Tuesday, April 2, 2024

The Many Uses of ........... Part 2

 Happy April to all.   April showers............bring May flowers!  Goodness, are we starting out with a bang!  Rain and more rain overnight and today - oh my.  Lots of thunder boomers and fireworks in the sky.  Flooded back 40 in the yard!  After today, the temps get pretty chilly for a few days again.  They have mentioned snow!!  Say it aint so.   Such is life in Spring!  I hope you are all well and safe.

More of the many uses of different items today.  It is just nice to know of many ways to use what you may have, or ways to get the most bang for your buck.
Maybe some new ideas for some and same old for others.

I think tomatoes has to be the most versatile item we can have in our pantries.  So many uses.
Soups, stews and casseroles - always good as a base
Salsa, spaghetti sauce, pizza sauce, chili sauce, tomato bits, sauce, juice - so many things to make from your garden
Salsa chicken or chops - yum
Make a Spanish style rice with salsa
Cold soups in summer
Top pizza with thin slices
Roast tomatoes
Salads, diced or sliced
Salsa eggs
Add bits to mac n cheese (yum) or to Cole slaw (super yum)
Anything Italian or Mexican
Sauces and pastes can be made into juice with addition of water
Dips - salsa and cheese is yummy

I love tomatoes so much - in just about any way.  Of course, my favorites come summer are BLT's and tomato sandwiches!!!!  My mouth is watering!

First a disclaimer:  I know baking soda is salty!  The ideas listed may not be for everyone.  They are great uses to save a cooking blunder or to add a bit of fluff or color to food.  As always check with your physician before using a lot of it.  If blood pressure is a problem for you, check with your doctor.
* 1 tsp. to a pot of cooking rice, makes the rice a bit fluffier
* 1/2 tsp. to every 3 eggs, helps makes omelets fluffy
* Rub some to the fat on pork chops before frying - to get crispy fried fat
* Soak fresh fish in 2 Tbsp. of soda and a quart of water for a while - rinse and cook.  Takes away that "fishy" smell and flavor
* Test the acidity of tomatoes!  Dip a damp spoon in baking soda and the stir some tomatoes.  If it bubbles they are very high in acid.
* If you have a boil water alert in your area - that does change the taste of water some.  1 Tbsp. of baking soda to a gallon of water - softens the taste
* Helps cut the acid in tomato sauce or chili - just add a pinch
* A pinch in a cup of coffee takes away bitterness
* 1/4 tsp. to 8 oz. of OJ or grapefruit juice reduces the acidic levels
* I use a bit with vinegar and water to clean store-bought fruit and veggies - that waxy film!
* If you cook cauliflower in water - add a tsp. to the water - it keeps the cauliflower white and reduces odors
* Helps to eliminate gas formed by baked beans - add a dash while cooking
* Softens the taste of wild game.  Soak in a little baking soda and water overnight.  Rinse and cook
* I always add a pinch to waffles, pancakes and biscuits to make them fluffy
* If using tart berries - add a 1/2 tsp. to the berries and stir in.  You will use less sugar in your pie or cobbler!
* Tenderizes tough cuts of meat.  Rub a bit on the meat - let it stand a few hours - rinse and cook

It tenderizes, it sweetens, it fluffs, it takes out acidity - just so many uses.

It is also very, very useful in cleaning.  Like I stated above I use in a fruit wash.  I also use as a natural cleaning scrub.  I use in laundry from time to time with a little peroxide to whiten clothes.
I use the ineffective stuff in the frig for a deodorizer.  I can sprinkle on rugs and let it sit for a while - then vacuum - it removes odors.
I also use with peroxide from time to time as a natural toothpaste that whitens (my dentist suggested this).
I have also many times used it to settle an upset tummy!  1/2 tsp. to 4 oz. of water and drink - helps neutralize acid in the belly.  Been doing this since I was a child - mom taught me this one.

The list goes on and on.  So many uses!!!!!
**Again, if you have blood pressure problems - check with your doctor before using a lot - just as you do with salt use.

So there you have some ways to stretch those pantry items a bit and maybe save a little along the way.
So many items have many uses - we just get stuck in a rut and don't experiment.
Have fun all.

Have a great day and be safe - those storms have been traveling across the country!


  1. Tomatoes are my favorite!! I can't wait for Summer to come to have a BLT. I haven't had one since my last tomato probably in October. I can't wait to try the beef bacon on it. I also brush my teeth once or twice a week with baking soda and it really does do a wonderful job cleaning your teeth. I've been up since 3:30am when all of the alarms started going off waring of a tornado. As far as I know, no damage here but again it was close. Wishing you a wonderful day!!

    1. Me too - love tomatoes in all forms!
      I use once or twice a week as well - it truly does make teeth and mouth feel fresh and clean.
      Glad you had no damage. Just lots of rain in my area. I think the yuck stuff stayed south of me.
      Thank you - you too!

  2. Thanks for all the suggestions for baking soda. I'll write some of those down. I add a little to my waffle batter plus a teaspoon of vinegar and I get fluffy & crisp waffles. So good.

    I grow a lot of cherry tomatoes in my garden so I end up with bags and bags of frozen ones. I love dumping a bag in a pot with whatever other vegetables I have and cooking it into a nice little side dish or I put it over rice or noodles or potatoes!

