain and dry corn. Wrap each ear in freezer wrap or bags, removing as much air as possible. Date the bags and freeze for up to 3-6 months.

October, 2008


PEELING EGGS (Susan in NC)

For easy pealing of hard boiled eggs, put 1 t. of baking soda in the water you boil them in. Once they are cooked, crack and peel each end of eggs. The peel will come right off.

November, 2008


FOOD HOT LINES

Many counties in Michigan have an M.S.U. Extension Service office staffed by food specialists. Check your county listings in your telephone directory's government pages. Here are some metro-area office numbers:

Oakland County: (248) 858-0904, weekdays: 8:30-5
Macomb County: (586) 469-5060, Mon., Wed. and Fri.: 9-3
Washtenaw County: (734) 971-0079, weekdays: 8:30-5
Monroe County: (734) 243-7113, weekdays: 8:30-5
USDA meat and poultry hot line: 1-800-535-4555, weekdays: 10-4
Wayne and Livingston counties do not have a hot line.

November, 2008


CHRISTMAS IDEA FOR OUR TROOPS

When doing your Christmas cards this year, take one card and send it to this address. If we pass this on and everyone sends one card, think of how many cards these wonderful special people who have sacrificed so much would get.

A Recovering American Soldier
c/o Walter Reed Army Medical Center
6900 Georgia Avenue, NW
Washington, D.C. 20307-5001

November, 2008


CLEANING THE DISH WASHER HOSE (Louise)

Louise called us to say that she likes to pour 1/4 c. of regular household bleach on the bottom of my dishwasher once a week to keep the dishwasher hose clean.

November, 2008


FREEZE RASPBERRIES (Vicky)

Wash and dry as well as you can. Place on a cookie sheet and freeze. Transfer to plastic freezer bags and place in the freezer.

November, 2008


HOME MADE CLEANER FOR VEGGIES AND LETTUCE

Make a mixture consisting of equal amounts of white vinegar and water. Pour it into a spray bottle and spray veggies and lettuce. Let stand for 5 minutes and rinse well.

December, 2008


DID YOU KNOW? (From Barbara Murphy's BFF, Carolyn Martin, Decatur, GA.)

Peel a banana from the bottom and you won't have to pick the little stringy things' off of it. That's how the primates do it. Take your bananas apart when you get home from the store. If you leave them connected at the stem, they ripen faster.

Store your opened chunks of cheese in aluminum foil. It will stay fresh much longer and not mold!

Peppers with 3 bumps on the bottom are sweeter and better for eating.
Peppers with 4 bumps on the bottom are firmer and better for cooking.

Add a teaspoon of water when frying ground beef. It will help pull the grease away from the meat while cooking.

To really make scrambled eggs or omelets rich, add a couple of spoonfuls of sour cream, cream cheese, or heavy cream in and then beat them up.

Add garlic immediately to a recipe if you want a light taste of garlic and at the end of the recipe if your want a stronger taste of garlic.

Leftover snickers bars from Halloween make a delicious dessert. Simply chop them up with the food chopper. Peel, core and slice a few apples. Place them in a baking dish and sprinkle the chopped candy bars over the apples. Bake at 350° for 15 minutes! Serve alone or with vanilla ice cream.

Reheat Pizza: Heat up leftover pizza in a nonstick skillet on top of the stove, set heat to med-low and heat till warm. This keeps the crust crispy. No soggy micro pizza.

Easy Deviled Eggs: Put cooked egg yolks in a zip lock bag. Seal, mash till they are all broken up. Add remainder of ingredients, reseal, keep mashing it up mixing thoroughly, cut the tip of the baggy, squeeze mixture into egg. Just throw bag away when done for an easy clean up.

Reheating refrigerated bread: To warm biscuits, pancakes, or muffins that were refrigerated, place them in a microwave with a cup of water. The increased moisture will keep the food moist and help it reheat faster.

December, 2008


REMEDY FOR SORE THROAT

Make a mixture of 1-2 T. apple-cider vinegar with 8 oz. water. Sip it slowly. If you have a bad cough, try just sipping the vinegar straight.

December, 2008


PLUMPING RAISINS (P.J.'s)

Janet likes to plump her raisins in rum for the extra flavor. Put the raisins in a jar and cover them with rum over night. Drain the rum and enjoy.

