Burt Ren

Tips for Removing Stubborn Grease Build-Up From Your Kitchen Stove

You use your stove every day and do you best to wipe it clean when all is said and done. Even with the best of your efforts, you’re bound to see grease building up on the surface on the surface. That doesn’t mean it is time to buy a new stove. With a few tips that are tried and true, you can make your stove look like new all over again. Say goodbye to that pesky grease by giving these helpful hints a try.

Try Baking Soda

If you would prefer to go with a natural method, you can use baking soda. You’ll need about a half cup. Place the baking soda into a bowl and add water a teaspoon at a time until you have created a paste from the mixture. Dip your cleaning cloth or rag into the mixture and apply to the stove wherever it is needed. Continue until you don’t see anymore grease or stains on your stove. You’ll need to take a fresh, damp cloth to wipe away the mixture. Dry the stove with another cloth and it will look like new. You can also try another alternative with baking soda. Grab the box and sprinkle it over the surface of your stove and beneath your burners. Add hydrogen peroxide. It will make the baking soda fizz up and cleaning off the surface of your stove will be easy.

Don’t Forget Dish Soap

Dish soap, or dish detergent, can also be effective when you want to eliminate grease on your stove. Set aside a bowl with hot water. Dip your rag or dishcloth in the water. Apply a coating of hot water on your stove to tackle that stubborn grease. Add dish soap to your water and continue to scrub. If you still have resistant grease, try squirting a few dabs of dish soap on the stove. Keep scrubbing, using your “elbow grease” until that pesky grease is wiped away on your stove. Dip your cloth in hot water to wipe the surface clean, getting rid of any remaining soap and debris. Dry and your stove will be in tiptop shape again.

Make a White Vinegar Spray

You can blend your own white vinegar spray. You’ll put twice as much water as vinegar in a spray bottle, apply it to the surface of your stove, and wipe away the grease.

Add a Dash of Lemon with Baking Soda

Grab your trusty box of baking soda again. Sprinkle it on top of your stove. Slice a lemon. Take one slice and rub it all over the top of your stove. The two will work together as a classic combination that will naturally cleanse your stove. It will smell delightful as well.

Break Out the Vegetable Oil

You might think that adding any type of oil to the mix would just make it worse. However, a little bit of vegetable oil will loosen up the stains on the surface of your stove. You’ll want to get your regular kitchen cleaner next. Spray the surface to wipe away the oil and remaining grime on your stove.

Give Oven Cleaner a Shot

Oven cleaner that you typically spray in the oven is highly effective as well. You’ll take the removable parts off of the stove first and set them aside. Lay them on paper towel or newspaper. Spray down the surface of your stove with your oven cleaner. Make sure that there is plenty of ventilation while you do so. Crack a window or run a fan. You’ll want to let it go to work for a few hours before you grab a cloth or rag and dip it in hot water. Wipe everything clean and your stove will gleam.

Use Rubbing Alcohol Mixed with Salt

You’ll need four times as much rubbing alcohol as salt mixed in a bowl. Grab a rag or cloth, dip it in the mixture, and apply it to the surface of your stove top. You’ll see the grease stains gradually lifting away, revealing the clean surface of your stove once again. Wipe it clean with a cloth dipped in hot water when you are done.

Top Things Every First Time Dog Owner Should Know

Congratulations! Having a new dog in your life is exciting, but if you’re a first time dog owner, there are important things you need to know. While there is much more to learn about caring for a dog than you’ll read here today, these six expert tips will help you get off to a great start.

Dog-proofing your home is a must

New pets are curious and want to check out everything — including things that could be dangerous. Get on your hands and knees and look at things from your dog’s level. What do you see? Good precautions include securing cabinet doors where toxic chemicals are stored, making sure electrical cords are out of reach and moving potentially toxic houseplants to higher ground.

Don’t anthropomorphize. Dogs are not people, too!

Canine behaviorists warn that dogs don’t experience many uniquely human emotions. Feelings like guilt, anger and spite are not part of how dogs operate. It’s a common mistake to anthropomorphize dogs — treat them as if they have the same characteristics as humans — but it leads to fundamental communication errors.

It’s tempting to try to frame your puppy’s antics in a way you understand, but thinking your dog ate your best shoes because he was mad at you for being gone too long leads to training mistakes that too often result in short, unhappy relationships.

Boot camp should start on day one

It’s never too early to teach your puppy good manners. Define your expectations for your dog’s behavior and don’t fall into the trap of allowing naughty habits because it’s cute or because you think she doesn’t know any better — of course she doesn’t!

Dogs aren’t born inherently knowing what acceptable behavior is in a human household. Good manners must be taught and consistently reinforced. Helping your dog be a model citizen is the key to many happy years together.

Socialized dogs are the best companions

Many troublesome canine behaviors develop because of lack of socialization. Pets of any age can benefit from training to make them more situation-friendly, but making your dog comfortable with a wide range of people, places and activities is best approached before he’s four months old.

