14 Who-Knew? Uses for Your Microwave

When it comes to kitchen appliances, we all have a pretty good idea what our fridge, stove, microwave and dishwasher are capable of. These "14 Who-Knew? Uses for Your Microwave," are going to make you look at your microwave in a whole new light.

Most of us, have a pretty good idea what our kitchen microwave is used for, it is a useful appliance to make things go a bit quicker in the kitchen, its great for defrosting, cooking and warming up foods, and is most often looked at as a time saver in this busy world of ours. The following are just a couple of the great kitchen tips that you may not have considered when looking at this useful kitchen appliance, and include disinfecting and deodorizing kitchen sponges, this simple trick will make better use of your kitchen sponges, rather than throwing them out when they've been used for a bit, soak the sponge in water spiked with white vinegar or lemon juice, heat the sponge in the microwave on high for one minute (use an oven mitt to remove the hot sponge from microwave), this kitchen trick also disinfects any sponges used for wiping any juices from raw chicken.

Another kitchen microwave tip can be for cooking an entire dinner in less than ten minutes, and this means a whole dinner, not a TV dinner. You can use the microwave for any recipes that uses braising, poaching or steaming, just subtract roughly three quarters of the cooking time, and remember to stir liquids frequently to redistribute the heat, and always take the food out about a minute or two early, as the food will continue after its taken out of the microwave.

The microwave is a great tool for cooking potatoes quickly. While the microwave won't give you a baked potato with a crisp skin, it will cook the average russet in about 4 minutes. You can simultaneously cook as many as will fit. (The general rule for heating more food is to check for doneness every 30 seconds beyond the regular cooking time.) Prick the potatoes all over with a fork and cook for 2 minutes. Turn them over and cook for 2 to 3 minutes longer. For mashed potatoes, be sure to heat the milk in the microwave before adding it.

The potato is a starchy, tuberous crop from the perennial nightshade family. In the Andes, where the potato is indigenous there are some other closely related cultivated potato species. Potatoes were introduced outside the Andes region approximately four centuries ago, and have since become an important part of much of the world's food supply. Popular potato dishes include mashed potatoes, whole baked potatoes,boiled or steamed potatoes, French fried potatoes or chips, cut into cubes and roasted potatoes, scalloped, diced, or sliced and fried (home fries), grated into small thin strips and fried (hash browns), grated and formed into dumplings, Rösti or potato pancakes.

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