December, 2008


A neighbor from Holly MI. E-mailed this in for our resident plumber Clay:

HOW TO CLEAN VELCRO

Hey Rob....Tell Clay to try "room temperature" duct tape to clean out his Velcro....just firmly press it into the Velcro...work it in for deep contact....and sha-zam....it is clean!

January, 2009


TIP FOR WASHING GREENS (Earnest Sanders)

Add salt to the wash water to add just a bit more abrasiveness. This will help get more sand and dirt off the greens quicker.

January, 2009


HEALTHIER BUTTER

1 stick softened butter (1/2 c.)
1/2 c. canola oil or olive oil

Beat together til blended. Refrigerate.

January, 2009


BUCKWHEAT IN PLACE OF RICE FOR CABBAGE ROLLS

We were asked for a buckwheat cabbage roll recipe and had 2 callers say they used their regular recipe and just substituted buckwheat for the rice. One caller uses raw buckwheat and will add more tomato juice to her recipe as the raw buckwheat absorbs the liquid. The second caller said she cooks the buckwheat before rolling the cabbage rolls.

February, 2009


TV CONVERTER BOX INFO

If you are having problems with your digital converter box call: 1-888-388-2572.

February, 2009


YEAST EQUIVALENTS DRY=CAKE

1 package of yeast is 2 1/4 t. = 1 cake of yeast which weighs 6/10 oz. Each works equally well in all recipes.

February, 2009


STORE CELERY

Remove celery from the plastic bag it came in from the store and wrap in aluminum foil. Store in the refrigerator.

March, 2009


STOP OR RECEIVE MORE JUNK MAIL

P.O. Box 643
Carmel, New York, 15012

Or: www.dmachoice.org

March, 2009


HINT FOR COOKING BEANS (Rosalyn)

Soak beans at least 8 hours. Changing the water every hour or two. Roz keeps the beans in a strainer to make the change of water easier. Do not add salt to the cooking water, put it in after cooking.

Rose called and said: Clean and sort the beans then wash them well. She puts lots of lukewarm water in the pot and soaks them overnight. She cooks them in the morning.

April, 2009


DRY MEAT, JUICES ON THE PLATE

Let your meat rest before carving it, the juices will re-absorb into the meat. The length of resting time depends on the weight of the meat. A sirloin steak may take 5-8 minutes; a turkey or roast up to 1/2 hour.

April, 2009


DON'T PLANT TOO EARLY (The Garden Doctor)

In the Detroit area the last average day for a killing freeze ends after May 10th. You may still experience freezing weather and need to bring delicate plants into the garage overnight. The safest time to plant in our area is Memorial Day weekend. You should check your plant beds soil for dryness by digging down and squeezing the soil to insure it is not wet. Take a handful of soil and squeeze it. When you open your hand up, if the ball of soil does not break down it is too wet. Don't plant yet. The ground needs to thaw out from winter and if it is too wet the plants will not grow properly.

May, 2009


HOME MADE TOPSY TURVEY TOMATO GROWER (Kathy)

You can make your own up-side-down tomato grower for much less money by placing the plants into the hanging plant containers you get at the garden or grocery store. Hang them on a Sheppard's Hook (Kathy says she uses one with 2 hooks attached on either side. As the plants grow they will grow up-side-down because she has not staked them and because of the weight of the plants. She says to grow cherry tomatoes as the larger tomatoes don't work as well.

May, 2009


ZIPPER REPAIR

Clean the zipper with vinegar. Rub some oil on it or spray with WD-40. Gently press on the wing areas on the left and right sides of the zipper with pliers (do not over-tighten).

May, 2009


OATMEAL AS A THICKENER OR TO EXTEND MEAT AS AN INGREDIENT (Gloria)

Add oatmeal to stews, chili or soup as a thickener near the end of the cooking process. Add oatmeal as a substitute to extend the amount of meat used in meatloaf or meatball recipes. You can use the oatmeal to substitute for the bread crumbs in the meatloaf and meatball recipes as well but you will need to run it through a food processor or blender first.

May, 2009


CLEANING THE FLOWER VASES (Gaye Tolliver)

Add some dry rice to whatever cleaner (bleach, vinegar, CLR etc.) you are using and agitate. Works like a charm in those small spaces!

June, 2009


CLEANING THE FLOWER VASES 2

Use electric washing machine detergent and very hot to boiling water. Let sit a few hours to overnight and wash them out. Rinse well.

