Solutions & Substitutions by Reena: Storing Potatoes


By Reena Nerbas

Cleaning Mirrors

Dear Reena,

Can you give me some good advice for cleaning the mirrors in my home? Thanks, Vanessa

Dear Vanessa,

Into a spray bottle: Combine 1 tsp. dish soap, one quarter cup rubbing alcohol and 2 cups white vinegar. Spray and wipe. Another option is to clean mirrors with shaving cream. Spray on and leave for 5 minutes. Wipe off with a good quality micro fiber cloth or three day old or older newspaper.

Stinky Sports Bag

Dear Reena,

My son’s hockey bag and equipment stink! What is the best way to clean them? Help! Wayne

Dear Wayne,

Hockey equipment is often washable and unharmed by water. Smaller items may be machine washable, while large items might clean well with hand washing techniques. If this is the case, place items in the tub with detergent and water. Be careful that the dye doesn’t bleed, when water hits the textile. Remove items and air dry or freeze dry. Wash the bag (or better yet, get your son to wash the bag). Stuff the bag with crumpled up newspaper and a coffee sock. Fill a sock with dry coffee grounds, fasten the sock with an elastic band and hide the sock somewhere in the bag to absorb remaining odor.

Keeping Potatoes Longer

Dear Reena,

Any tips on how to keep my potatoes fresh for a long period of time? I am tired of throwing out potatoes. Thanks, Andy

Hi Andy,

When purchasing potatoes choose ones that are firm and free of sprouts, green skin or spots. Green potatoes may contain a substance called Solanine, which is bitter and can be toxic. If potatoes have turned green, trim off the green areas before use. To prevent potatoes from greening, store them in a dark, cool, well ventilated area. Potato sprouts are poisonous; cut off and discard the sprouts. Store an apple with potatoes to prevent sprouting. When a potato grows an ‘eye’ the potato starts to shrivel. This means the potato shrinks and the outside skin gets old…just like people. Next time you see a potato growing an “eye” and looking up at you, take a knife and cut the eye off. The potato will not shrivel as quickly. Avoid storing potatoes with onions because; when close together, they produce gases that spoil both.

No need to throw potatoes or potato peels into the garbage, they are easy to compost. In the winter collect leftover fruits and veggies into an empty ice cream bucket and leave outside to freeze. When spring arrives; dump the contents of your buckets into your compost pile.

Super Spudlicious Tips: 1) Use boiled potato water to kill weeds or to make yummy tasting gravy. 2) After you drain the water from boiled potatoes, place the saucepan over low heat back onto the stove and shake the potatoes a few times. This prevents potatoes from sticking and keeps them fluffy. 3) Instead of boiling potatoes for just one meal; boil additional potatoes with their jackets on. Once cooked store them in the fridge, next time you decide to make potato casserole, potato soup or potato salad, prep. is a cinch.

Great Tips and Tricks!

·        I was just using hair spray to remove an ink line on a pillowcase that I was sewing. I sprayed on the ink marks, let it sit a couple of minutes, then sprayed again and rubbed the ink with my fingernail. I repeated until the stain disappeared, and then I laundered as usual. Note: I put an old plastic cutting board under the material to protect the countertop. I don’t know whether this is necessary, but why take the chance?  Cheers! Jan

·        If you are tired of shoes banging around in the dryer, here is a great trick for you! Tie both shoes together with a knot at the end of the laces. Open the dryer door and place the shoes inside and hold the laces on the outside of the dryer door. Close the door so that the laces are both inside and outside of the dryer. Turn the dryer on. Submitted By: Rob

Note: Every user assumes all risks of injury or damage resulting from the implementation of any suggestions in this column. Test all products on an inconspicuous area first.

I enjoy your questions and tips, keep them coming. Need a Presenter on the topic: Effective Speaking or The Power of Words? Check out: