From time to time I run across a hint that you may or may not find helpful They are all found here in no particular order.


 Helpful? Hint Number 1 - Peeling Boiled Eggs  

Boiling Eggs - It is essential to boil eggs before peeling them. Everyone probably has a favorite way to boil eggs. Mine is to pin prick the larger end and then bring them to a rapid boil, turn off the heat, cover them, and let them age 15 to 20 minutes in the hot water. Then comes the messy part, the chore part, peeling them. 

Peeling Eggs - Here's how I was advised to do the peeling chore. First make the eggs cold by draining off the hot water and running cold water (soaking in ice water is best) over them until they are really cold. Next, drain off the water and put a cover on the pan. Now for the fun part, shake them gently for some time. You will see all the egg shells crack into thousands of tiny bits, some shells start to come off, others will come partly off. Remove the peeled ones, peel the partly peeled ones, put them aside, recover, and continue shaking the rest a little more.  More will start peeling. The shells that remain are easy to remove. It works much better than rolling them around one at a time and then laboriously peeling them. 

I should add that peeling eggs is still not one of my favorite tasks.  

An Update on Boiling Eggs - A recipe on the internet says adding a half teaspoon of Baking Soda to the water makes them peel even in easier. Large eggs work better than medium. I have no information about small or extra-large ones. I do know very fresh (day or two old) eggs do not peel easy and you should trash eggs that float. I think peeling ease varies with egg age but I don’t know the connection. I don’t and won’t boil enough eggs to find out either.

An Update on the Update - While getting the article ready I realized I have been adding salt, not baking soda, so I have no personal experience to report. I'll use baking soda next time if I remember and perhaps update this article.


Helpful? Hint Number 2 - Opening Packages  

Do you use boxes of crackers that have 4 plastic wrapped packages of crackers inside? Do you have trouble opening the inside plastic packages? Try this. I have found that the end of the plastic wrap opposite the front of the box (the end with the 'open here' label or tab for opening) is much easier to open than the end near front of the box. I have tried this on other cracker collections and it works on them, too. 

Another discovery is that “Tear here” or similar wording is not always the easy place to start tearing. Sometimes it is far easier to open the package from the other end. 

My advice is to try the other end or the other way if the first end or way is hard. It may be much easier.


This Helpful? Hint was originally printed in the August 25, 2015 issue of The Lewis County Herald of Vanceburg, Kentucky.


Helpful? Hint Number 3 - Refrigerating Bananas 

I like bananas with cereal in the morning. I have trouble finding bananas. They always seem to be too big, too ripe, or too green. My bananas seem to ripen much faster beginning immediately after I get them home. I got to wondering why they cannot be refrigerated and so asked Google about it.

Chiquita Banana - Thanks to Chiquita Banana (circa 1944) as a cartoon Carmen Miranda, I did not put them in the refrigerator. You can see and listen to Chiquita here: The voice is not Carmen Miranda.

Refrigerating Bananas - Back to refrigerating bananas; the internet seemed to think it was OK conditionally. I decided to give it a try. Here’s what I found. Do not refrigerate a banana that is still ripening. Once a banana is ripened to where you like it, it is OK to refrigerate it and it will keep much longer. It will, however, start looking horrible on the outside; getting very black and spoiled looking. The flesh inside however will quite presentable and will taste like a fresh just right banana.

I put a just-right banana in my refrigerator and left it there for about a week. As predicted, it turned horribly ugly and black on the outside. I peeled it. The flesh had a blackish tint to it. The banana went into the trash can, not on my cereal. I agree with Chiquita; do not put bananas in the refrigerator.


Helpful? Hint Number 4 - Warming Boiled Eggs 

Don't try this at home. After peeling several boiled eggs I store them in the refrigerator. When I want one I usually give it 20 seconds in the microwave to warm it up. The white is uausally still cool. Yesterday I decided to go 30 seconds. After the 'ding' I went to the table with a warm white of an egg. I sat down and took a bite and it exploded in my mouth, burning my upper lip.

I think this is what happened. The white of an egg does not contain as much moisture as the yolk so it heats less and slower. The white also seems to block the water vapor (steam) from escaping the fast heating yolk. So when I bit into the egg as I got close to the yolk the white could not withstand the pressure buildup. Yolk and white went all over and the escaping steam found my lip. It's doesn't hurt but swollen a little and annoying. My hint: Stick with 20 seconds or less nuke warming of a boiled egg and then wait the 'suggested 1 minute to allow heat to distribute evenly' before eating.


Helpful Hint Number 5 - About Tooth Care

Try This at Home! There is no question here. I am undergoing a transition from OEM teeth to Aftermarket supplier teeth. The result is a hint that I cannot follow. It must be followed from the beginning of arrival of your Original Equipment Manufacturer teeth, baby teeth onward. The Aftermarket replacements (partials, plates, dentures), whatever you call them, will never measure up to the God given originals. The hint is this – DO ALL YOU CAN TO KEEP THOSE ORIGINALS!

That means brushing after meals, flossing, checkups, mouth washing, and all the boring things recommended. Be careful choosing products. They are all the best; just ask the manufacturer. Of course that is not true so you should ask your dentist. That’s not always good either as salesmen often provide dentists with free handouts. Free samples are good for the dentist, good for the salesman, good for his company, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they are good for you.

Note: OEM and Aftermarket are terms used in the sale of automobiles. OEM stuff comes with the car. Aftermarket stuff is what you use to repair you auto after you own it. I am using the terms as follows: When it comes to us, OEM is synonymous with God, except God does a far better job. Aftermarket is synonymous with the medical profession, its members, institutions, and products.