No Sour Cream?

Substitue equal amount of plain or a flavored yogurt – depending on what you’re making. I’ve used both and they work wonderfully. One time I was making a sour cream coffeecake and the sour cream in my fridge was way past the expiration date so I used lemon yogurt instead. It was great!

Crusty, Stuck Food

It just won’t come off the dishes, right? Well, soak them in cold water for a while and it’ll come off much, much easier. My mother taught me that one. Thanks mom!

Storing Tomatoes

This is simple: never in the fridge, it deadens the flavor. Store them in a bowl on the counter. They look nice there, too.

Where Can I Let My Dough Rise?

This is sometimes a pain in the butt for me, too. Where can I leave a bowl of dough where it won’t get knocked around and still keep it warmish. Well I got an idea. . .


While you’re getting your ingredients ready, preheat your oven to 200 – 250 degrees for about 15 minutes. Make your dough, but place it in a container that is oven proof. Cover the top with a dampened cotton towel, or plastic, etc., and then place in the oven. MAKE SURE THE OVEN IS OFF! I also prop the door with a wooden spoon so the oven isn’t too hot for the dough.


I’ve also placed the covered bowl on top of my fridge because that’s a warm spot, too.

Room Temperature

When a recipe calls for room temperature eggs, butter, etc., the best way to do this is to leave the items out on the counter for 30 – 60 minutes, depending on what time of year it is. This is pretty safe to do for 60 minutes in the cooler months, but in the warmer months, 30 minutes should do it.


Butter blends/mixes much easier when you let it get to room temperature. I sometimes nuke it, but more often then not, I accidentally melt it instead!

Hardboiling Eggs

Place the amount of eggs needed into a pot large enough to hold them comfortably. Carefully add cold water to cover them about an inch.


Place on stove and crank heat to high. As soon water comes to a full boil, remove from heat, place on a rack, cover and let sit undisturbed for 30 minutes.


Using lid, strain/drain hot water out, place pan into sink and run cold water until it keeps overflowing in pot for about a minute. Peel eggs and place on a paper towel or clean dish towel to dry off a bit. Now they’re ready.