August, 2009


YELLOWED LINENS (From a very old housekeeping book Millie has)

Yellowed linens can be bleached by letting them soak in buttermilk for 2-3 days. Our question is: is the buttermilk we get today the same as they had back in that day?

August, 2009


CLEANING SHEAR DRAPES (From Madelyn, one of our listeners who was a drape maker)

SHEAR DRAPES: Launder the drapes, they will come out better then if dry cleaned. Use cool/warm water setting and add Biz all fabric bleach to the water. Remove the hooks and note for replacement. Wash 1 panel at a time. Run on the delicate cycle (if they are very dirty you may have to wash twice). Place panel on a large beach towel which has been laid on the floor. and fan-fold the drape to restore the folds. Tie the top section into a “loose fold” with white yarn (this is so color does not bleed onto the drape), keeping all of the fan-folds together and straight down the length of the drape. Tie the middle of the drape next and then pull on the bottom to be sure all is straight. Hang the drape up wet. And air dry for 3-5 days.

Note: Gloria called in and said to note where the hooks are, you make a small mark with a ball point pen just under each hook before you remove them.

August, 2009


CLEAN SHEER CURTIANS (From Rita of Hazel Park)

To make laundered sheer curtains crisp again, fill a sink with cool water and mix in 1 cup of epsom salts and stir til completely dissolved. Then add the curtains and submerge them in this solution. When the curtains are completely saturated, remove them and, without wringing or twisting, hang to drip-dry. Now they are ready to go back on the curtain rods. Be sure to tuck this formula away in a convenient spot for the next time you launder those curtains.

September, 2009


LEFTOVER PORK ROAST IDEAS

Janet's: Saute some chopped onion and celery. Add cubed pork and gravy. Heat through to warm and add bean sprouts. Serve over rice. Add soy sauce at the table.

Olga's: Put pork, leftover carrots and potatoes in skillet. Add a can of mushrooms, tomato sauce and salsa for tang. Heat through. Add leftover noodles or serve over noodles.

Rob's: Thinly slice pork, Add slices to whole wheat pita bread with sliced cucumber, onion and tomato. Top with plain yogurt. Add crisp lettuce if desired.

Tom's: Slice pork 1/8 inch thin. In a long, sliced loaf, spread mayo and yellow mustard. Layer pickles. On the lower side layer pork, sliced ham and Swiss cheese. Close the sandwich. Place on a grill with a brick, covered with foil, laid on top to press. Grill til cheese is melted.

September, 2009


PRE-HOLIDAY TIP

A neighbor e-mailed this holiday tip to us: Hosting the family for the holiday? Before you do your Thanksgiving grocery shopping, take 15 minutes to clear old food out of your refrigerator. You're going to need plenty of refrigerator space for make-ahead dishes, and the inevitable, delectable, leftovers. In fact this is a good time to clear out all those old condiments you don't use, such as the no-fat, no-taste, salad dressing you wanted to try, and the horseradish you bought for a recipe two years ago.

October, 2009


TURKEY IN THE BROWN PAPER BAG TIP

You are getting ready to make your Thanksgiving Turkey with the old recipe that your mother used. The recipe has you place the bird into a paper bag and bake it. Now days you are not going to want to do this. Most brown bags that are provided by your local grocer are made from recycled paper products and may contain harmful chemicals. Instead, just run to the store and pick up a plastic baking bag that is designed specifically for this purpose.

October, 2009


CREDIT REPORT INFO

Equifax: 1-800-525-6285
For the Hearing impaired: 1-800-225-0056

Experian: 1-888-397-3742
Hearing impaired: 1-800-972-0322

Trans Union: 1-800-888-4213
Hearing impaired: 1-877-553-7803

Our suggestion is to start these programs four months apart. Three times a year you'll get a fresh report on your credit standing because they are required to send you a report once a year at no cost - Bob & Rob.

November, 2009


MAKING MASHED POTATOES AHEAD OF TIME (Theresa's)

If you find that you are going to be in a pinch for space while preparing your special meal, you can always prepare your mashed potatoes up to 2 hours ahead of time. When you have thoroughly prepared your potatoes and they are ready for serving, simply place them into a slow cooker and let them sit at the low setting for up to 2 hours. You can serve them right in the slow cooker to save dirtying any more dishes and they will stay toasty warm.

