CSN Giveaway~Your chance to win $ 55

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The contest is closed now, and the winner will be announced Tomorrow. Thanks everyone for sharing your precious Tips.

With great pleasure let me announce a giveaway sponsored by CSN stores .

CSN Stores offers an incomparable selection, a trained service team, and prices that won’t be beat! From beds and desks to TV mounts, we can furnish your entire home, business, or school, and you can shop at all of our stores with one cart!

CSN Stores has over 200 online stores where you can find everything from beautiful wardrobes to cookware to chic lighting pieces! I was going through their collection and Oh My…I just wished I could grab it all 🙁

So here is a chance to win, one-time-use $55 gift certificate from CSN stores.

The contest is open for all, but sadly the gift could be shipped to the residents of US and Canada only (International shipping charges may be levied in case of Canada residents).

The people residing outside US or Canada need not be upset.In case you win, you can nominate a friend or relative residing in US . For Indian residents, Diwali is round the corner, so won’t you love to send gifts to your near and dear ones?

So here are the details:

Anyone who wishes to enter in this contest to get a chance to win 55 $ Gift certificate from CSN, all that you have to do is to leave a comment SHARING ONE TIP OR TRICK ,related to food/cooking/kitchen/handling appliances..anything that you can think of sharing. It could be as simple as how to clean a silverware, or as complicated as how to get that exact flavor of restaurant style Butter paneer recipe ;-).

Kindly do not copy from other websites (or atleast put it in your own words, since many of us follow the common tips available on net, like how to keep vegetables fresh, or how to make soft paneer at home.).

Don’t bother about what other people have shared. Its absolutely fine if the tip shared by you is already shared by some other person. And do not forget to provide your Email-ID, coz in case you win, I should be able to Mail you the good news !

The contest is open till 20th of October, 9 pm IST. All the entries after that will be considered invalid. One lucky winner will be chosen randomly. And don’t worry, the selection process will be transparent one, so be assured !

You can post as many tips and tricks as you wish. Each Tip shared in a separate comment will increase your chance of winning. Also if you blog, tweet or share it on facebook, let me know, coz that will again add up to your chance of winning.

So people, get going…fill the place with your secret and not-so-secret tips and tricks (all related to food and kitchen only), and win a chance to spend 55 $ at CSN online stores.

Good luck !

PS:Here is a gentle reminder:

Have you ever followed a recipe from this site? Do you cook the Sindhi Style food, after reading the recipe from this blog? If yes, would you like to cook again , any recipe from this blog, click it (No, we are not seeking professional pictures, you can even click with your Cellphone) and mail it to Ria . Check the details at Ria’s blog. where she wants you all to cook the Sindhi food, following the recipes from Sindhirasoi.

People who do not have any website of their own, can simply Email, the picture of food cooked, along with the name and link of recipe. For example, if you have cooked Kadhi chaawal following the recipe from this blog, then along with the picture clicked by you, wirte “Kadhi Chaawal” and provide the link (http://sindhirasoi.com/2008/02/10/sindhi-kadhi/) in the email and send it to airmathew AT gmail DOT com

      Kindly Do participate….if you have any queries just contact me using

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158 thoughts on “CSN Giveaway~Your chance to win $ 55

  1. while cooking sweets..to reduce the qunatity of sugar…add half pinch of salt in the last 5 mins before turning of the heat(before sweet is done).This will be sweetened more…

  2. while cooking…some times hot oil will fall on ur skin(skin burns due to oil)..then apply some salt as first aid

  3. While Preparing ghee(melting butter) add fenu greek seeds or drumstick leaves..which ives a nice aroma and flavour

  4. To get rid of cockroaches in kitchen…sprinklle hing in corners and some parts in kitchen

  5. To clean up the sink kitchen..mix cookin soda in water and the clean the sink

  6. On leather bags..stains of ink,eyeliner,lipstick rub with rubber instead of water..it will remove the stain

  7. To get rid of ants in kitchen..sprinkle dried mint leaves powder in some places in kitchen

  8. if ur body has over heat..to get rid of it…boil 2 glasses of water with 1 spoon of corinader seeds…let it become half qunatity …then cool it..add a spoon of sugar and then drink…. heat in the body comes down

  9. To remove oil stain on clothes…sprinkle some talcum powder on the strain..rub over it…powder absorbs the oil..later wash with detergent..

  10. While frying onions for curry/fry add a pinch of salt..so that they will be cooked easily

  11. Celery will keep much longer in the fridge if you wrap it in aluminum foil!

  12. One tip I have is to use older eggs when making boiled eggs and they will not stick. …..tiffypoot @ (aol.com)

  13. Don’t store tomatoes in the refrigerator – they lose their rich flavor!

  14. To make your cakes more level and reduce any air pockets- after filling your pan with batter lightly tap the bottom on the counter a few times.

