Healthy Kitchen Hacks is a bi-weekly series on Teaspoon of Spice. We share fellow bloggers’ and our own favorite cooking shortcuts, kitchen tricks and “aha” ideas for making healthy meals and healthy living a snap.
It’s the lucky #13 edition of the previous 12 Healthy Kitchen Hacks. Beans served in the New Year are lucky. And every time I get a really sweet pineapple, I feel extra lucky. I do hope you feel a bit lucky after trying out these tips – lucky to have saved a bit of time in the kitchen!
1) How to Best Cut a Pineapple
Via Katie @MomsKitchenHandbook
Do not fear the prickly fruit. In this how-to on easily slicing pineapple, Katie shows several neat tricks for making quick work of the sweet, sunny fruit. Once your pineapple is neatly sliced, enjoy as is, or try our some of our popular pineapple picks:
2) Easiest Way to Cook Dried Beans
All jokes aside, dried bean season is upon us. It seems I make a batch of baked beans several times a month during the summer barbecue season. Talk about a quick, easy, cheap and healthy way to happily feed a crowd. Now, you’ll have no need to pre-soak beans. This trick will save you a step when cooking dried beans.
3) 1-Step Frozen Yogurt Pops
Via Lilly @Listotic
Maybe I’m late to the ice pop party, but I’ve never seen this trick to insert craft sticks (Popsicle sticks) into yogurt cups. The best part: It’s totally customizable to the variety of yogurt you have on hand – or the type your family likes. My kids found 73 was the magic number of seconds under hot water to release the container.
4) Use Dental Floss to Cut Soft Cheeses and More….
Via Brittany @ AHealthySliceOfLife
Brittany uses unflavored dental floss to cut soft cheeses to avoid cheese on sticking to a knife. I love the way using dental floss makes perfect little goat cheese rounds. Growing up my mom always used floss or kitchen string to slice through a log of soft rolled-up dough to make cinnamon rolls. You can also floss to zip through hard boiled eggs, fancy cakes and quick breads.
5) Secret to Cutting and Storing Cheese
I learned this trick back when I worked for the fabulous artisanal cheesemakers of New England. To keep your cheese fresher longer, don’t hold cheese with your fingers while slicing. Even if your hands are washed, touching the cheese introduces oils and potentially bacteria, making it mold more quickly where it was touched. Instead place cheese under large piece of parchment and fold over part of the cheese to hold. Next, use that same parchment to loosely wrap cheese. Place it in a zip-top plastic bag before store in refrigerator.
Laura Werlin, author of many books on American cheeses taught me: Never store cheese wrapped in plastic wrap or it’s original plastic packaging (unless you plan to use in the next day). Plastic suffocates cheese and the moisture builds up, making the cheese mold more quickly. For more cheese storage tips, see Laura’s list.