November, 2009


PREVENTING CHRISTMAS TREE DRYNESS (From Jerry Baker in the 80's)

4 T. bleach
2 c. Karo syrup
1 gal. warm water

Mix ingredients together and poor into tree stand. Saw off 1/4 inch of the bottom of the tree so you have a fresh cut. Pound around the bark for 6-8 inches to soften the trunk so it can absorb the mixture. Be careful not to spill the solution on carpet, etc. The bleach could remove color.

December, 2009


STORING CHRISTMAS LIGHTS

Save the cardboard tubes from paper towel rolls. Make a slit at the top of one end and put the plug inside the tube sliding the wire into the slit to hold it in place. Then wrap the lights all around the tube, tape the end and store in a bag or box, etc. To check lights the next year, just plug into an electric outlet before unraveling to see that all the lights are working.

January, 2010


OLD RADIO PROGRAM INFORMATION (E-Mailed From Mark In Trenton)

It was nice speaking with you yesterday regarding the old radio programs and places to find ways to acquire the old shows. The web site and company I mentioned was: www.otr.awardspace.com and the company was Radio Spirits, P.O. Box 3107, Wallingford, CT 06492 and their number is (203) 265-8044. Their customer service department is available from 8:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. E.T., Monday through Friday. I did find another company that has an 800 number to call to request a catalog. I have ordered from them in the past and have been very satisfied with the product. They have tapes and cd's. The company is called The Audio File and their address is Box 93, Glenview, IL 60025 and their number is 1-800-555-3179 and it is a 24 hour automated phone line. Again, it was wonderful to speak with you. Love the show - Mark.

January, 2010


CLEANING WITH VINEGAR (From: Vinegar By Vicki Lansky. Call 1-800-255-3379 for information)

For the shower head: pour 1/2 c. baking soda and 1 c. vinegar into a strong, sandwich-sized plastic bag (quart size if needed) and tie it onto and over a scummy shower head. Let this set for an hour after the bubbling has stopped. Remove the bag and then turn on the water. Hard water buildup will be gone and your shower head will sparkle again.

Saturate the grease-splattered window of an oven door with full strength white vinegar (let the door lie open) for 10-15 minutes before cleaning it with a scrub sponge.

Pour 1 c. vinegar into the dishwasher and run the empty machine through a whole cycle each month to get rid of soap buildup and odors.

Add 1/2 c. vinegar to the dishwasher rinse cycle to get dishes and glassware sparkling.

February, 2010


PERSPIRATION STAINS

Hyacinth called this one in:
Mix 4 T. bleach, 4 T. washing detergent and 1 qt. water. Bring to boil for 2 minutes stirring til dissolved. Add T-shirt and boil for 5 minutes. If stains are gone, launder as usual.

March, 2010


RETIREMENT INFO WEBSITE

This is the website that Tom Boaks from Towne Center Financial (800-574-9750) mentioned during "Your Money Matters" which is live M-T on our show from 9:00-9:30. The website Tom talked about was: www.paycheckforlife.org/ which is run by a group called Americans for secure retirement. If you don't go on-line you can call (202) 777-3562.

March, 2010


CHEESECAKE NOT SETTING UP PROPERLY (E-mailed from Chris in Allen Park)

Last week someone called about a cheesecake that would not set up in the fridge well. We had the same problem. If she is using Philly brand they changed it up on us! They have a whipped type in a tub, a regular in a tub and they now call them both a spread. We went back to the cream cheese in the brick form and it worked.

April, 2010


STERILIZE YOUR GARDEN SOIL BEFORE PLANTING (The Garden Doctor)

Don says "If you would like to sterilize your soil before planting, Put it in a shallow pan and bake at 350° for 30 minutes". Don Juchartz, our "Garden Doctor", is heard every Wed. at 10:30 AM.

May, 2010


REMOVE BLOOD (From Jay Hernandez in Troy)

Being a paramedic for 21 years, I have found the best way to remove blood is with 3% hydrogen peroxide. It reacts with the blood converting the peroxide to water and oxygen. Just keep blotting with white paper towels.

Thank you and the neighbors for being there! Jay from Troy

May, 2010


SOFTENING HARDENED BROWN SUGAR (Louise)

Place a slice of bread in a bag with the brown sugar, seal it tightly and let sit til softened. Louise said at least 1 day. If the bread gets dry you may have to replace it with another slice.