If you want a dog that is relaxed and well-behaved in any setting, start socialization early. Take him for road trips and visits to the pet store. Let him romp in the dog park and meet new friends. Ultimately, your dog’s familiarity with most situations will determine his comfort level and his behavior.

Nutrition counts

There is no specific formula for how often you should feed your dog, but what you put in his bowl should meet all of his nutritional needs. Check the label for a statement from the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) that certifies the food is “complete and balanced” for your dog’s life stage. Foods for puppies, adult and senior dogs are formulated differently and the subtle differences can make a significant health impact.

When considering which dog food to by, price isn’t always a guarantee of optimal nutrition, but brands with superior ingredients get better results. Your dog will have a healthy coat that sheds less and there will be less to pick up in the pooper scooper!

Create a rainy day fund for pet care expenses

Some pet care expenses are predictable and there should be room in the budget for food and basic veterinary care, but surprise costs can threaten to derail your financial plans or worse, put you in a position in which you can’t give your dog the care he needs.

Things like boarding fees if you have to go out of town or medical care for a significant injury can add up quickly. Pet insurance is an option for veterinary bills, but starting a rainy day fund the day you bring your new dog home will cover the unexpected.

Building a relationship with your new dog takes time and patience, but with a little know-how, you’ll be on the right track. Relax, have fun, and don’t worry — you’ll learn the rest along the way.

How To Make Delectable Deviled Eggs

Deviled eggs are an all American classic. Not only are they portable and easy to eat. They also come in endless combinations. It’s possible to incorporate deviled eggs into nearly any menu from a formal dinner to a casual potluck. When creating deviled eggs, it’s best to start with the basics. Once you’ve mastered this simple recipe, you can get fancy and find a variation you really like. Deviled eggs are also a highly useful kitchen entertainment staple. Keep them on hand in the event of unexpected guests. They can go in the fridge and stay chilled for several days until you’re ready to eat them.

Prepare the Hard Boiled Eggs

Before you do anything else, you’ll need to prepare half a dozen hard boiled eggs and a enough ice to cover the eggs so you can peel them. Boiling eggs properly can be tricky. To make the hard boiled eggs, you should have a large pot on hand and half a dozen eggs. Place the eggs in the pot and cover with cold water that is about a quarter inch above the top of the eggs. Bring the water to a boil and cover the pot. Remove the eggs from the heat and let them sit in the boiled water for about eight to ten minutes. This will make sure they are completely cooked. Drain the water and immediately plunge them into ice water. Let them stay in the ice water for about five minutes. This will stop them from getting a greenish tinge. You can keep the hard boiled eggs in the fridge for several days until you’re ready to make deviled eggs.

The Standard Ingredients

Before making the deviled eggs, gather your ingredients. You should have half a cup of cottage cheese and a quarter cup of sour cream on hand. You’ll also need a teaspoon of white vinegar, a teaspoon of your favorite mustard (we like the French kind), a tablespoon of mayonnaise (homemade is best if you have the time) and salt and paper to taste. Some kick is also good. We really like paprika as it adds color as well. Sliced jalapenos are also perfect if you want something with a bit of flair. Lay the eggs on a cutting board. One at a time, slice each egg lengthwise. Make sure your knife is sharp so it cuts easily. Otherwise, your eggs will break and it will be hard to fill them. Remove the yolks and set aside the whites. Take the yolks and mix with the rest of the ingredients. Pulse the food processor several times or mix them in a bowl by hand. You’re aiming for a smooth paste that isn’t runny. Once you have the texture you want, spoon the mixture into each each white. Top with the jalapenos or the paprika.

Low Calorie Variations

One of the many fabulous things about deviled eggs is just how easy it is to play around with the basic recipe. You can lighten the recipe and reduce the calories. Instead of heavy mayo, reduced fat Greek yogurt works just as well without sacrificing flavor. Get rid of the sour cream and use low fat cream cheese. It’s still creamy but it’s less fatty. You can also substitute lots of other kinds of emulsifiers to serve as binding. Hummus, red pepper dip, tapanade made of olives and baba ganoush from mashed eggplant add zing without piling on the calories and fat.

Wonderful Possibilities

Hard boiled eggs are highly adaptable. The eggs serve as the perfect foil for upscale ingredients and items from other cultures. Impress your guests with deviled eggs topped with caviar and smoked salmon. Crab dip, made by adding fresh crab to your basic deviled egg recipe is another popular item, especially during the summer when people want fresh seafood. Salmon, shrimp or clams can also be used to bring something unexpected to the menu. Few foods are yummier than bacon. Crumble a few slices and top each egg carefully. Fresh spices also make eggs more delicious. Sprinkle some chopped parsley and oregano on top from your garden. Chervil and tarragon add a French touch.