Guest Post: Claudz

05 November 2014|

How do I open my wine
and other kitchen questions:

Hello Ellie Love readers. I’m Claudine from Purple Lips and Perfect Smiles. I recently launched a second blog aimed at the food enthusiast
Tables & Thyme.
It’s for anyone who enjoys food – whether you’re making food or eating out at a
restaurant. For this guest post I decided to share a few kitchen cheats with
you. Knowing Ellie Love’s readers, you’re all fabulous ladies who don’t spend
all day in a kitchen. You may not have all the impressive gizmos and gadgets
that a chef would have. And that’s ok!
What to do if you
don’t have a rolling pin?
*confession – I don’t have one!
You decided to make your own pie. Or you’re bravely baking
biscuits for Christmas. But you don’t have a rolling pin to roll out your
pastry. You have a few options. Use a wine bottle (there is always one in my
kitchen), preferably a flat, evenly shaped one. Or use a glass (hand with care)
or any large jar (think big mayo). You can even use a pipe (in the event that
you have one of those lying around). Whatever you decide to use, remember to
clean it and dust with flour to avoid the pastry sticking.

I don’t have a whisk,
what can I use?
The aim of whisking liquid is to allow air into it. Keep
this in mind and you should be fine. That’s why you would rather not use a
spoon or something flat. For simple mixing (think scrambled eggs or pancake
batter) you can use a fork. If you want to whisk egg whites for meringues or
cream for a mousse then you can try with a fork, but honestly, I wouldn’t
recommend it. You can use any other electric attachment (such as a hand
What to use if you
don’t have a sieve?
If you’re baking and the recipe requires that you sieve the
flour, you don’t have to be too concerned. The aim of this is to lighten the
flour and introduce air after it was stored in a bag. You can give the dry
ingredients a good shake or mix with a fork. If you have a colander, it will
also serve the same purpose.
If you need to strain liquid then a coffee plunger will work
really well. Once more, the colander can do the job too (just be cautious if
you have larger holes or grooves, you don’t want the big lumps getting through).

I need my wine but I
don’t have an opener!

This will teach you – buy screw top! Before you go to the
extreme of breaking the bottle and risking splinters of glass in your drink,
try one of these options. Remove the foil at the top of the bottle. Place the
wine bottle in your thick soled shoe, where your heel would go (if you don’t
have a shoe, fold a towel into a thick piece and wrap around the bottom of the
wine bottle). Bang the bottom of the bottle (safely protected by the shoe or
towel) against a wall. The bottle must be perpendicular to the wall.  Repeat with slightly more force until the
cork begins to pop out. Make sure you stop before if pops out all the way
otherwise your precious wine will spill!

Often used but not my favourite option is to push the cork
into the wine. Personally, I find this a difficult frustrating method that is
better for the stronger, more patient wine drinkers.
How much to use –
measuring without a measuring cup:
Did you know that the palm of a girl’s hand fits ¼ cup? If
you need a cup of rice, measure four handfuls. If you pinch your fingers
together – that literally is a pinch – perfect for salt measurements.

You can also use a regular size tea cup – they are usually
around 250ml which equals a cup.

For a teaspoon, hold your hand out, palm side up, relax your
hand as if you’re asking for something (cup it slightly). That little hollow in
the middle is equal to 1 teaspoon.

There you go – 5 handy tips for the woman who doesn’t have
it all (in the kitchen anyway). I hope that these have been useful to you!
Thanks Cals for having me on the blog today. I cannot
wait to hear all about your USA trip (and to see those cowboy boots!). 


  1. Oh my goodness! I love this post Claudine! This is so me in the kitchen. I never seem to have what I need. I am excited to start following your food blog so that I can get ideas. I am a very picky eater and my husband is not!

  2. Re: whisking without a whisk. You can pop your stuff in a large mason jar and shake it! Works well for cream; don't over-do it though, you'll end up with butter!! I keep an old muslin baby blanket in the kitchen for straining things. You can also use a screw and a claw hammer to remove a cork. Screw the screw into the cork, use the claw of the hammer to grip the screw and pull slowly.

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About me

I'm Caley a thirty-something wife & mummy from Durban, South Africa. Ellie Love Blog is all about me, my family and our beautiful life.


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