Tips and Tricks

Soaking With Grapefruit Seed Extract (GSE) Water
Soak non-organic and organic lettuce, vegetables, and fruit in GSE water. This helps remove pesticides and any residue from people handling the food before we bought it.

Use 7–10 drops per liter of water. Rinse fruits and vegetables before and after soaking. Soak most fruits and vegetables for about twenty minutes. Most fruits with peels do not need to be soaked unless the peel is used for zest or it remains on the fruit (such as a slice of lemon in tea). Soak fruits separate from vegetables, and soak tomatoes and grapes separate from anything else.

Soak lettuce and any fruit or vegetable that gets waterlogged for less time. Some people never soak mushrooms and strawberries while others soak them for a minute or two.

Ripen Fruit
Put unripe fruit in a brown paper bag with an apple slice. The apple releases ethylene gas, which helps fruit ripen.

Cut Onions
Store onions in the refrigerator and cut them under cold running water to avoid tears. This is easy if slicing, but difficult if dicing.

Peel Tomatoes
Boil enough water so that, when dropped in, the tomatoes are covered. Drop tomato in for 10–15 seconds. Remove. Run under cold water to cool. The skin peels right off.

Peel, Crush, Press, Mince Garlic
To peel a garlic clove, put it on a cutting board under the side of a large knife and press down on the knife until the clove is crushed. The peel is easily removed and discarded. The crushed clove can be used as is or, if a finer texture is needed, it can be minced or finely minced. To mince, use the knife to cut the crushed clove into tiny pieces. Or put the crushed clove through a garlic press, which is sometimes called “pressed” or “squeezed.”

Peel Broccoli Stalks
The inner part of the thick, main stalk can be eaten. It is sweet and tender if peeled first. Peel the outer layer by cutting up into it from the bottom. Hold it against the knife with the thumb and peel up toward the head. This leaves the lighter middle intact.

Revive leafy Greens
If leafy greens have wilted, cut or tear them up and put them in a bowl of cold water. They will be crisp again in 10–15 minutes.

Clean a Burned Pan
First, try a nylon scrubber (like steel wool, but orange and yellow). If that doesn’t work, fill the pot with hot water and some dish liquid and soak overnight. If that still doesn’t work, fill the pot with a solution of 1 teaspoon baking soda or cream of tartar per quart of water and bring to a boil. Boil for 5 minutes or so.

Adjust Flavors
If food is too salty: add sour or water (or tofu or potato).
If food is too sweet: add salt and a touch of bitter and/or sour.
If food is too pungent: add oil, salt and a touch of sweet.
If food is too bitter: increase all of the other flavors – easy on the pungent.

Tips for High Altitude Baking
Decrease leavening
Add egg
Increase liquid
Decrease sugar
Don’t overbeat eggs or over-mix batters
Eggs at room temperature
Increase baking temperature

Prevent Guacamole from getting brown
Cover the guacamole tightly with saran wrap so that no air gets in between the food and the plastic so it stays green until the next day.

Keep nuts from going rancid
Put the nuts that go rancid easily (like cashews or macadamia nuts), into a zip log bag and freeze. This way they stay fresh a lot longer. You can just take them out of the freezer when needed.

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