Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Indian Kitchen Tips and Healthy Cooking

Here is the A-Z of Indian Kitchen Tips and other healthy cooking home remedies for your daily kitchen needs.
  • Almonds: To remove the skin of almonds easily, soak them in hot water for 15-20 minutes.
  • Apples: Apply some lemon juice on the cut surface of the apple to avoid browning. They will look fresh for a longer time.
  • Biscuits: If you keep a piece of blotting paper at the bottom of the biscuit container, it will keep biscuits fresh for a longer time.
  • Butter: Avoid the use of butter. If it is essential to use, use butter containing low saturated fat or with plant stanols (which avoid absorption of cholesterol by our body) or similar substitutes.
  • Banana: Apply mashed banana over a burn on your body for a cooling effect.
  • Bee and Scorpion Sting Relief: Apply a mixture of 1 pinch of chewing tobacco and 1 drop of water. Mix and apply directly and immediately to the sting. Cover with band aid to hold in place. The pain will go away in a few minutes.
  • Bitter Gourd (Karela): Slit Karelas inthe middle and apply a mixture of salt, wheat flour and curd all round. Keep aside for 1/2 an hour and then cook. This will take away some of the bitterness.
  • Celery: To keep celery fresh for a long time, wrap it in aluminium foil and place it in the refrigerator.
  • Burnt Food: Place some chopped onion in the vessel having burnt food, pour boiling water in it, keep for 5 minutes and then clean.
  • Chilli Powder: Keeping a small piece of hing (asafoetida) in the same container will store chilli powder for a long time.
  • Chopping: Use a wooden board to chop. It will not blunt the knife. Don't use a plastic board, small plastic pieces may be cut with the vegetables which is harmful for health.
  • Coriander/Mint: You can use dried coriander and mint leaves in coarse powder form in vegetable curry or chutney, if fresh ones are not available. To keep them fresh for a longer time, wrap them in a muslin cloth and keep in a fridge.
  • Cockroaches: Another useful kitchen tip. This requires you to put some boric powder in the corners of your kitchen and in other places where you notices cockroaches entering your home. Cockroaches will soon leave your house.
  • Coconut: Immerse coconut in water for 1/2 an hour to remove its husk.
  • Dry Fruits: To chop dry fruits, place them in the fridge for half an hour before cutting. Take the fruits out and cut them with a hot knife (dip it in hot water before cutting). This helpful kitchen tip helps the process of cutting dry fruits easier and faster.
  • Dough/Rolling pin: If the dough sticks to the rolling pin, place it in freezer for a few minutes.
  • Egg peeling off: Make a small hole in the egg by piercing a pin before boiling it. You will be able to remove its skin very easily.
  • Egg fresh: This healthy cooking tip is quite helpful. Immerse the egg in a pan of cool salted water. If it sinks, it is fresh; if it rises to the surface, it is old and should not be cooked.
  • Garlic: Garlic skin comes off easily if the garlic cloves are slightly warmed before peeling.
  • Ghee: Avoid the use of ghee. If it is necessary for a certain dish, substitute it with canola oil or some other healthy vegetable oil. Even for making halwa, you can partly substitute it with oil. This healthy cooking tip helps prevent heart disease and other health problems.
  • Green Chillies: To keep the chillies fresh for a longer time, remove the stems before storing.
  • Green Peas: To preserve green peas, keep them in a polythene bag in the freezer.
  • Idlies and Dosas: Here are some of the best kitchen tips for South Indian specialities. Place a betel (paan) leaf over the leftover idli and dosa batter to prevent them from turning sour. Do not beat idli batter too much, as the air which has collected during fermentation will escape. If you add half a tsp of fenugreek seeds to the lentil and rice mixture while soaking, dosas will be more crisp.
  • Fruits: To ripen fruits, wrap them in newspaper and put in a warm place for 2-3 days. The ethylene gas they emit will make them ripe.
  • Frying: Avoid deep frying. Substitute deep frying with stir frying or oven bake. Don't pour the oil, but make a habit of spraying the oil in the utensil for cooking. Heat the utensil first, then add oil. This way oil spreads well. You will need to use less oil this way. Not only will your family be healthy though these healthy cooking tips, but you will also save a lot of money.
  • Left Overs: Don't throw away the foods left over. Store them in the fridge. Use them in making tasty dishes like paranthas the next morning. You may also feed them to the birds and other stray animals.
  • Lemon/Lime: If the lemon or lime is hard, put it in warm water for 5-10 minutes to make it easier to squeeze.
  • Lizards: Hang a peacock feather, lizards will leave your house.
  • Milk: Moisten the base of the vessel with water to reduce the chances of milk sticking at the bottom. Keep a spoon in the vessel while boiling milk at medium heat. This will stop the milk from sticking to the bottom of the vessel. Adding half a teaspoon of sodium bicarbonate to the milk while boiling ensures that the milk will not get spoilt even if you don't put it in the fridge.
  • Mixer/Grinder: Grind some common salt in your mixer/grinder for some time every month. This will keep your mixer blades sharp.
