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First challenge: Hulling a strawberry with a straw http://amy-newnostalgia.blogspot.com/2010/06/hulling-strawberries-with-straw.html
Summary: Take a strawberry and inset a straw in the bottom of the strawberry and push the straw up the center of the strawberry and the cap will pop off. Success
I found that it worked best with the small berries. If you had a larger straw like the kind they have at Starbucks, the bigger berries would probably work better. The bigger berries, the straw would pop off the cap partially and you can either rip off the other side or take the straw and angle it to get the other side. Overall, I was very pleased with this tip!
Second challenge: Cooking an ear of corn in the microwave http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YnBF6bv4Oe4&feature=plcp
I belong to a Facebook group and someone found this and posted it. I tried it and to my amazement, it worked like a charm. No kitchen sink full of corn husks and silk all over the place. Clean and simple!
Summary: Place regular ear of corn in the microwave. Do not do anything to the corn, just place it in the microwave just like indicated in the video. Microwave on high setting for about 3 1/2 minutes per ear (I have only cooked two at the most at one time). When finished, use a pot holder or oven glove and remove the ear(s) from the microwave and cut off bottom of ear up so that you are trimming off the bottom row of corn (you have to watch the video, I cannot describe it any better than that). Hold the top of the ear of corn (where the silk is) and shake out the ear from the husk. You will have the husk and silk intact in your hand and the ear of corn will come out clean.
I found that you cannot let the corn sit after cooking. You have to remove the husk immediately otherwise you will have difficulty removing the husk. Also, when picking out your corn at the market, I get the ears that nobody has peeled back. I find that it steams better if it is untouched.
Last challenge in this post is a miracle pan cleaning mixture.
I am not going to post the link because it was not a success for me (but I have it pinned on Pinterest). It claims that you can take 1/4 cup of baking soda and mix hydrogen peroxide until it forms a paste and it will clean up your baking sheets to almost like new. Sorry, it did not work.
I made up the paste and in the blog she used her fingers to clean up her pans. I used a green scotchbrite (non metallic) scrubber and these were my results. Granted, my pans are old and extreme. I only use them with foil or parchment paper to cook on. The first pans I tried are drip pans that get the most abuse. These pans are over 20 years old and I agree, I do need to replace them but I wanted to try this experiment first. Maybe it was the type of pans I used but I think I will just use the SOS pad in the future as it made the most difference.
|These are a twin set. The left is untouched and the right was scrubbing with the baking soda mixture after 15 minutes. Little change.|
|Before - untouched|
|After scrubbing 15 minutes with baking soda mixture and scotchbrite scrubber (little better).|
|Same sheet using a SOS pad and scrubbing again for about 15 minutes (best result).|