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 blender).
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!).