Renovation & Design

Got buttermilk? It's the secret to making delicious corn bread

Question: I made cornbread and it was very crumbly. What did I do wrong? I used one egg; should I use two next time? Carolyn

Answer: Here are a few hints for making delicious cornbread: the first is to use buttermilk instead of milk or water. While you do not want to add excess moisture, the following are a few options to try: Add half a cup of sour cream to your recipe. The extra egg is a good idea, and some people like to add a can of cream corn to the recipe to add moisture.

Question: I am packing a picnic and would like to keep the food hot as long as possible. What is the best way to package the food? Jeff

Answer: Using an insulated bag or cooler is the first step in keeping food hot. Wrap the containers tightly in foil, newspapers and towels. Include one or several hot water bottles. Pack food into an insulated container, if possible. If you need to transfer the food to a container, other than the pot or pan you cooked the food in, heat the casserole dish in the oven first. Some people use thermal bags, or buckwheat bags, heated in the microwave, to insulate the cooler.

Question: What is the easiest way to remove ticks from skin? Karina

Answer: To remove ticks, apply a glob of liquid hand soap to a cotton ball. Cover the tick for 20 seconds; apparently the tick sticks to the cotton ball. If, however, you do have to remove the tick, turn it counterclockwise.

Tick Trivia: Tick season is here, and those hardy critters can live as long as 200 days without consuming food or water. Tuck those pants into your socks and stay covered as much as possible. Some stores carry tick-repellent clothing, I haven’t put them to the test, but it’s tempting.

Question: My children love to eat chicken wings. I make them by battering them with flour and spices, but when I deep-fry the wings, the coating falls off, making a big mess of skinless chicken wings. What am I doing wrong? Thanks, Jennifer

Answer: After rolling chicken wings in batter, cover the bowl of wings with plastic wrap and place the bowl in the fridge for about 90 minutes. As the flour adheres to the meat, the wings become sticky and the batter holds to the meat during frying. Also, make sure the oil is very hot before dropping meat into the pot. To test proper deep-frying temperature, drop a bite-sized piece of bread into the oil. If the oil bubbles around the bread and turns light brown within 60 seconds, the oil is ready to use. Or put the handle end of a wooden spoon into the oil, when bubbles form along the handle a little, the oil is ready. Or drop a popcorn kernel into the oil, the kernel pops when oil reaches approximately 350 F, which is perfect for deep frying.

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.

Have a great suggestion or tip? Please send an email at: Reena Nerbas is a popular motivational presenter for large and small groups; check out her website:


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