This morning I witnessed my son’s partner using a tea towel to wipe up a glass of spilled juice. After doing so rather than rinsing it, she then threw it down the laundry chute, which I suspect is why my tea towels of late even when freshly laundered don’t smell clean and sections of them feel hard. Are you familiar with any treatment for these tea towels that will remove the sour smell and restore their softness? Thanks, Shelley
Your best bet is to soak the tea towels in a bucket of 50/50 white vinegar and water. Leave for a few hours and then pour the entire contents into your washing machine. Wash and dry as usual. Vinegar does a great job at softening fabrics and even repelling static cling.
Plus, stains and food won’t show up on black tea and dish towels.
How can I prevent rice from sticking to the pot while cooking and ending up with a ball of ‘glump’ (one of your words)? Tim
One way to prevent rice from sticking to the pot is to cook it in the microwave. For one cup of rice, add two cups of water. Season and cook in microwave on high for 15 minutes or until water is absorbed — no sticky mess. If you prefer to cook rice on the stove, rinse the rice before you boil it (until the water becomes fairly clear). Add a little oil or butter to the pot (rice in a pot should not be overcooked). For one uncooked cup of rice, add three cups of water, simmer for 15 minutes.
• I want to share an activity that I like doing to get ready for Halloween company. Before my lunch guests arrive, I carve a face on an orange to look like a jack-o’-lantern. I hollow out the inside of the orange and fill the middle of the orange with cut up fruit such as grapes, apples and strawberry pieces. Each guest gets their own jack-o’-lantern appetizer. Jaclyn
• Pumpkin seeds are a must at this time of year. Hollow out a pumpkin, remove and clean about two cups of seeds. Toss seeds in one quarter cup melted butter, half teaspoon garlic salt and one quarter teaspoon Worcestershire sauce. Spread onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 250 degrees for about 45 minutes or until lightly browned. Store in airtight container.
Reena Nerbas is a rural Manitoba home economist is a lab coat - and she’s not afraid to use it. Keep your questions coming:
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition October 24, 2013