*Kitchen TIP* Wilted Stink Celery? No Thanks! Keep your Celery Fresh for Week!

Don’t you hate it when you open the vegetable crisper in your refrigerator only to find, limp, faded and sad looking celery? Suddenly adding celery to your salad doesn’t sound so appealing!

Keeping your celery super fresh and crispy for weeks is as easy as wrapping it up in tin foil. Who knew right? I have been doing this for months and I must say that it truly is the greatest tip I have ever found. Who wants to pay money for something that doesn’t last long enough to use it all?

Do NOT wash the celery, simply remove the plastic wrapping your celery comes in, then proceed to take a generous piece of tin foil and wrap the celery up in it tightly. Each time you use the celery re-wrap it back in the same tin foil. Your celery will last for many more weeks than it conventionally has, and it will look just as great and remain as crisp.

You will want to do this as soon as you get home from the grocery store to help slow down the aging process as soon as possible. This is quick, easy, and painless what more could you ask for? Give it a try! I would love to hear how it works for you!


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To Eat the Egg or to NOT Eat the Egg… That is the Question!

If you are like us egg are either feast or famine in your house. We either go through them like water or they expire. Well lately it’s been expiration city. I found eggs for a sweet price at one store and I forgot I had already bought some at another store so then during the “no one’s eating eggs” season I had two dozen eggs that were expired.

I don’t know about you but I hate the idea of wasting food even eggs, and I hate eggs. But a chicken worked really hard to make the egg that are now expired and the money we spent is now wasted too! No one wins!

All of these Eggs were bad! Bummer!

The good news is even if the carton indicated that your eggs are expired they still might be good and maybe good for longer than you think!

Here is a good way to check if your eggs are expired or not.
  1. Fill up a large mixing bowl full of cool water and place a few eggs at a time in the bowl of water. Don’t overcrowd the bowl just a few will do. 
  2. If the eggs rise to the top of the bowl then they need to be thrown away. If the eggs sink they are still good. 
  3. Don’t judge the carton by one egg try them all out because you may have a few that are still good.
Bad Eggs! Bummer!

So how do you know the egg is bad because it rises to the top of the water? The reason the egg rises to the top of the water is because the white of the egg has started to evaporate which is leaving the egg hollow. The lighter the egg the quicker it rises to the top of the water. If the egg rises it needs to be thrown away. If it sinks you still have time, but I wouldn’t wait too long. 

Good Eggs!

Boil the older eggs or even fry them up if you are in a pinch.  Better yet have breakfast for dinner to use up those eggs. It’s an inexpensive meal and it’s a great way to get rid of eggs without them going to waste.

If you are still a little nervous about the egg let your nose be the judge! It probably won’t fail you, but I have found the bowl of water trick to work every time!

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Canned Verses Homemade… Which One Is Cheaper?

Over the last year I have been buying a lot of canned chicken from Sam’s Club. I buy the Members Mark brand which comes in a 5 pack. Each can is 13oz for a total price of $9.98 (We don’t pay sales tax on food in Texas).

A few days ago our grocery store HEB had whole fryer chickens on sale for .67cent per pound. I decided to buy one and do an experience to see if it’s cheaper to buy a whole chicken, cook it myself, remove it from the bones, and separate it into 2 cup servings, then freeze or was it cheaper to stick to the cans and not worry about all the work? 

Don’t get me wrong I knew it was pretty obvious what the outcome would be, but I wanted to know the numbers. We had friends over for dinner and a whole chicken was left over so I thought what the heck! Let’s see what we can find out!!

The chicken I purchased was 5lbs. for a total of $3.35. which is .67 per pound. After I cooked the chicken it weighed exactly 4lbs bringing the total cost up to about .84 cents per pound. After I removed all the skin and bones the chicken meat weighed 2.1 pounds bringing the total up to $1.59/lb. OUCH in that case you are almost better off buying boneless chicken breast and forgetting about the hassle of de-boning the chicken. I can normally get boneless chicken breast between $1.50-$1.99/lb.
  • Sam’s club is 5 cans for a total of 65 ounces for $9.98 
  • Homemade deboned fryer is 33 ounces for $3.35
  • Sam’s club is .15cents per ounces
  • Homemade is .10 cents per ounces

The difference between buying canned verses homemade is a .05 cents savings per ounce when you go homemade. OK so .05 cents doesn’t seem like much but when you consider 1 pound is 16 ounces 16x.05 cents = a savings of .80 per pound.