  15. To thaw frozen meat faster add a little vinegar (It also tenderizes, besides speeding up the thawing process)

  16. To keep brown sugar soft, store it with an apple

  17. My tip would be to use the diswasher to get the silverware the cleanest.

    tahearn at roadrunner dot com

  18. To removet garlic smell from ur fingersJust rub ur hands on any steel vessel like spoon or thali and voila its gone that really works…
    Try it its amazing it works for me so i am sure it wud work for y’a;;

  19. My family favs r kababs/tikka b it roasted veggies or chicken or paneer/tofu..but i always burn them …and tht ruins the taste of the dish too…

    Wooden Skewers: Soak all your wooden skewers in cold water for twenty minutes to prevent them from burning

  20. Grating Cheese: Freeze for twenty five minutes before grating. It will shred so much easier

  21. Quick Tenderizer: Use vinegar as a meat tenderizer. Add a tablespoon to water when boiling meat or ribs for stews. This basic cooking tips will help tenderizer even the toughest meat..

  22. Another tip-
    I love squash soup and pumpkin cake/pies but sumtimes its hard to cut the hard outer cover with a knife..
    Need help cutting a tough pumpkin or squash? Put it in the oven whole for about 10 minutes while the oven heats up . It will soften just enough to get your knife through it

  23. Heres my another tip alka,
    I love baking and often forget to remove the eggs out of my refrigerator as recipes calls for the eggs to b @ room temperture..
    Wht i do is I pull out the eggs first and place them in a bowl of warm water..and continue my mixing of dry and wet ingredients..
    They may not be exactly to room temperature but they are a lot warmer than when they came out of the fridge! This also ensure that the eggs are fresh. If they sink, they are good..
    2 tips in one…

  24. Sonita Kataria says:

    Mix sooji into leftover dal (any cooked dal, even sambar will do), and the flavours and herbs of your choice– garam masala, chaat masala, coriander, mint, kasuri methi….add any of chopped onions, tomatoes, capsicums, carrots etc if you like. Fry like pancakes on a non-stick tawa. The result is quite close to the sindhi ‘chilro’

  25. Sonita Kataria says:

    Use a rack like the one musicians use, (to keep the musical score while playing an instrument) to keep the recipe/recipe book you are using, in your kitchen. It will make you feel like an artiste, practising the fine art of cooking!!

  26. If a curry is too salty, put potatoes in it and boil for some time. The potatoes do cut down the saltiness.

  27. A full refrigerator is more efficient than a half-empty one because the food stored inside radiates cold when the refrigerator isn’t running. If your fridge isn’t usually full, store jugs full of water in it to increase efficiency.

  28. If there is too much fat or grease in your soup or sauce, put an ice cube in the pot. The grease will gravitate toward the ice cube, allowing you to spoon it out.

  29. Keep lettuce fresh by storing it wrapped in a dry paper towel inside a plastic bag in the crisper of your refrigerator.

  30. Activated charcoal is a better odor absorbent than baking soda and can be used to soak up refrigerator and kitchen odors.

  31. The leftover water from boiling rice, pasta or potatoes is full of nutrients and can be used to water plants.

  32. If you burn rice, put a piece of bread on top of it for a few minutes to absorb the burned odor and flavor.

  33. Before juicing a lemon or lime, roll it with your palm against the countertop–this enables you to get more juice!

  34. When measuring flour, don’t scoop it with the measuring cup–use a regular spoon to shake it into the cup. This restores air to the flour and makes the final product less dense and chewy.

  35. Use a metal measuring cup if possible to measure oil or anything sticky. Before using it, rinse or dip it in hot water to minimize sticking.

  36. Use a silicone baking sheet for rolling out dough. This prevents sticking without using flour and helps make cleanup easy.

  37. When heating a pre-cooked sausage in the microwave, wrap it in a wet paper towel–this prevents it from shriveling and splitting open.

  38. If you are going to cook or bake raisins, soak them in water first for 15 to 30 minutes. This prevents them from getting dry and tough.

  39. Adding a very small amount of lemon juice to the water when you boil rice keeps the rice fluffy.

  40. Use a damp towel or paper towel to clean up broken glass-the tiny shards will stick to the towel!

  41. If you have food boil over on your stove or in your oven, sprinkle the spill with salt. This will prevent it from burning until you can clean it.

  42. If you are going to boil milk or cream, rinse your pan with hot water immediately before use to prevent sticking.

  43. To keep a recipe handy while cooking, clamp it inside a skirt hanger and hang it from your cupboard handle. This frees up counter space and prevents you from losing your place in your cookbook or magazine.

  44. Crack eggs on a flat surface, such as the counter, rather than on the side of a bowl. This prevents eggshell shards from getting into the food and is less likely to contaminate your food with germs from the eggshell.

  45. To keep brown sugar from getting dry and clumpy, store it with a small piece of damp terra cotta (can even be a shard from a broken plant pot)! This keeps the brown sugar moist for months!

