Getting the Most Out of Our Daily Bread
by Glynis M. Belec
Freezing Food Staples
Avoiding Freezer Burn
Organizing Your Pantry
Maybe those last three slices of bread in the cupboard have gone stale. Perhaps you made too much toast for breakfast. Can't resist the day old bread bargain at the store? Don't know what to do with the excess? Here are a few ideas before you toss all the crumbs to our fine-feathered friends.
- So you left the rice cooking a little too long and now it's scorched. Place a slice of white bread in the pot on top of the rice while it is still hot then replace the lid. Wait five or so minutes. Remove the bread slice. The burned taste will be gone.
- Speaking of rice, if there is a little extra moisture in a pot of rice, remove it from the heat and place a piece of bread on top of the rice. Cover the pot. In a few minutes, the water should disappear.
- If you have leftover toast, don't toss it. Pop it into a freezer tight container and use for making dressing. You can either break up the toast immediately or do it when you make the dressing. Don't forget to label the container.
- Slightly stale bread is perfect for bread pudding. Butter about seven slices of the stale bread and line the bottom and sides of a buttered baking pan. Mix about a quart of milk, 3 eggs, 1/2 cup of sugar, 1/2 cup of raisins, 1/4 teaspoon of salt, 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon and 1 teaspoon of vanilla. If you like, add more buttered bread, but make sure it is submerged in the milk mixture. Cook at 350 degrees for about half an hour covered and then uncover it and bake for another half-hour.
- If your marshmallows have gone stale, place a couple of slices of fresh white bread into the bag and then seal it. Leave it for a couple of days and then remove the bread and enjoy the soft marshmallows!
- Do you love cabbage and brussel sprouts but hate the smell when they are cooking? Put a piece of white bread on top of the lid as the vegetables cook. It will absorb a lot of the odor.
- Does your smoke alarm sound when you are broiling meat in the oven? Stop the billowing smoke and splashing grease by placing two or three slices of bread in the drip pan. The bread will absorb the grease, decrease the smoke and lower the chance of the grease catching fire in the oven.
- Remove most dirty or greasy fingerprints from wallpapered walls by cutting off the crusts of a slice of white bread and rubbing the affected area.
- Put two slices of bread in the container of chocolate chip cookies and it will keep them fresher for days.
- If your brown sugar is hard, place a piece of bread in the container and in a few hours the brown sugar will return to its original softness.
- Use the end crust or heel as a spoon rest.
- Wad a couple of white pieces of bread into a ball and use as a sink stopper if you are desperate.
- Soak a piece of stale bread in vinegar and tape it over a bothersome callus or corn overnight. The corn will disappear.
- Attach a slice of bread using toothpicks to the side of a cut edge of cake. It will stop the cake from drying out.
- Buy bread on the day old shelf or use up your old bread to make croutons. Cube the bread. Spray with vegetable oil and then sprinkle with Italian or other seasonings. Package in an airtight container.
- Thread a cube of bread on the handle of a knife before chopping onions. This will absorb some of the odor and eliminate some of the tears.
- Hold a piece of bread in your mouth (between your teeth with the bread hanging out) as you chop onions. This will help absorb the odor and prevent tearing.
- Got a smudge on a suede purse or shoes? Take a piece of white bread. Rub the affected area gently with the bread. You might need a second slice to finish the job.
- Picking up tiny slivers of glass if you don't have a broom and dustpan handy can be easily done using a slice of bread. Press the bread over the area where the glass is. Be careful as you pick up the bread and then toss it in the garbage can.
- Dust your oil paintings by gently rubbing the surface with a piece of white bread.
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Take the Next Step:
- Before you toss out excess stale bread, try one of these tips or see if you can come up with additional ways to use it.
- See "Recipes for Sliced Bread" in The Dollar Stretcher Community
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