How to Clean Your Stand Mixer

Stand Mixers are bound to get a little dirty and messy every time you use them, a smidge of flour there, a spot of chocolate here and you would end up with a dirty looking stand mixer every time after use.

Since stand mixers are often used every day, it is important to clean them properly for both hygienic and cleanliness reasons. If you don’t have one yet or you’re looking for an upgrade then ShiningKitchen’s best stand mixer recommendations for 2017 is probably the best resource on that.

Guess what? The process of cleaning them is even simpler than using them. Here is a little note on how to clean them up.

Ingredients and Equipment needed:

  • Baking Soda
  • Dish Soap
  • Scrub brush
  • Cotton cloth
  • Toothpick/Pipe Cleaner

Process:

Step 1: Shut down the appliance

Before you start any cleaning procedure, you need to first unplug the stand mixer and make sure that it remains shut down during the whole process.

Step 2: Clean the attachments

Now, disassemble the stand mixer parts and clean all the attachments such as beaters, whiskers, etc. separately using your hand. Use a dish soap to clean them properly and then rinse them free of all the soap and keep them aside. Make sure that you dry your attachments before using them again or storing them.

Step 3: Clean the bowl

Once you have cleaned all the attachments and accessories of the stand mixer, it is time to clean the mixer bowl. You can use a hot, soapy water to do so or use a dishwasher. If your bowl shows signs of any stains then you can also use a stainless steel cleaner to remove the water spots and other stains.

Step 4: Wipe down the spills

Make sure that you wipe your stand mixer every time after use. A lot of food particles and mixtures tend to spill down on the surface and cleaning them up immediately after it helps in keeping the mixer more clean. If you clean it regularly and wipe away all kinds of stains, spills from its surface, you won’t need to clean it as rigorously in every few weeks.

Step 5: Use baking soda for cleaning

If there is grub or dirt which is not coming out easily, then you can use a small scrub or a toothbrush and baking soda to clean that corner. A lot of leftovers and spills tend to harden over time and are tougher to clean, for these purposes baking soda comes into play.

Step 6: Clean the nooks and crevices

Make sure you clean every corner and crack of your stand mixer. Clean between the head and the arm, underneath the levers, inside the motor, beater shafts, etc. You need to unscrew your stand mixer and clean all the areas which are hidden due to the attachment hub and the mixer arms. Make sure you don’t leave a single nook or cranny uncleaned. Grim and dirt tends to get accumulated in the smallest of the corners and if not properly attended can cause your mixer to malfunction.

Step 7: Clean the underside of the appliance

Once you have cleaned all the parts and cracks of your stand mixer, you need to lay it down side-ways and clean the underneath of the stand mixer. You can use a brush or a mild cleaner to clean it free of all dust and dirt.

Step 8: Wipe the appliance dry

Once you have properly cleaned the appliance with dish soap and water, you need to use a cloth towel to properly dry it up. Make sure not a drop of water remains because it might cause electrocution when you turn on the mixer. So wipe it completely dry.

 

Now your stand mixer is all cleaned and ready to use. So plug in the appliance and get cooking again!

Mom’s Guide 2016: The 5 Best Crib Mattresses For Safe Sleep

While buying clothes and cribs for your future baby is a lot of fun, the same cannot be said for those crib mattresses you need to stock up on.

Nevertheless crib mattresses are important for your baby’s peaceful and comfortable sleep and something which you cannot compromise upon.

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So if you are feeling confused about which crib mattress you should go for, do not worry. We have compiled a list of crib mattresses from a variety of price ranges just to solve your problem.

Safety 1st Heavenly Dreams White Crib Mattress

Cost: $59

Recommended as the top pick by bestcribmattress.net, this hypoallergenic mattress with its high density thermo-bonded fiber core provides your baby with a safe and firm support allowing them to sleep peacefully through the night and ensures that you don’t have to worry about your infant’s safety. Due to its lightweight feature, it is easy to move and clean making it hygienic and versatile.

With its durability, you don’t have to worry about buying a new crib mattress anytime soon. The vinyl covering makes it waterproof and ensures that it is easy to clean ensuring that your baby doesn’t wake up at nighttime due to any kind of accidents.

As this is free from lead and phthalates and GREENGUARD certified, you can rest assured that your baby is safely sleeping and is not in contact with any harmful substance. A real gem at such a less price, this is a perfect crib mattress to ensure your baby’s safety and comfort.

Graco Premium Foam Crib and Toddler Bed Mattress

Cost: $40

One of the best crib mattress out there at such a low price, this product comes in a small lightweight packaging where it is compressed, making it easy to transport from one place to another. Once it is removed from its packaging, it expands slowly into its full-size which is 5 inches thick and full of high-quality, breathable foam. This mattress comes with a washable cover which allows you to keep your baby dry and clean at all times.

