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Creative microwave oven hacks that help stretch your dollar

Did you spend quite a bit on that sleek microwave oven for your brand new kitchen? There are more uses to it than reheating food. Here are some microwave oven hacks every homeowner should know.

FOOD

■ Instead of soaking beans and lentils overnight, simply submerge them in a bowl of water, along with a pinch of bicarbonate soda and microwave at high temperature for 10 minutes. Let stand for another 40 minutes.

■ To get the skins off tomatoes and peaches easily, place them in a microwave and heat at medium temperature for 30 seconds.

■ To soften brown sugar, place a damp paper towel in the container, and close tightly. Microwave it at medium temperature for 30 seconds.

■ Get more juice out of your citrus fruits by first heating them at medium temperature for 20 seconds in a microwave.

■ Chop your onions without crying by trimming off the ends, and microwaving them at medium temperature for 30 seconds. Remove them from the oven and chop immediately.

NON-FOOD

■ To remove a stamp from an envelope, simply place two drops of water on the stamp before microwaving it at medium temperature for 20 seconds.

■ Disinfect your cutting board in a microwave oven by rubbing a cut lemon all over the cutting surface, and then microwaving it on medium heat for 60 seconds.

■ Did you know that you can disinfect your potting soil in a microwave? Place 400g of potting soil onto a flat dish and microwave it for 1 minute and 30 seconds.

TOPICS: hacks, microwave
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