  46. Keep all your recipes in a three-ring binder in the kitchen. If the recipe is from a cookbook, photocopy it; if it’s from the internet, print it; if it’s a family/personal recipe, type it and then print it. Keep copies on your computer in case the copy you’re using gets wet or dirty. This way you won’t get stains and spills on your cookbooks and you can take the one recipe out that you need and put it on the refrigerator with a magnet while you’re using it.

  47. boiled potatoes are a boon one can create a lot of dishes from leftover potatoes they can be added into leftover dry sabzis and be made into cutlets or used has paratha stuffings or can also be fried into pakoras or be made in mash or can used alongwith mixed veges to make baked dish or jacket potaoes if skins are left on which are delecious with cheesy filling or one can add paneer or methi to it and create new dish adding spices and herbs wow list is endless

  48. sometimes leftover rice can be made into various delicasies ie by adding some spices herbs and chickpea flour and making it into delicious pakoras like a starter or by making into main course dish by adding few veggies or chicken or egg and spices making into fried rice or by adding some milk and sugar dryfruits and elachi just like a rice pudding or kheer this will be good dessert

  49. dip the knife in hot water and then cut loaf bread the slice will come out even palate knife should be dipped in hot water to make surface of cream smooth on the cake while decorating cream cakes.

  50. to make pakora batter crispy add some rice flour or cornflour to the batter and instead of water add soda water to make the batter. This will make the pakoras fluffy and crispy

  51. remove foul smell of fish add some lemon juice salt and some haldi to it and marinate it for 5 to 10 minutes it will surely remove surely remove fishy smell

  52. sometimes milk starts to curdle or gets sour taste during summer times then one could make good paneer or chenna out of it by adding some more malai into it which not only make paneer more some soft but one gets more yield out of mixture
    Paneer can be made by splitting milk by adding lemon juice or a few drops of vinegar then when pour mixture into a muslin cloth and put weight over it till water drains this paneer can be used a in a lot of sweet and savoury dishes

  53. if one has made gravy or sabzi a bit salty one can add potatoes or some corn flour mixed in water to dish it will reduce the amount of salty taste to great extent.

  54. if one spills oil on the floor clean it by putting some flour on it which soaks the oil and one can just sweep it out

  55. If you accidentally over salt your soup, drop in a whole peeled potato – it will absorb the excess salt!

  56. If you get ants in the kitchen you don’t want to use poisons around your food, so use chalk! Ants won’t cross chalk, so draw lines around where they enter from.

  57. rub a little vegetable oil into your hands before chopping peppers and your skin won’t absorb the spicy chili oil

  58. Stir in a pinch of baking soda into milk before boiling – it keeps the milk from curdling

  59. to keep chopped apples or pears from turning brown squeeze a little lemon on them

  60. I sometimes use flavored creamer instead of milk to dip my french toast – easy way to add a rich hint of hazelnut, vanilla or whatever you like!

  61. Never let your knives soak in the sink. After every use, wash, wipe clean and store.
    sazzyfrazz at gmail dot com

  62. Remove stems from the green chillies and store them in a stainless steel container which has a tight fitting lid.The chillies will stay fresh even for 2 weeks

  63. Tip42-
    While cooking green-peas add 3 or 4 drops of vinegar to preserve its green color

  64. Tip41-
    To get potato cooked faster, add little lemon juice to it
    Add a tablespoon of vinegar while boiling potato to preserve its white color

  65. Tip 40-
    for softer chapathis knead the dough with milk or add 1-2 tblsp of plain yoghurt to 1 cup wheat flour and knead it with water…

  66. Tip39-
    I always Add Banana to chapatti mix, chapatti will be softer and tastier..and more than tht healthier option for kids to include fruit in there diet

  67. To keep my tupperware from getting stained with stored leftover red sauces, I first apply olive oil to the inside of the container and that will help your tupperware stain free!

    lyndadawinda1074 at yahoo dot com

  68. You can store onions in the refrigerator for up to six months! Just wrap them individually in foil. You can also freeze them, but first peel, wash, core them, then place onions in a plastic bag and freeze

  69. Hi Alka,

    I put curry leaves in the end when I make ghee.It adds a lot of flavor to the ghee.Also instead of throwing the orange peels in the trash I throw them into the garbage disposal it really adds a nice smell to the kitchen.My mom throws away the fruit and vegetable peels to the soil around the plants and that makes a nice compost.

    Pushpa @ simplehomefood.com

  70. Tip38-
    Homemade coconut milk-
    I was making a goan dish and saw tht i m out of coconut milk which was a mut in the recipe…going to store was nt a good option…so i searched online and found a recipe to make homemade coconut milk-
    heres how-
    1 1/2 cups water
    7/8 cup dry unsweetened shredded coconut
    heat the water, but do not bring it to a boil.
    Place the dry coconut in a blender and add 1 cup of the hot water.
    Blend for 2-3 minutes.
    Place a colander in a bowl and line the colander with a cheesecloth.
    Pour the blended coconut mixture into the cheesecloth and twist to extract the milk, letting the milk go into the bowl.
    Return the coconut pulp to the blender and add the remaining 1/2 cup of hot water. Blend for 1-2 minutes, strain and press through the cheesecloth into the bowl.
    Makes about 1 cup,,
    isnt tht easy…if u need more than a cup make large batches..

