Simple Kitchen How-to’s, just for fun

Simple Kitchen How-to’s

Ever wonder how to pick a cantaloupe or clean a baking sheet? Check out these tips for some of your common kitchen questions:


Freeze bananas

Ditch the individual bags or plastic wrap and just toss your banana in the fridge in the peel. Bananas out of their peel can also easily get stuck together, making it hard to dig out only one. When you are ready to use them, run the banana’s peel under warm water for 10 seconds, and slice the peel down the side. The banana will still be frozen but will slide out of the peel.

Make a Smoothie

Here is an easy guide to making a delicious smoothie; what you need: ½ cup to 1 cup liquid, 1 Tbsp to ¼ cup of a something creamy, ½ tsp to 1 Tbsp of a flavor, 1 to 2 cups of frozen fruits and vegetables, and a bit of sweetener to taste. Your liquid could be Kefir, juice, milk, or water. Your creamy component could be nut butter, yogurt, or avocado. Your flavor might be vanilla, lemon or lime, mint, or cinnamon. Your choice of frozen fruits and vegetables is endless.

Juice a Lemon

Maximize the amount of juice you will get by microwaving your lemon (or lime) for 20 seconds. You can even use this for cut lemon that has dried out in the fridge.

Store an Avocado

The best way to store an avocado is with the skin on, keeping the kit intact. The skin and the pit block oxygen from reaching the flesh. Limiting that contact preserves your avocado. Then, place plastic wrap directly on the flesh, so no air gets to it and store it in the fridge. You can also store your avocado in a container with an onion. The onion slows the browning process.

Picking a Ripe Cantaloupe

The best way to pick a cantaloupe is by smelling it. Pick up the melon and take a whiff of the stem end. There should be a sweet smell, but not too sweet. If you can’t smell anything, it’s not quite ripe. There are a couple of things to look for, as well. If it has a stem or green showing through, it’s not quite ripe. It should be firm, but not rock hard.

Soften Butter Quickly

Grate a stick of butter on the coarse side of a box grater. It will soften almost instantly.

Clean a Baking Sheet

Your baking sheet might seem impossible to get clean after roasting vegetables. Try using a paste of baking soda and vinegar. Spread it over the pan and let it sit for at least 30 minutes (or up to 3 hours).

Lisa Lewis is the author of Healthy Happy Cooking. Her cooking skills have been a part of First Place for Health wellness weeks and other events for many years. She provided recipes for 15 of the First Place for Health Books and is a contributing author in Better Together and Healthy Holiday Living. She partners with community networks, including the Real Food Project, to provide free healthy cooking classes. You can find her cookbook, Healthy Happy Cooking in the FP4H store here:


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