I hope to be a regular contributor to this blog, and not leave it all up to Karen! I thought that I'd start by throwing out a couple of tips that I use regularly in my kitchen. I thought these were common knowledge, but after discussing them with some friends I realized that not everyone knows about these.
Tip #1: Refrigerate your onions. They will cause a lot less tears if they are nice and cold when you cut them.
Tip #2: Frozen fruits and vegetables are your friends, but not in the way you might think. Besides frozen bags of peas making great sources of coolness for a sprained ankle, they can save you in a pinch.
Many times I put dinner in the crockpot when I won't be home to cook it. And many times it is still too hot to eat, especially if it's a dish that retains a lot of heat like a thick soup or chili. When you don't have time for things to cool before rushing out to Cub Scouts, what do you do? Grab a bag of frozen corn, stir some into each dish of waiting chili, and voila! You now have dinner at a gobbleable (yes, I made that word up) temperature.
You can do this with frozen peas, or blueberries, or any fruit or veggie you don't mind eating thawed and slightly warmed. I don't recommend using blueberries in chili, but they are great for cooling oatmeal or mush down in a flash.
Burn-free mouths make everyone happy!