  71. Tip37-
    Simply dry roast saffron strands,cool and slighty crush in mortar and pestle and then soak in milk/water and use it in shahi gravies/desserts/biryani/pulaos..
    this way its more flavorful and bringsout more color…try it..

  72. Tip36-
    I love muffins but filling them cleanly andquick is a tedious job-
    so i just Use a ice cream scoop to fill muffin tins quickly.
    isnt tht quick andeasy .truly a time saver..

  73. Tip35-
    many people being pure vegeterians dont even eat eggs…
    so heres a healthy tip to replace eggs-
    Flaxseed Meal as an Alternative to Egg
    You can also use flaxseed oil to replace an egg. Use 1 tablespoon flaxseed meal and 3 tablespoons water. You can replace up to two eggs in a recipe in this manner, but do not use flaxseed meal as an egg replacement if you are already using it as an oil replacement.

  74. Tip34-
    healthy replacement for Oil –
    Flaxseed Meal as an Alternative for Oil-
    You can use flaxseed meal to replace up to 1/4 cup of oil in recipes. You use it in a 3 to 1 ratio. If your recipe calls for 1 tablespoon of oil, you use 3 tablespoons of flaxseed meal. If your recipe calls for 1/4 cup of oil you use 3/4 cup flax meal. If your recipe calls for more than 1/4 cup of oil, you can replace part of it with flaxseed meal and make up the difference with unsweetened applesauce(i use homemade) if you don’t want to use oil.

  75. Tip33-
    Saving cut avocado without it turning brown-
    Use the avocado half without the pit, and leave the pit in the other avocado half. Press plastic wrap onto avocado flesh and place in refrigerator. This will minimize browning until you are ready to use the rest of your avocado..

  76. You have a lovely site and I have already planned to cook a few dishes for the T&T event!
    Yip: To remove grime from dishes,pans and non stick cookware, wet the dish and sprinkle baking soda thoroughly over it. leave it overnight and wash as usual the next day. Dishes should sparkle. Vinegar could also be used the same way. it helps in removing tea stains effectively.

  77. i’m eyeing up those reversible griddle pans on csn. i love their stores.

    my tip is the lemon pieces down the garbage disposal. lifesaver!

  78. Tip32-
    Dont add salt while cooking lentils.Salt added to the cooking water will toughen the beans and lentils wil take longer to cook. Add salt once the lentils are completely cooked

  79. Tip 31-
    Eating a mixture of Saunf(Fennel seeds)and Ajwain(Carom seeds)after every meal helps in good digestion..

  80. Tip 30-
    Sprinkle some salt in a frying pan to prevent oil from splashing

  81. Tip29-
    To boil a cracked egg, add some vinegar to the water and place the egg in it. The egg shell will remain inside

  82. Tip28-
    When cilantro and mint is in season and much more cheaper u can store them.
    Storing Cilantro & Mint leaves : Clean, wash and chop cilantro or mint leaves finely. Fill each cube in a ice cube tray with the finely chopped cilantro or mint leaves. Top each cube with cold water and freeze. The cilantro or mint cubes can be dropped into curries etc. on an as needed basis

  83. Tip27-
    Strong odors on your hands (such as onions or fish) can be removed by lightly wetting your hands and then sprinkling on baking soda. Rub the soda all over the hands, then rinse the soda away and the odours too

  84. Tip26-
    Cleaning A Messy Blender : To clean a blender, add a cup of warm water, run for a few seconds. Now add a drop of dishwashing detergent and another cup of water and blend. Let is sit for a few seconds. Rinse clean..the smell also goes off .

  85. Tip25-
    Easy tip but very very useful -My non indian frnds often ask me how to make soft chapathis-
    Tip for making soft chappati dough-While making paneer from milk, don’t throw away the paneer water. This nutritious water can be used for making soft dough for chapatis or can be used to cook dals.After kneading let the dough rest for atleast 20min.

  86. Dear Alka,
    heres my TIp24-
    Quick Tomato Paste Cubes : Spoon tomato paste into ice cube trays. Freeze overnight. Transfer into plastic bags and freeze. Frozen cubes can be dropped right into curries

  87. tips for lemons or limes : Larger lemons and limes tend to be sweeter. Also the thinner the skin the more juice! Warm them slightly to extract even more juice – you can put them in the microwave for 20 seconds or so before cutting them.

  88. Does it hurt to try??

    Here is my tip.