    1. There are just so many uses. Hmmm, haven't heard of adding the vinegar for crispy. I will try that too! Thanks.
      Tomatoes are just so yummy and healthful in any size!

  3. I hope the snow stays away! I'm ready for beautiful, sunny spring days! I also love tomatoes! So many great uses for them.

    1. I hope so too. They say flurries - but still! Over it - ready for warm days every day!!!
      Tomatoes are good for you too!

  4. We certainly did some thunder-boomers! We don't have the rain gauge set up yet, waiting for consistently warm weather, so I don't know for sure how much we got but like you, have some flooding in the yard. Yeah, ix-nay on the show!

    Great ideas for using baking soda. Both for cleaning and cooking, and for oral hygiene. The Farmer (and Riley) love their tomatoes. Lots of uses for tomatoes and you just listed the most important ones. I noticed that Miss Lori mentioned beef bacon. The Farmer has either turkey bacon or beef bacon with his breakfast.

    Enjoy your day! Think I'll go out and see if I can dig out weeds at the edge the the flower bed. May be too muddy.

    1. Yes, it was noisy for sure last night and this morning. Sun shining right at the moment - don't be fooled, more rain coming.
      Where do you get beef bacon? I had not heard of it until she mentioned it on her blog.
      Those wees should just pull out today! The robins are having a feast on worms!

    2. Donna, you're the only other person that has heard of/tried beef bacon that I've know of. I just recently found beef bacon and we will probably never eat pork bacon again.

    3. Debby in Kansas USAApril 3, 2024 at 8:11 AM

      Is it with the pork and turkey bacon? I've never heard of it.

  5. Is it summer yet??? March seemed so long and now we have at least a month and a half before we can plant tomatoes. We are having false spring the last couple of days. Tomorrow it's going to be cold again.
    Thank you for all the tips. I printed them out.

    1. Really!! It was 70 yesterday already mid 60's today and they say snow tomorrow! Nuts. I am ready too.
      Yes, a good month and half here as well - before the real garden gets planted. I am so ready.
      Glad you liked them!!!

  6. We're getting closer to spring here too, as the snow has pretty much melted away. I won't be surprised to see more in April but it will disappear quickly. I'd love a rain, as it would clean up the dirt and debris that gathers over the winter.
    I really like baking soda for cleaning. It's much easier on stainless steel sinks than other cleaners. I had no idea it could be used to ease tummy troubles. That one I must remember.

    1. Yes, it is closer and closer - we are just eager! I am sure there will be more snow and yes, it will melt quickly - just done with it.
      I use it on my stainless sinks too! Oh, I have taken bi-carb water for upset tummy since I was a kid. Only thing my parents ever gave us for tummy troubles.

  7. Definitely use soda for teeth cleaning and know that it's instant relief for acid stomach but I never have that issue.
    Tomatoes and toast! My favourite. My overwintered tomato plants are flowering and setting fruit. Happy to see that.
    Hope you all avoid damage from the tornadoes heading up the midwest. We are expecting turbulence too. Wind, rain, snow?
    Stay safe.

    1. Yep have used it on my teeth for years and for an upset belly more times than I can count.
      You lucky duck - you will have fresh tomatoes before any of us! YAY. I tried that one year - and had a terrible time with aphids. Nothing I did took care of it.
      It got pretty after the storms this morning and sunny. Just had a quick one come through to be followed by many more and then the colder weather! Sigh!
      I sure hope all are safe.

  8. Lots of uses for both tomatoes and bi-carb, both are kitchen staples in my home. I have found some volunteer tomatoes that have popped up and am debating if I should move them before the predicted heavy rain we will be getting. They are only tiny so unlikely to survive.
    Have a great week, Louise

    1. Maybe a garden pot over each with a rock on top to hold in place. They'll thank you for it!

    2. Both are staples here as well. So many uses.
      Neat about the volunteers! I always try to keep some of those - they are tomatoes regardless of type. I like Rita's idea of covering them with a pot or something solid. Good idea.

    3. Thank you Rita, great idea. I’ve plonked a big heavy plastic tub over them and put two bricks on the top. We’ll see if they survive.
      I’m pretty sure they are only Tiny Tom’s, and I don’t really want them in that particular spot, but it’s a shame to see them drown.
      Thanks again.

  9. Yes, weather is strange. ;) Today, sunny and 75. Tomorrow night and Thursday, snow. But it won't be bitter cold so my azaleas should make it through ok. :)

    Volunteer veggies are cool. I'd be grateful. My spinach seed is coming up!

    1. It appears you fared well through the storms too. That is good. Yep it is whacky stuff!
      Volunteers are pretty darn cool. My poor brother tries and tries to get spinach to grow and has no luck. Everything else grows like crazy - just not spinach. Weird.

  10. Hmm, love those ideas for baking soda. Going to try a few of those.

    God bless.

  11. Debby in Kansas USAApril 3, 2024 at 8:09 AM

    You covered a lot!

    I love tomatoes. A tomato omelet is my favorite, especially with a sprinkle of pepper jack cheese. My favorite summer salad is cherry tomatoes and sliced cucumber with balsamic vinegar. YUM!!

    1. YUM - on both counts. I will eat a tomato most any way I can!

  12. Blizzard here! Thanks for the great ideas for tomatoes!

    1. YUCKO!!!! Stay in and stay safe.
      Think thoughts of spring.