My Kitchen Tips

  1. Get someone else to fix a meal…AND CLEAN Up 🙂
  2. Get a flat rectangle tomato slicer to slice tomatoes with a serrated side. I have had a plastic one that stands and clamps a tomato, but the cutting spaces eventually got off line and made it difficult to cut. Make sure you rinse and core the tomato first.
  3. I get the multi-colored Post-It flags to mark recipes in magazines and cookbooks. I try to keep a different color for meats.salads, desserts, etc. Even if that doesn’t remain, I got the name of the recipe that’s marked, so I can see what recipe it is without opening the book or magazine.
  4. I have 3 Tupperware spaghetti containers. 1 for spaghetti, 1 for fettucini, and 1 for amgel hair pasta. My containers have serving sizes for 1 & 2 servings. They don’t have to be “Tupperware”, but just make sure the container is long enough for spaghetti! I have square and rectangular containers for macaroni and instant potato flakes. I just cut the directions off the instant potato box and lay it on top of the flakes in the container. I even have labels on them from my label maker. My label maker gets used for lots of things around the house from file folders, school supplies, to food.
  5. I have a set of small, medium, and large metal trigger scoops. I use the large to make dinner-size meatballs, the medium for appetizer-size meatballs or special-occasion cookies, and the small for cookies. I got another small scoop so someone can help put cookies on the tray. (At our house, if you want to eat cookies you can help scoop cookies.) I even came across a smaller scoop that I use for melon balls. It doesn’t get used a lot, but they all get used.
  6. We have a garden, but when I run out of sweet onions or green/red peppers in the freezer, I will buy a 3 lb. bag of sweet onions or 6-8 red/green peppers when they are on sale. I hook up my KitchenAid food chopper, chop the onions or peppers, put them on my dehydrator overnight (in the garage so I don’t have to smell them dehydrating), and put the dehydrated product in 2-4 cup freezer bags (writing the date) and put in the deep freezer to have on hand. Yes, there are lots of tears with onions even with my ceiling fan running, but to me it’s worth it. If I need minced onions I take my dehydrated ones and crumple them with my hands. If the recipe calls for onions or peppers, just put a handful in a bowl of cold water. Let them re-hydrate, drain and you’re ready to go.
  7. With MS, I’m glad to still be on my feet, but I get tired quicker, so I allow more time for fixing than what the recipe states. I’m not dead, just slower.
  8. I read through a recipe first and gather my ingredients. If I have items to mix in a bowl, I will sit down at the kitchen table with ingredients and measuring cups/spoons.
  9. If I have a harvest of fruit (peaches, tomatoes, etc) that require “slipping the skins” at my kitchen sink I have a stool that has 2 steps that I pull up to my sink, put old towels on the floor to catch dripping water. Then I can sit and do my work.
  10.  I have 3 types of cutting boards. I have the big colorful ones from Walmart that work good for cutting melon or lettuce. I have a smaller one that is folded on 2 sides and flat in the middle. This works good for dicing potatoes, veggies or meat. With 2 bent sides it makes it easier to slide off meat or veggies into a skillet. My 3rd is the smallest acrylic one I got for a shower gift BEFORE I got married. I tend to grab it for smaller items because it’s in the front where I keep my cutting boards.
  11. When I get a sack of sweet corn to have for a meal, I put a tsp of butter, salt,pepper, and a sprinkle of sugar. Not a lot. My type 2 diabetic mother-in-law does too. Since we live on a farm, we raise sweet corn in the summer and put up about 120 bags  or more if we can. We even take more mature ears, blanch and cool them and freeze them 5 or 6 to a sack. My kids love having corn-on-the-cob when it’s cold outside! Depending on the patch production, we sell them to neighbors just so we get the price of the seed paid for. it usually is a family assembly production with husbands and kids. We’ve got it down to where we start early in the morning and can get done by noon. The livestock love getting the shucks and corncobs to eat when we are done!
  12. Whenever I fix lasagna, casserole, enchiladas, or any dish that requires foil on top. I lightly spray the foil with non-stick cooking spray so the cheese doesn’t come off with the foil.
  13. My family DOESN’T EAT blanched vegetables. Raw (like carrots & broccoli) or cooked like corn and green beans). At home we have canned or frozen veggies mostly. I add them to a saucepan to cook with about a teaspoon of butter, sprinkle of salt & pepper.Corn also gets a sprinkle of sugar. They may not LIKE the vegetable, but the agreement is they have to eat 1 SPOONFUL When my son comes home from school I hear about this veggie or that veggie that wasn’t fully cooked and he couldn’t handle more than a taste. I know blanched is healthier, but to me if they are FLAVORED they’re more likely to get eaten than thrown away like at school.
  14. If broccoli and cauliflower are on sale, whether raw or frozen I will buy them, boil them together, and serve it with a lot of cheese sauce! I never have any left over and the kids will work off the extra calories doing chores around the farm. I’m happy because it’s not a struggle to get veggies eaten. 🙂
  15. Yes, I use boxed potatoes, like au gratin, etc. with the dehydrated potatoes. After I put the potatoes in the dish, I add a handful of dehydrated onion (minced will work) also and mix with clean hands. We like the taste of potatoes and onions. Continue to make like the box says.
  16. When I buy a graham cracker pie crust, I peel the paper and glue off the clear side, wash it and turn it over and use as a cover on the pie I just made (like peanut butter pie). I can use it as a dome to keep the pie from drying out (if it lasts that long)! Then I can keep it on by pinching it in the foil. I’ve even kept it and wash both sides if I’m going to take food somewhere. Then I don’t have to worry if my container is going to get home!

If anyone else has any of their own tips, I would be glad to add them! Just leave me a comment. I listed a lot of things, but let me remind you I have had 23 years to “collect”  all these items. I wouldn’t be able to go buy these things all at once!

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