    I read somewhere that if by any chance you add double the salt or you find that your curry (sambar, rasam or any gravy) is substantially salty, take a block of skinned ginger and put it inside when the curry is boiling. It is said that it takes away the excess salt.

    I have not tried it.. Just wanted to share. If it does, I think we are all in great luck..:)

  89. Wow I love your site and will love to participate you have encouraged me to blog. Here are some of my tips
    Clear brass vessels with tamarind to make them shiny

    Use toothpaste to gold jewelery which has lost shine and then it will bright and shiny.

    Leftover rotis can be made into chivda or kathi rolls

    Yoghurt gone sour add some milk it will not only remove sourness it will give good taste

    Vegetables leftover can be made into paratha by adding boiled mashed potatoes and flour also cutlets can be made by adding breadcrumbs

    Remove kitchen stains by washing the surface lemon and salt with vinegar then wash with soap

    Day old Stale bread can made into breadcrumbs and referigerate it

  90. To get a better sear on meat, first pat it dry!

  91. It’s difficult to keep fresh herbs on hand – especially when you only need a tablespoon or so, it wilts and wastes. Check out stores like Trader Joes – they have frozen fresh cubes of many herbs like basil! They store in the freezer and are ready when you need them!

  92. Besides a large wooden cutting board, I keep two small cutting boards that slide in neatly next to the microwave – one wood and one plastic – for quick and small chopping jobs. I use wood for herbs, fruits, and veggies; plastic for meats. It’s more sanitary using plastic for meats so the juices don’t soak into your wood board!

  93. Here’s a weird tip I stumbled on – cheese can remove wood stain from your hands!

  94. I par boil pork ribs in water with cinnamon before BBQing – so tender and the cinnamon adds a really lovely note to the flavor

  95. run used lemon rinds through your garbage disposal – leaves it smelling fresh!

  96. Hi Alka posted about your giveaway in my blog…Happy hosting 🙂

  97. Hi Alka,

    Apply little bit salt before cutting plantain (Vazhakkaai) and plantain flower (vazhapoo) . It will protect hands from becoming black and sticky.

  98. using a crockpot is great for having a delicious homecooked meal waiting for you when you get home from work!

  99. while cooking okra, just either add some lime/lemon juice or yogurt! Tada no sticky okra anymore

  100. I forgot to write add baking soda,so heres the corrected tip for
    Tarnished Silverware: Line a cake pan with aluminum foil. Fill with2 cups of hot water(150deg) and add 1 Tbls. of baking soda per .Lay silverware in pan, touching aluminum foil. Watch the stains disappear

  101. Tip23-Microwave
    Microwave Food splatters – To easily remove this mess, place a sponge soaked in water or just a dish filled with 1/2 cup water in the microwave. Cook on high heat for 2 minutes. The filth is now ready to be wiped right off – no scrubbing!

    Microwave Odors: Keep a cup of baking soda in the microwave between uses.

  102. Gargle your mouth with sesame oil early in the morning before brushing your teeth. This will kill all germs and its a natural mouth cleanser and freshener. It will clean the stomach and will cure all ulcers in the mouth.

  103. Dear Alka,Great tht i found u,actually this was my first comment,but i saw tht there was some problem submitting it…anyways better late than never…U hv a lovley space with simple easy to adapt recipe with clear texts,wonderful pics and above all wonderful posts on sindhi cuisine…wil surely try some and add those to ur link…heading to the archives…following u so tht i dont miss ur amazing innovative and unique recipes..do drop @ my space too when time permits…
    sanyukta gour(bayes)

    and heres the Tip22-
    Spray your Tupperware with nonstick cooking spray before pouring in tomato-based sauces – no more stains

  104. Tip21-Cleaning
    a)When cleaning glass and crockery add a handful of salt and then rinse with water to get it sparkling clean.
    b)Avoid using non-stick pans for making sour dishes as it will remove the coating faster
    c)To remove grease and odor from your dishes, add a tablespoon of vinegar to hot soapy water
    d)To prevent the formation of ice rub some table salt to the insides of the freezer
    e)If your teacups are stained, then simply wet cup and put around 2 tablespoons of salt in it and then gently rub it clean. You will find your cups sparkling clean
    f)If you are having trouble with a vessel containing burnt food then add some chopped onions and pour some boiling water over it. Keep it for five minutes and then wash away

  105. Tip 20-
    Do not throw away used lemons. Instead put them in the pressure cooker when cooking. This will help in preventing the inside of the cooker from turning black

  106. When you make homemade ghee, add 1 tsps of yogurt after removing ghee from heat. This enhances the aroma of the ghee.

    Happy hosting 🙂

  107. I just remembered another one – always, always freeze overripe bananas in a ziploc bag if you do not want to eat/use them immediately. This way you can have bananas ready for smoothies and baking whenever you want!

