This page is devoted to helpful information that I’ve picked up along the way. Helpful everyday hints, kitchen shortcuts as well as other general topics. I’m sure there will be something here that you will end up saying, “Hey! I didn’t know that!” I’ll be adding to the list on a regular basis so check back often!
- Did you know that if you’re mailing books, cards, calendars, DVDs, CDs and journals that you can send it by Media Mail? It’s a cost-effective way that is much cheaper than regular mail. I was sending DVDs one day and saved myself $10.00 by using the media mail option. Just tell the USPS employee what your package contains but don’t fib because if the box is inspected and it doesn’t contain media they will send it back to you. Packages can weigh up to 70 lbs.
- Did you know that most lemons are coated with wax to keep the peel fresh and glossy? The wax is considered safe to eat, however if you need to zest the lemon, it’s best to de-wax it before proceeding. You can de-wax the lemons by pouring boiling water over them and then hold the lemon under cool, running water as you gently scrub with a vegetable brush.
- I always have trouble rolling out my cookie dough to the exact 1/4 inch thickness so that all my cookies are evenly sized. I read that if you put two new, clean paint sticks on your work surface on either side of your dough, it helps because you are rolling the dough until your rolling pin is resting on top of the paint sticks. The paint sticks I bought were exactly 1/4 inch thick and this tip really helped.
- When toasting coconut, pour 3 cups of unsweetened shredded coconut into a nonstick pan over medium heat. Make sure to use unsweetened coconut here! Coconut “chips” (aka the larger pieces) won’t work well either, as they tend to toast unevenly. Also, note that the larger the pan, the shorter the toasting time! Toast for 3-5 minutes, stirring constantly with a spatula to ensure even toasting. The coconut will become fragrant and a gorgeous tan/brown. As soon as you’re done toasting, turn the heat off and remove the coconut from the pan. Since the pan is still warm, if you let it sit for awhile the coconut may burn!