Due to its phthalates and lead-free composition and anti-static and anti-microbial materials, it provides a safe and hygienic sleeping environment for your baby. You can be rest assured that this company takes its products seriously because this crib mattress comes with a 6-year warranty. What more could you want for you baby!

Sealy Baby Firm Rest Crib Mattress EM438-VIV1

Cost: $81

Known as one of the best brand for baby’s crib mattresses, this crib mattress provides your toddlers with a more clean and comfortable sleeping surface with its hospital-grade cover and waterproof barrier. This innerspring mattress with its high coil count of 204 provides your baby with a firm and comfortable support and is known to be highly durable allowing it to turn to a toddler mattress as your baby grows.

It also comes with perimeter border wire which ensures firm edges, corners, etc. ensuring its firmness is similar to an adult mattress. Not only that, it comes with an anti-sag weight distribution system to ensure that the mattress doesn’t drop down in the middle where your baby sleeps by making sure that their weight is evenly distributed. With its multiple hypoallergenic layers, waterproof cover, and airflow pocket features, it ensure that your baby sleeps in a clean and safe environment and is in no danger of any hazard.

Sealy Soybean Foam-Core Crib Mattress

Cost: $103

Another popular crib mattress made by Sealy’s, this one ensures extra lightweight firmness for your baby and is made with the help of soyabean oils. It is free of chemical contents which makes it safe for your baby to use and hence makes it a popular choice among most parents. Its pearl embossed cover makes it waterproof and easy to clean and due to its waterproof binding, there is no worry of stains and liquids seeping inside the mattress.

Its high density core with added cotton cushioning provides a comfortable sleeping environment for the babies. One of the best feature of this mattress is that instead of using crude oil to make it hypoallergenic, this mattress uses natural and renewable oils turning it into a much more safer place for your baby to sleep in in comparison to other crib mattresses.

Simmons Kids Beautyrest Beginnings Sleepy Whispers

Cost: $139

This slightly expensive mattress with its dual feature of acting as a baby mattress on one side and as a toddler mattress on another side is truly worth its high price as it provides you with a safe sleeping environment for your baby for a long time. With its 231 pocketed coil springs and reinforced border and corner protectors, it provides your baby with a supportive and stable environment to sleep in.

Its superior woven fabric is comprised of hospital-grade waterproof barrier which makes it easy to clean it and dry it making it a suitable mattress for your baby. Its natural cotton fire protection wrap ensures that your mattress exceed all the federal flammability standards without the use of any toxic substance making it safe for your baby to breath and sleep in.

Top 10 smoking mistakes that can ruin your barbecue

Did your first ever Smoking part turned out to be a disaster? Are you embarrassed for a round 2? Well, we all start from somewhere, none of us is a born expert. So do not be disheartened, smoking is a little more complicated than grilling and it’s always better to be careful while Smoking BBQ.

Source: BestPelletSmoker.com (6 Common Mistakes People Make While Barbecue)

 

barbecue

We have jot down a few things which you should certainly avoid when Smoking BBQ so that your BBQ party doesn’t turn out to be a disaster, scaring your guests away.

1)    Choosing the Wrong meat

Don’t get over excited on your first smoking session and attempt to cook something as complicated as Ribs. Some of the most experienced smokers take a lot of time to perfect the art of BBQ Ribs.

Start with something easy and difficult to ruin such as a whole chicken or pork roast. These are cheap and hence make up for the best practice sessions. Once you have got a hang of this, you can move on to bigger meats.

2)    Not prepping your meat

One of the most careless mistake which people often tend to make is putting the cold meat on the smoker without thawing it first. If you are a beginner, avoid putting cold meat on as it may result in condensation of creosote on the surface of the meat if you don’t have a clean burning fire.

If you try putting cold meat on the smoker without prior experience, you might end up getting a soot coating over your meat which I can guarantee you no one will even touch. So, go slow and warm your meat to room temperature before you start smoking it.

3)    Using Wrong Wood for Smoke

Another frequent mistake which is made while smoking is using the Green wood. This is a big no-no, please do not use Green wood as unseasoned (green) wood doesn’t burn cleanly and ends up giving a bad flavour to your food. I’d suggest pellet smokers over anything else, you can find some good one’s here.

Use seasoned (aged) wood such as apple, oak, hickory, etc. while smoking your meat. Also, make sure to gather more information on which wood is better for smoking with which food item. Wood is the most crucial instrument in smoking and you don’t want to get that wrong, right?

4)    Opening the Lid too often

Stop peeking inside after every two minutes, your food is not going to disappear anywhere (unless magic is at work here). If you keep opening your lid every so often, you will end up letting the heat escape and the temperature will go down in the smoker.

You don’t need to remove the lip so often, you can know everything you need to by paying attention to the thermometer which you have affixed in the smoker. Open the lid only when you need to mop and move the meat, too much peaking can ruin your meat. Nonetheless, a little peaking is fine as long as you know the differentiation between little and too often.