  108. Hey Alka! I’ll leave with a very simple tip – when you get fresh herbs like coriander, parsley, mint or any leafy herb, get it home, let it airdry for 15-20 mins if it seems wet and then wrap it up neatly (completely) in a kitchen towel (paper towel) and pack that into a ziploc bag. Remove excess air from the ziploc and seal and this goes into the fridge! This way the herbs stay fresh for almost a month!!! Hope this helps 🙂

  109. I have had to “make” my own buttermilk with 1 cup milk and 1 tbsp lemon juice or vinegar. Let it set for several minutes and use as directed.

  110. Tip-19
    1)Whole Stuffed Okra-Steam Okra( i use rice cooker) first along with the stuffing,remove on paper towels and then roast on a skillet while making Whole Stuffed Okra.This wil save time and wil take less oil to fry.
    2)When making Okra stirffry add lemon juice sotht it doesnt stick.

  111. Tip-Bitterness of Bittergourd-
    Many of u dont eat bittergourd/karela bcos o its bitterness…
    to reduce the bitterness-
    a)Slit Karelas inthe middle and apply a mixture of salt, wheat flour and curd all round. Keep aside for 1/2 an hour and then cook. This will take away some of the bitterness.
    b)This is a keeper-i always do this when making karelas-
    When making whole stuffed karelas,wash,peel the skin wit spoon and make a slit lengthwise and boil karela with tamarind/jaggery/peppercons/salt/cumin seeds..remove.. 80% of the bitterness wil b gone and the karelas would b more flavorful ..try it and dont throw the water…sieve it and drink the goodness..

  112. Tip17-To clean and freshen wooden chopping blocks, counter or rolling pins, sprinkle table salt on these surfaces when they are wet and scrub dry

  113. Tip 16-Fruits/Veggies-
    1)Store tomatoes with stems pointed down and they will stay fresher, longer!
    2)Potatoes: To keep them from budding, place an apple in the bag with potatoes
    3)To keep cauliflower white while cooking -add a little milk to the water!
    4)Add a pinch of sugar while cooking spinach and green leafy vegetables, it will retain its green colour
    5)Never store an apple near a banana unless you want to ripen the banana in a short period of time
    6)Avoid eggplant (brinjal) turning black by putting the cut pieces in a bowl of water mixed with a spoon of milk.
    7)Mushrooms readily absorb water, even from atmosphere – they should never be washed. Instead wipe them with a clean and damp cloth
    8)While storing green chilies, remove the stems. This will help the chilies to stay fresh for a longer time
    9)Cut the top of the carrot and store in air tight bag. This will keep it fresh for a longer period!Put the bananas in a black plastic bag before keeping it in the refrigerator – skin will not turn black and they will come out yellow even after a week! Lemon juice added to carrot cooking water will help keep the color bright.
    10)Reduce the burning sensation after cutting green chillies by keeping the fingers in a bowl of cold milk added with some sugar
    11)Cut the top of the carrot and store in air tight bag. This will keep it fresh for a longer period!Put the bananas in a black plastic bag before keeping it in the refrigerator – skin will not turn black and they will come out yellow even after a week! Lemon juice added to carrot cooking water will help keep the color bright!
    12)To keep celery fresh for long time, wrap it in aluminum foil and place in the refrigerator
    13)To preserve green peas, keep them in a polythene bag in the freezer
    14)If the lemon or lime is hard, put it in warm water for 5-10 minutes to make it easier to squeeze
    15)Place overripe tomatoes in cold water and add some salt. Overnight they will become firm and fresh

  114. tweeted-http://twitter.com/creativesana

    spreading it thro my blog(on top of my posts)-http://creativesanyukta.blogspot.com/


  115. Tip15-
    Some recipes use yogurt/curd which may curdle while cooking. To prevent curdling, don’t add salt until yogurt/curd is cooked

  116. Tip14-
    Add a few drops of lemon juice,pinch of sugar and 1/2 tsp. ghee while cooking rice to make the it whiter and keep the grain unbroken..

  117. Tip13-
    To make soft chappathis or rotis , Add fresh yogurt to knead the dough
    instead of water , and cover the dough with a light moist cloth,. And also after making chappathi’s cover them with a soft cloth

  118. Tip12-
    a)Rinse measuring cup in hot water before using syrup, oil, etc. Will pour out clean and not stick to cup.
    b)or just oil ur measuring cups/spoons and then measure and pour liquids-works great for honey,syrups…

  119. Tip11-
    Dry nus: To chop dry nuts, place them in the fridge for half an hour before cutting. Take the nuts out and cut them with a hot knife (dip it in hot water before cutting). This helpful kitchen tip helps the process of cutting dry fruits easier.I usually store my opened packets of dry nuts in refrigerator they stay fresh longer


  120. Tip10-
    To clean the oven, apply a paste of sodium bicarbonate and water on the walls and floor of the oven and keep the oven on low heat for about half an hour. Dried food can then be easily removed