Almost $1 a pound … I will take a little extra work on a Sunday afternoon to save some money. I over paid on my 5 cans of chicken buy $3.25 OUCH!

I can also see buying the boneless chicken breast when they are on sale and saving myself a ton of time and work!

If you make your own chicken broth you have the leftovers to bring down the cost of your chicken. You can’t beat a freebie mixed into that equation!

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Christmas Gift Card Savings Plan

A year or so ago my friend Krista gave me a great idea that she lives by. I thought it was such a great idea that I am going to give it a try this year. She calls it her Christmas Gift Card Savings Plan.

Every payday she buys a gift card that does not have an expiration date like for instance a Wal-Mart Gift Card. She stores her gift cards in one place and then stores a sheet of the gift card numbers in a different place just in case something happens to them.

She knows her daughter Casey loves Macy’s so she will go buy a $25 gift card there one pay day, and the next pay day she might get one at Sephora. Nope none of them expire.
Krista buys a lot of stuff at Wal-Mart during the holidays, in truth I think she does the majority of her shopping there, so she always make sure she purchases the majority of her gift cards from Wal-Mart.

She also knows that her Dad always wants a gift card for a sporting goods store, her mom a hobby store, her sister and brother in law love to eat out, that’s another gift card, her kids love iTunes, and Amazon, and her Mom loves anything from Bath and Body works.

When Krista walks into Bath and Body Works right before Christmas she can pick her Mom up some sweet deals and pay for it all on the gift cards she may have bought in June! The great thing is she stays within her budget, and the money has already been set aside for her Mom’s gift.

By the time Christmas Rolls Around in 2013 Krista will have 25 Gift Card because she doesn’t buy any in December. At $25 each that’s a grand total of $625 dollars.
WOW that’s a lot of money you don’t have to worry about at the last minute. She is so smart that she even buys two gift cards from Home Depot throughout the year because she knows they are going to buy their Christmas tree there. No cash needed she just whips out her Home Depot Gift Card! 

Okay so you know the critics are going to have something to say about this…

“Why not just put the money in the bank and draw interest on it?”  

Although I would agree with you … you could put it in the bank, but how many people are so disciplined? If you are GREAT! That is wonderful, but if you know yourself better than that you could always try the Christmas Gift Card Savings Plan. You are not going to be losing much in interest anyway!

Just remember to do your homework and only buy Gift Cards that don’t expire. Do you think this is something you could do? I think the biggest problem I would have would be remembering to buy the gift cards each payday!


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How to Cut a Measuring Cup in Half

OK so we are not going to be literally cutting a measuring cup in half, but this is a chart that tells you how to cut a recipe in half using awkward measurements. This information has come in handy so many times for me. This is brilliant because there are many times that you just don’t have the time or the patience to do the math. 

Figuring out half of 1/3 of a cup is a real pain in the you know what when you are talking about measuring cups and spoons. This tells you exactly how to do those things using teaspoons and tablespoons and just makes it’s less complicated.

This is a great post from “The Nest” I am not only linking the original article, but I am also going to copy the conversion table and paste it here because so many times such great information gets removed from sites and they are gone forever. In my opinion this conversion chart is too good to lose.

  • 1 cup (1/2 cup)
  • 3/4 cup (1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp.) 
  • 2/3 cup (1/3 cup) 
  • 1/2 cup (1/4 cup) 
  • 1/3 cup (2 Tbsp. + 2 tsp.)
  • 1/4 cup (2 Tbsp.) 
  • 3 Tbsp. (1 Tbsp. + 1 1/2 tsp.) 
  • 2 Tbsp. (1 Tbsp.) 
  • 1 Tbsp. (1 1/2 tsp.)

Visit The Nest to read more

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