  • Mosquitoes: Put a few camphor tablets in a cup of water and keep it in the bed room near your bed, or in any place with mosquitoes. Mosquitoes will soon dissappear.
  • Noodles: When the noodles are boiled, drain all the hot water and add cold water. This way all the noodles will get separated.
  • Onions: To avoid tears, cut the onions into two parts and place them in water for 15 minutes before chopping them. Wrap the onions individually in a newspaper and store in a cool and dark place to keep them fresh for long time.
  • Oven: Look through the oven window to conserve energy, as the oven temperature drops by 25 degrees every time its door is opened. To clean the oven, apply a paste of sodium bicarbonate and water on the walls and floor of the oven and keep the oven on low heat for about half an hour. Dried food can then be easily removed.
  • Paneer: To keep paneer fresh for several days, wrap it in blotting paper while storing in the refrigerator. Do not fry paneer, immerse it in boiling water to make it soft and spongy.
  • Papad: Papads should be bake in a microwave oven to save oil and kitches gas. The best kitchen tip to store papads is to wrap the papads in polythene sheet and place them in the dal or rice containers. This will prevent them from drying and breaking.
  • Pickles: To prevent the growth of fungus in pickles, burn a small grain of asafoetida over burning coal and invert the empty pickle jar over it for some time. Only then, put the pickle in the jar.
  • Popcorn: Keep the maize/corn seeds in the freezer and pop while still frozen to get more fluffy, bigger popcorn.
  • Potato: To bake potatoes quickly, place them in salt water for 15 minutes before baking. Use the skin of boiled potatoes to wipe mirrors sparkling clean. Don't store potatoes and onions together. Potatoes will rot quickly if stored with onions.
  • Refrigerator: To prevent formation of ice, rub table salt on the insides of your freezer.
  • Rice: Add a few drops of lemon juice in the water before boiling the rice to make rice whiter. Add a teaspoon of canola oil to the water before boiling the rice to separate each grain after cooking. Don't throw away the rice water after cooking. Use it to make soup or add it in making dal (lentils). Add 5 grams of dried powdered mint leaves to 1kg of rice. This kitchen tip will help keep insects at bay. You may also put a small paper packet of boric powder in the container of rice to keep insects at bay.
  • Samosa: Bake them instead of deep frying to make them fat free. Don't fry the filling of potato masala. Preserve the samosas in the freezer. Before eating, take them out of the freezer two hours in advance and bake them over low temperature in the oven.
  • Sugar: Put 2-3 cloves in the sugar container to keep ants at bay.
  • Tadka: Use sprouted mustard seeds (rayee) and fenugreek (methi) seeds for your tadkas. Both of them when sprouted have more nutritional value. Also this will add flavour to the dish and is more beneficial to health, besides giving a decorative look to the dish.
  • Tomato: To remove the skin of tomatoes, place them in warm water for 5-10 minutes. The skin can then be easily peeled off. When tomatoes are not available or too costly, substitute with tomato puree or tomato ketchup/sauce. Place overripe tomatoes in cold water and add some salt. Overnight they will become firm and fresh.
  • Tamarind: Tamarind is an excellent polish for brass and copper items. Rub a slab of wet tamarind with some salt sprinkled on it on the object to be polished.
  • Gargling with tamarind water is recommended for a sore throat.
  • Utensils: Use nonstick utensils. Thick bottomed utensils are better as they get uniformly heated. For electric stoves, use flat bottom utensils. Add a little bit of common salt to the washing powder for better cleaning of utensils.
  • Vegetables: Don't discard the water in which the vegetables are soaked or cooked. Use it to make soup or gravy. To keep the vegetables fresh for a longer time, wrap them in newspaper before putting them in the fridge. Another healthy cooking kitchen tip is to chop vegetables only when you are ready to use them. Don't cut them too early as it would spoil their nutritional value.
  • Sink (Blocked): To clear the blocked drain pipe of your kitchen sink, mix 1/2 cup sodium bicarbonate in 1 cup vinegar and pour it into the sink, and pour about 1 cup water. In an hour the drain pipe will open.
  • Soup Salty: Place a raw peeled potato in the bowl, it will absorb the extra salt.
  • Yoghurt (Home Made): To set yogurt or curd in winter, place the container in a warm place like over the oven or voltage stabliser.
  • Yogurt: If the yogurt or curd has become sour, put it in a muslin cloth and drain all the water. Then add milk to make it as good as fresh in taste. Use the drained water in making tasty gravy for vegetables or for basen curry. To keep the yogurt fresh for many days, fill the vessel containing yogurt with water to the brim and refrigerate. Change the water daily.

These Indian kitchen tips and healthy cooking tips are sure to make the process of cooking and taking care of your kitchen and home much easier. Do you have any other useful kitchen tips to offer??


  1. Thanks for all those wonderful tips.

  2. have a very good information on a good site would be useful to people thank you.

  3. thanks you have made such a good list of tips these are really helpful thanks for your effort really appreciated .keep blogging

  4. WOW.. great tips.. thanks


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