KEEPING BROWN SUGAR SOFT:

Remove from bag and place on a cookie sheet alongside a container of water. Bake 200° for about 20 minutes.

May, 2010


HALVING A RECIPE THAT ASKS FOR 3 LARGE EGGS (Lucy Taylor)

Lucy uses 1 large and 1 small egg for a total of 1 1/2 eggs. Now she can halve that recipe that just makes too much!

June, 2010


KEEP COFFEE FILTER FROM COLLAPSING (Bob Allison’s)

Dampen the basket before putting in the coffee filter. This will make the filter adhere to the basket and it will not collapse during brewing.

July, 2010


COOKING HARD COOKED EGGS TIP

Pierce the large end of the egg with a straight pin before cooking. Another neighbor called and said she thinks it’s safer to use the longer prong on the holders for corn-on-the-cob.

July, 2010


KEEP MOLD AWAY FROM BATH TILES

Apply a small amount of car wax to the tiles to prevent mold from growing.

July, 2010


HOME MADE FURNITURE POLISH (Carolyn's)

1/3 c. boiled linseed oil
1/3 c. turpentine
1/3 c. vinegar

Mix together and shake well. Apply with a soft cloth and wipe completely dry with another soft cloth.

Note: it was said that this was similar to the formula developed by the Henry Ford Museum to clean and polish their furniture.

September, 2010


FLOODED BASEMENT REMEDY

Disinfect your walls and floors with Lysol or a solution of 1/2 c. chlorine to 1 gal. water. Discard fruits, vegetables or food that has come in contact with the water. Wash jars or cans of food with soap and hot water using a brush, then immerse in chlorinated water. (3 drops of bleach to 1 gallon water) for at least 15 minutes. Clothing, carpets, toys and upholstered furniture cannot be disinfected, you should discard them. Beware of electrocution. Don’t go down in the water til the electricity has been cut off.

September, 2010


TURN A SOCK INTO A HEATING PAD:

Here is a use for those single socks we all have around. Fill one with long grain rice or dried beans and tie a knot in the end of the sock or sew it up on end. Microwave for 2 min. whenever you need a heating pad for a sore neck, back, arm or leg.

October, 2010


STORING LEFT-OVER HOLIDAY FOOD

Store left-over food within two hours after serving, including pumpkin pie.

Use several shallow storage containers to store left-over food.

Store in the refrigerator if eating left-over food within 3 days. Label and date.

Keep in the freezer for longer storage time. Label and date.

November, 2010


CREATIVE CHRISTMAS CARDS (Teresa Worth)

Let your family make your Christmas cards extra special this year. Pick out your favorite picture of your family from that year. Buy a ream of cardstock paper and fold in half. Get some extra prints of your pictures made. Now set the kids loose with glue, markers, stickers and embellishments. Your kids can give the cards their own personal touch and your friends and relatives will love to receive them. All you have to do is address the envelopes while they are creating their masterpieces, and, next thing that you know, they are ready for the mail!

December, 2010


SAVE MONEY ON HEATING BILLS HINT (Peter’s)

If you have an older house you can save money on your heating bills by blocking up unused chimneys with plastic foam.

January, 2011


STORING AND LABELING CORDS

Use empty toilet paper rolls to store appliance cords. It keeps them neat and you can write on the roll what appliance it belongs to.

January, 2011


CAKE FROSTING TIP

When you buy a container of cake frosting from the store, whip it with your mixer for a few minutes. You can double it in size.

March, 2011


HOME MADE VINEGAR WEED CONTROL (Aileen’s)

Boil 1 qt. water. Add 2 T. salt and 5 T. vinegar. While still hot, carefully pour into cracks of driveway or sidewalk to get rid of weeds. Do not use in grassy areas as it will kill them too.

April, 2011


HOME MADE WEED CONTROL (April’s)

25-30 lemongrass stalks, cut in half or 1/2 c. lemon juice
1 gal. water
1 T. salt

Place ingredients in boiling water and boil for 1 hour. While warm, ladle or spray the weeds. If using the juice, boil for 1/2 hour. Reheat for each application.

Note: If you want to kill the grass as well, add 1 c. vinegar.

April, 2011


STORAGE TIPS FOR ONIONS

Vidalia Sweet Onions have a very high moisture content. So that you may enjoy them for a longer length of time, use one of the following methods to store.