  121. Tip9-Poilshing-
    a)Tamarind is an excellent polish for brass and copper items. Rub a slab of wet tamarind with some salt sprinkled on it on the object to be polished.
    b)Apply tootpaste to brushand clean and sparkle ur silverware
    c)in a big glass tray cover the base with aluminium foil and pour hot water and soak ur silverware for 1hr.remove,clean with soapy water and pat dry..repeat if more tarnished

  122. Tip8=
    a)Add a teaspoon of Semolina / Rava and 1 teaspoon of Rice flour to the 1 cup of wheat flour while kneading to make puris crisp..
    b)To make fritters/bhajiyas crisper add 2-3 tblsp of rice flour along with besan/chickpea flour to make crispy fritters

  123. Tip7-
    While boiling milk, always add a little water at the base of the vessel to avoid the milk from sticking at the bottom.

  124. Tip6-
    If poppy seeds are used in grinding, slighty dry roast them in a skillet and soak it in hot water for 10 to 15 minutes,

  125. Tip5-
    a)If you add half a tsp of fenugreek seeds to the lentil and rice mixture while soaking, dosas will be more crisp
    b)add 1-2 tblsp of cooked rice or soaked poha while grinding the urad dal for idlis to make idli soft and fluffy
    c)to ferment idli batter nicely add salt to it and keep for fermentig in warm oven with oven light on .

  126. Tip4-
    Before pouring milk into a pot for boiling rub butter/ghee along the top edge and inside lip of the pot. When the milk foams up, it will stop over spilling when it hits the butter.

  127. Tip3-
    Onions and Potatoes and garlic-
    a)Don’t store potatoes and onions together. Potatoes will rot quickly if stored with onions.
    b)Place a raw peeled potato in the bowl, it will absorb the extra salt.
    c)Potatoes soaked in salt water for 20 minutes will bake more rapidly
    d)To cut onions without tears,place whole onion in refrigerator for 1/2 hr beforecooking..i usaully place the 1-2 onions the night before for using the onions next day
    e)Soak garlic cloves in cold water for 1hr and then remove the peel comes off easily

  128. Tip-2
    EGG-A smooth shiny egg shell is a sign of old age. Fresh eggs have a chalky rough shell.
    When in doubt about an egg, make this test: add 2 tsps. salt to a cup of water and put the egg in it. A fresh egg will sink, a doubtful egg will float
    Egg peeling off: Make a small hole in the egg by piercing a pin before boiling it. You will be able to remove its skin very easily.

  129. tip1)
    Lemons will stay fresh longer if you store them in a bowl of cold water in the fridge. They’ll keep up to 3 months this way..try it works

  130. domestic diva says:

    My favorite tip: coat the inside of your measuring cup with a very thin layer of oil before measuring peanut butter (or similar sticky ingredients). It slides right out!

  131. When cooking food, if you have to put chopped tomato in the pot in which you are cooking, what you can do is, Start cutting the tomato directly into the pot. The juices from the tomato fall directly into the pot, so you are not wasting the tomato. Dont worry about the flame of gas. It wont hurt. Initially you may not like my idea but once you start doing this it will help you.
    No need to chop the tomato on the cutting board. I used to waste all the juice from the tomato, when cutting on the board until I started cutting directly into the pot.
    Hope this trick helps everyone.

  132. My tip is for making upma mix for making instant upma later. Make a tadka/phodni with dry ingredients like mustard, urad dal, peanuts, red chillies, cloves, cinnamon etc. Add the rava to it and roast. Add salt sugar and switch off the flame. You can also add the dry dessicated coconut that you get in stores. Make this is big quantities and on a lazy morning, all you have to do it boil water and add this mix (I add 2 cups of water for 1 cup of the mix) and also add frozen veggies if you want. I have used these mixes extensively when traveling. I think you can keep this mix in the refrigerator and use it for long. Also you can make the perfect upma if you use the rice cooker.

  133. Rubbing a cut onion on a warm cast iron tava or pan meant for dosa will save a lot of time in making crispy and non sticky dosa. This helps me a lot when at times dosa gets too stuck in the pan..Thanks for this giveaway…

  134. Katrina Brady says:

    Use a pinch of allspice when browning ground beef. It will remove that “wild” kind of flavor and give it something special.

    sweetpeg at gmail dot com

  135. Use a pinch of salt + sugar to chickpeas .. incase u havent soaked it over nite…
    Soaking 3-4 hours and adding this combination of sugar+ salt can cook the chickpeas instantly…

  136. Dont throw the lemon peels away after squeezing them. If u live in the sunny region , dry them up.. using natural light..
    Put a lemon occasionally at the base of ur cooker filled with water and we can gradually maintain it.

  137. One tip I would love to share with u Alka , is use our regular toothpaste to clean the sliver ware. Need not search or spend in expensive cleaning wares.
    Toothpaste does wonders..

