Unusual Ways to Use Your Microwave

Microwave ovens are not the best appliance for actually cooking most types of food consider central to a meal. Oh sure, microwave ovens are great for heating up cold food and for cooking things like popcorn, but you want to stay away from those microwaves when trying to cook a pork chop or steak. On the other, you should probably start looking to the microwave for a number of other uses that you may never have considered before. In fact, the microwave oven is far handier for some tasks that have nothing to do with eating than it is for other tasks that are all about making delicious meals.

Making Soggy Snack Crispy Again

Snacks that have a tendency to get soggy and limp when put away for eating too long can be brought back to the crispier side of life thanks to your microwave. Greasy potato chips and crackers left exposed to too much moisture can both be made at least slightly crunchier again if placed in the microwave on its highest setting for about a minute. Likewise, if your microwave bacon does not come out quite as crisp as you’d like, you are probably making the common mistake of taking it out right after the ding. Bacon, chips, crackers and other snack items prone to unpleasant quantities of moistness can all be made crispier by allowing them to sit inside the microwave for a couple of minutes after the timer goes off.

Keeping Warm

If you are having trouble keeping warm on cold winter nights, you should learn how to use your microwave to address the problem. A quick zap of socks will provide you with hot booties to keep your feet from getting ice cold. Heating up a skullcap in the microwave can have the same effect on your head. Gloves and even shirts and pants can all be warmed in the microwave as long as you don’t let them warm up for too long and keep an eye on them to make sure they don’t catch on fire. Just remember that clothing with metal on it like zippers and snaps should not warmed up in the microwave. Also test the clothing first to make sure it has not been allowed to get so hot that it will burn your skin.

Compress

The same principle as above applies to creating a warm compress. A damp washcloth allowed to heat inside the microwave until it is warm to your touch can be used as a compress placed on the forehead.

Raising Raisins

Raisins that have become dehydrated to the point of shrinking in size and overpruning can be brought back to thick, juicy life by placing them in a cup with shallow water. Stretch some plastic wrap over the cup and heat on the high setting for between 30 and 60 seconds or until they have visibly regained their plumpness.

Cleaning Cutting Boards

You should make sure to always clean your plastic cutting boards before use, but even the hardiest scrubbing won’t have the same impact as the heat generated by a microwave. Any hard plastic cutting board that can be fit inside a microwave should be inserted in there for at least thirty seconds once or twice a week to further ensure the killing of bacteria that calls this surface home.

Grilling

No, you can’t use your microwave to get that distinctive taste and texture that comes from grilling food. What you can do is lessen the possibility that your meat has not actually been thoroughly cooked on a grill. Avoid the potential for salmonella and E. Coli poisoning by first microwaving your cuts of meat–especially chicken–before dropping them on your grill. Microwaving meats beforehand will increase the odds that the very center of your meat get fully cooked and lowers the odds that you will have to practically burn the outside of the meat in order to make sure the center reaches proper temperatures.