1) Wrap each onion, separately, in newspaper, paper towel or aluminum foil and place in refrigerator. 2) Place onions in ladies panty hose. Tie a knot between each onion and cut off below each knot as onion is needed. Make sure onions are stored in cool dry place away from direct sunlight or moisture.
3) Place onions evenly on a wire rack, spreading so onions do not touch each other. Be sure rack is elevated so onions will receive adequate ventilation.
4) Raw or cooked onions may be stored in freezer. The onion will lose some of the texture, but the flavor is just as good. Use for stews, soups, etc.

June, 2011


DRYING HERBS (Kathy’s)

Set up a clothes line in the garage. Tie the herbs together in bunches and hang from the line for 10-14 days or til dry.

August, 2011


MOSQUITO CONTROLL (Jerry Baker)

Mickey from Livonia e-mailed this to us:
Question: I checked Jerry Baker's website and found a page of various formulas; this particular one is for mosquitoes. I remember years ago listening to Jerry Baker's radio program and passing on all kinds of information to my husband. I don't quite understand the "20 GALLON" hose-end sprayer, unless it is similar to the small Miraclo-Gro sprayer. Perhaps one of the neighbors can clarify. Have a wonderful day! Mickey

http://www.jerrybaker.com/garden/information/tipsandtonics.aspx

A. Remember that any standing water in your yard or garden can turn into a mosquito breeding ground, so get rid of any puddles around your yard. Then, overspray your yard with my Buzz Buster Lemonade: 1 cup of lemon-scented ammonia and 1 cup of lemon-scented dish washing liquid in a 20 gallon hose-end sprayer, filling the balance of the sprayer jar with warm water. Repeat this treatment 3 times a week in the evening, and the little buggers will be history.

November, 2011


TIP FOR STORING CELERY

Wrap in aluminum foil and place in the crisper of the refrigerator.

January, 2012


TEST SHELF LIFE OF A BOUILLON CUBE

Drop the bouillon cube into boiling water. If the cube does not melt it is too old. Discard the remaining cubes. If it melts, but the flavor isn’t up to normal strength, add another cube.

May, 2012


REMOVING HEAVY DUTY BLOOD STAINS (E-Mailed from Claudia)

Household hydrogen peroxide is my secret heavy duty stain remover. If a stain remains after trying to remove it using one of these other methods, try saturating the stain with full strength hydrogen peroxide. If the hydrogen peroxide foams, blot to remove the foam with a paper towel and reapply til it no longer foams. Let the stain air dry out of direct sunlight. If needed, you can repeat the procedure. Hydrogen peroxide is safe for fabric.

December, 2012


REMOVE STAINS FROM COTTON OR LINEN SWEATER

Mix 1/4 c. electric dishwasher detergent powder and a bucket of water. COMPLETELY DISSOLVE. Soak sweater til stain is gone (up to 15 minutes). Rinse completely. This does not work on synthetics.

January, 2013


HOMEMADE “DRAFT DODGER”

Lay out an old towel or sheet and place the cardboard cylinder from Christmas or birthday wrapping paper at the end of the towel. Roll up and secure with 3-5 rubber bands. Place at the foot of a door or window that has a draft of air coming through.

February, 2013





Help With Everything Turkey, A Holiday Dinner Helper!

This help link has everything you'll need to help you through the Holiday dinners, how do it, how not to do it, Recipes, tips, links and toll free phone numbers. Even a great stuffing recipe from Toula Patsalis, the former owner of the great cooking store in Detroit, Kitchen Glamour.




There will be more hints on the way! I'll be adding them to the top and bottom of the page as I still have some hints from past Menu Minders to publish here for you. So remember to check the whole page when you come back. Don't forget, a subscription to our Menu Minder makes a great gift for a new cook or a person moving into their first house or apartment.

Thank you for visiting our site,

Bob & Rob Allison

A photo of Bob & Rob Allison at the Microphones

Try These Free Recipe Pages


Free Recipes 1                 Free Recipes 2                 Free Recipes 3



Copyright 1997-2014 Bob Allison Enterprises

| Sample Menu Minder | Menu Minder Index | Sample Cookbook | Cookbook Index |

| Free Recipes 1 | Free Recipes 2 | Free Recipes 3 | Household Hints | Corrections |

| Order Back Issues | Subscribe Now | Back to Home Page |

| Listen Live | Last 10 Shows | Chat Area |

the end of page gif

stats.