    Use some toothpaste over a soft piece of cloth and rub them over the silver ware or use a tooth brush to clean the hard grins.

  138. This is how to tell if your eggs are fresh:
    Place the egg in a cup of cold water
    1) A fresh egg will sit horizontal at the bottom of the cup
    2) A stale egg will sit vertically
    3) If it floats, you should throw it away
    Elenna {AT] sbcglobal [DOT] net

  139. I posted this on my blog
    Elenna {AT] sbcglobal [DOT] net

  140. One tip I have is for cooking bacon. If you run bacon under cold water before frying, it wll reduce shrinkage. Not sure why, but it works.
    Elenna {AT] sbcglobal [DOT] net

  141. Delegate a particular day to cook some meals to freeze for the month. It saves the day when you’re tired and don’t wan’t to cook!

    heatheranne99 at gmail dot com

  142. To keep cheese from sticking to the grater rub it first with some oil or spray it with a little non-stick spray. Much easier to clean later this way.

  143. When you only want to eat or use half an avocado, cut it in half long ways, and leave the pit in one of the sides. Then wrap the unused half in clingwrap and leave in the fridge for 1 to 3 days (depending on ripeness of avocado). Leaving the pit in keeps it a lot fresher!

  144. Shared about the giveaway at my blog(At the top) — http://pangravykadaicurry.blogspot.com/

    Email Address – PanGravyKadaiCurry@gmail.com

  145. How to remove an Avocado Stone(A trick I learnt from Food N/W)? After halving an avocado, give a thwack on the stone either with a Santoku knife or Butcher’s knife. Then Gently twist sideways to remove the stone. Before knowing this,I used to dig the stone out using fingers and it was a messy job.

  146. Ravi santlani says:

    Mead or Soam-Rass as mentioned in hindu books, is a honey wine, low alcoholic, is good for men and womens health. It is considered good to drink same, for Young people and newly married couple.

  147. Tip2: How to eliminate the sour taste from Tamarind Rice(A TamilNadu Specialty)? While making the Tamarind Concentrate add 1/2 tsp of shaved jaggery(raw sugar).

  148. Tip1: How to make old and stone cold idlis soft?? Microwaving won’t do the trick. Just put back the Idlis in the Idli vessel and steam it for 5 minutes just as you would the Idli batter. No one would believe that those soft Idlis were hard like stones 5 minutes prior.

  149. This is just a little healthy tip-When making pasta use wheat pasta. You can not even tell the difference and it is better for you to eat.

    hillaryanna at yahoo dot com

  150. Ravi santlani says:

    While chopping Onion, i have always washed it with cold water after peeling off and chopped by taking off middle part .It gives less tears and easy onion cutting.
    Also, not, you will never have tear, if you cut onion under running water.

  151. Ravi santlani says:

    While pressure cooking food, if you want to check in middle, just take pressure cooker off the stove and put cold water on it. You can instantly open the cover and check the food. You will lose pressure in it, but will be able to check the food. You can then either cook or stop same if satisfied.

    Ravi Santlani

  152. Hera is a tip
    if u r not having siver polish in the store u can clean them with the ash coming from incenses,rub with the duster, mirror n glass table could be clean with viniger, rub it with news paper or kitchen paper, block of remaining solid cheese, rap in foil rather than cello paper .veg: could be kept in news papers in the frige ,to absorb the moisture.some days u can rub the sodapowder “a pinch”on u r teath 4 whitning

  153. Thanks for the giveaway, Alka. I love your blog.

    Here’s my tip. To use less oil while sauteing onions for upma or any other gravy, you can microwave the chopped onions for 2 mins and then saute it in oil, it takes less time and less oil. I sometimes use boiling water to cook my onions thoroughly and wait till all the water is evaporated before I add the other ingredients. This works especially well for kanda/batata poha.


  154. After boiling potatoes, let them cool down for a few minutes & start peeling off the skin by hand. You will see how easily the skin comes off. No need for a peeler. I do it all the time. Try it friends…..

  155. baking soda will remove coffee and tea stains from a mug or tea cup.I hear that if you have a lit candle burning while you cut an onion the gas the onion puts out will go to the flame and not burn your eyes,this is what my sister tells me so I plan on trying that sometime,she says you can just turn on the gas on your stove and that works too.I have yet to find one of these onion tricks that actually work.

  156. Hi Alka, i love your blog thanks for the give away. Here is my tip, To keep the store brought masalas or home made sambar powder/rasam powder fresh for long time after opening the packet store them in freezer.

  157. something i find useful is my cheese grater- for lots of foods other than cheese. i grate baby food, veggies, chocolate, etc. our grater really gets used at our house!

  158. Here I am,trying my luck once again!!

    If the food gets burnt while cooking,do not try to stir it.Just place the whole kadai/pan in a big bowl of water for a while and then carefully remove the part which is not burnt.This way,the food doesn’t taste burnt!!

    P.S – Speaking from experience.Shhhh