5)    Not controlling the temperature

You can’t just put the meat on smoker, sit down and then expect the meat to get magically cooked. If that’s how it worked, we all would laze around our homes all day long. A good BBQ is most dependent on what kind of temperature it is exposed to, too much heat and you run the risk of drying the meat. Too less heat and you run the risk of undercooking the meat.

You might not get this right in the first go, but try to keep the temperature between 225-250 degree F. Adjust the vents periodically and add more fuel when needed. Make sure you don’t avoid maintaining a constant temperature for the BBQ.

6)    Over adjusting your Smoking tools

We have mentioned previously to control the temperature but that doesn’t mean you should keep on disturbing the tools every minute. Avoid adjusting too many things at once. If the temperature is too high, don’t pull off the lid and make wild adjustments to the setup.

Change some setup and see its result, if it doesn’t work for you change it again. Experiment and see what changes help but like I said don’t over-do it. It might just turn your meat into a disaster rather than helping it.

7)    Trusting the Hood Thermometer

Take a note to never believe your hood thermometer. Most smokers have a built-in thermometers which takes temperature of the air around the meat. Do not believe them, they don’t know what they are talking about.

Get an instant read thermometer which can be affixed with the meat inside the thermometer, this will give you a better idea of what the temperature is currently.

8)    Too much smoke

Yes, there is a thing called too much smoke. You might think that smoking adds amazing flavour to meat, so why not use a lot of smoke? But no, this logic is all flawed. If your meat tastes more of smoke than of meat, there is something seriously wrong with it.

Make sure you don’t smoke your meat too much. Avoid putting too many chunks of wood or keeping the vent closed for too long. Remember, less is always more.

9)    Glazing too early

So, now that you have set your meat perfectly on the smoker, you feel it’s time to put a little glaze on. After all if you put it early, it will absorb it more and give it an even more shinier look, right? Do not try this if you have no intention of eating a black burned meat in your tonight’s party.

Don’t glaze your meat until the last 15-30 minutes of smoking. Glaze contains sugar which turns to burn quickly and turning into black colour. So if you have no interest in black meat, don’t glaze early.

10)Not giving it time

Don’t hurry the cooking because you are impatient or hungry. Smoking takes time and so it should be respected and not hurried if you don’t want to eat uncooked or badly cooked meat.

Once it’s done, you will know as it won’t stick too much. But make sure that once it’s completely cooked, you let it cool for some time otherwise you might end up destroying it in your attempt to serve it.

 

 

5 Tips on Caring for Ceramic Knives

If you love to organize your kitchen in a modern way, then for sure you have ceramic knives in your kitchen. Am I right?

These are mostly fancy looking plastic utensils but the blades are quite sharp. However, you can now keep the edges sharp for a long time even. Well! Now don’t be much happy as there is a bad news too.

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Yes! The bad news is that you can’t just avoid taking special care for them as they likely to breaks or stains if not handle with extra care. So here are basically some of the useful tips which will help you for taking the special care of these fierce yet fragile blades of the ceramic knives.

5 Tips on Caring for Ceramic Knives

Don’t drop them!

While using these fancy knives, don’t play with it or try to become a knife ninja.

Haven’t understood what I said? Well! You need to have a high reflex while using the ceramic knives. However, if you drop or bump the blades, there is a high chance of breaking.

Be choosy about what you cut — and where you cut it

As these knives are fancy looking, hence they are sharper than steel yet thinner and they are not as sturdy. So you need to basically avoid using them for cutting anything and everything.

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Choose wisely what to cut and how to so as to avoid causing any damage. If you try to cut bones, seeds or anything hard like that with these knives, you are likely to break the parts of it.

Diamonds are a ceramic knife’s best friend

Want to sharpen the ceramic knives but don’t know how to do that? Well! You might have heard that “Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend”? But in this case “Diamonds are a ceramic knife’s best friend.”

sharpening-ceramic-knives-wrong-way

Yes! If you want to sharpen those ceramic knives, then use diamonds to sharpen them. It is harder than the blades and thus it becomes easy to sharpen it. It will help you in keeping your knife’s blade blunt free.

Don’t put them in the dishwasher

You must be thinking then where to keep the knives-right? Well! Basically the ceramic knives are dishwasher safe but it is for a sure a bad idea to keep them there.

Why? As anything that goes into the dishwasher basically bumps around a bit and therefore, within the high pressure of the washer, the blades may break or chip.

Rather get a good faucet (read reviews here) and use that to clean the knives.

Store with care

Last and final step to keep the ceramic knives safe is to store it properly with care. They aren’t magnetized and thus you cannot just store in the magnetic strips.

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Secondly, as they are quite sharp and brittle you cannot even keep them in an open area that too uncovered. Thus you need to find out something to cover them and keep them safely.

So these are basically few tips to keep your fancy and good looking ceramic knives clean and safe.