Uncommon ways to cook common faves

Frank Lillig

Everyone has a favorite food or that one dish that reminds them of home. Then there are some who take that dish and try different ways to make it better. Here are a few kitchen hacks to help.

  • For an interesting twist on two old favorites, try a scrambled-hard-boiled egg. Wrap an egg in a towel (a long-sleeved shirt sleeve works well, too). Grab the ends of the towel or sleeve and spin it viciously for about a minute. What you are trying to do is scramble the egg inside its shell. Once you are finished with that, hard-boil the egg as you would normally.
  • Cook eggs in a mug in the microwave. For scrambled eggs, crack them into the mug, whisk them up, add salt and pepper and microwave for 45 seconds. Then flip them and microwave again for 45 seconds. For an omelet add your fixings and repeat the same process as with the scrambled egg.
  • People often cook eggs in a piece of bread, a dish which goes by many names such as egg in a basket. However, you can take it to the next level and cook your eggs in a burger. Simply use a glass to cut a hole in the center of your flattened patty and place it in a hot pan. Then crack your egg into the hole and continue cooking as though your burger hasn’t just transcended awesomeness.
  • Freeze berries or sliced fruit and use them as ice cubes for a tasty way to enhance any drink.
  • Use fruits for flavored water. Fill a pitcher about three quarters with water, then fill it with different fruits. Some good combinations: lemons and limes, strawberries and kiwis, or strawberries and bananas. Try different combos to find your favorite.
  • Most soups require the use of broth or stock as a base. You can buy these or make your own and then freeze in ice cube trays for later use. Simply add one or two cubes to your water and–boom–you have a perfect base for your soup.
  • Sometimes it can be difficult to pour pancake batter out of a bowl or ladle it without making a mess. To make this easier, one can use a thoroughly cleaned ketchup or syrup bottle as a pancake batter dispenser. Fill it up and squeeze out as much batter as desired.
  • Cookie cutters can be used as forms to make fun pancake shapes.
  • A simple way to make mozzarella sticks or any kind of cheese stick is to flatten a few pieces of bread, add your cheese, roll and cook in a hot pan with some olive oil. Some people cut off the crusts but that is completely up to the chef.
  • Cherry tomatoes are tasty little additions to many recipes, but they can be tedious if you have to cut lots of them. Instead, you can sandwich them between two container lids and slice them that way.
  • Use a sharp knife to cut corn off the cob quickly. Stand the corn on end and cut down. You should probably do this in a bowl because it tends to get a little messy.
  • One can shuck corn easily by cutting the end and sliding the shuck off of the corn.