Reader’s best recipe
Nancy Banks of Raleigh shares her husband’s favorite recipe for asparagus.
You will need:
1 pound fresh asparagus with tough ends removed
2 tablespoons butter or margarine
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 cup toasted, slivered almonds
1/8 teaspoon salt and a dash of pepper
Melt the butter in a skillet. Add asparagus and sauté 3 or 4 minutes. Add a little water, cover the stalks and simmer for 2 minutes.
Add the remaining ingredients. Toss gently and serve.
Yield: 4 servings.
Durham gardener Frank Hyman shares a tip for keeping indoor and outdoor container plants hydrated. He says that a collection of wine corks can make an organic, permanent and attractive mulch for houseplants and outdoor planters.
“Because cork doesn’t absorb moisture, they don’t decompose like other organic mulches and will last for years,” he says. “If you don’t drink much wine, ask friends or a manager at a restaurant to save corks for you.”
Stand them up like little posts and squeeze the last ones into place until they are tight enough that they won’t float when you water the pot.
“If necessary you can check the dryness of the potting soil by poking a wooden chopstick between the corks and into the soil. You’ll be able to cut the amount of water applied and time spent by half or more.”
To learn more gardening tricks, check out the how-to videos at frankhyman.com.
Chill your kids’ lunch foods without making a mess by using a tip from the Lifehacker blog.
“Take a standard kitchen sponge, soak it in water, put it inside a Ziploc bag and freeze it. When you’re done, you have an ice pack.”
As the ice melts, the water will be contained within the sponge and bag instead of all over your kid’s lunch box.
Best for laundry
Sun Choi of Cary shares this tip for getting the most out of laundry sheets.
“If you use dryer sheets, cut them into halves or thirds. A half or a third of a sheet is enough to do the job of keeping clothes from getting static cling. I save those used pieces and then put in three of the used 1/3 sheets or two of the used 1/2 sheets for a load. It still does its job. Saves a lot of money.”
Best trick for
putting things back together
A post on Pinterest will come in handy the next time you decide to take apart an appliance, toy or gadget in order to fix it. Snap a digital photo of the item first so that you’ll know how to put it back together. (Why didn’t I think of that?)
Seeking back-to-school dinner ideas
School’s back in, after-school activities are in full swing, and many of us are struggling to get dinner on the table at a decent hour. Our readers would love a little help. If you’ve got a quick, family friendly meal idea to share, send your recipes to email@example.com. You’ll not only be helping your neighbor, you’ll be entered in a quarterly drawing for a gift card. Be sure to give precise measurements and include your name, street address and city. Put “best recipe” in the subject line.
Best of the tube
On DIY channel:
Salvage Dawgs: Hosts Mike and Robert salvage conductor chairs from a train caboose. The whole crew then picks through the Old Cold Storage warehouse in Arrington, Va., for potential treasures. Back at the shop, Mike and Tay fashion a large iron table from their wares. Watch “Salvage Dawgs” at 8:30 p.m. Sunday.
Rehab Addict: Nicole must get creative and figure out how to update and reuse stock cabinets that were in the house, turn old doors into new counter tops and repair the pine sub-floor that she’s obsessed with keeping. She must also part with a previous project after its sold to a new owner. “Rehab Addict” airs at 12:30 p.m. Wednesday.
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