DEAR HELOISE: Is there a difference between liquid and dry measuring cups? I know there are cups made for wet ingredients and ones for dry ingredients, but does it really matter which one I use?
- Linda W. in Indiana
DEAR READER: A cup is a cup by liquid or dry “volume.” A liquid measuring cup typically is glass or plasticso you can see through it, and the measurements are written on the side. It has a spout with a handle on the side for pouring. A 1- or2-cup probably is the most used cup in American homes. I have three: two 2-cup ones and one 1-cup one, and two sets of dry measuring cups.
Dry measuring cups may be made of plastic or metal and have a flat top. These usually come in sets up to 1 cup. They are designed for you to fill with dry ingredients and then use a knife or spatula to level it off.
It may matter which one you use, particularly when baking. Most recipes use measurements that are precise, and it is difficult to measure dry ingredients accurately in a liquid 1- or 2-cup measuring cup.
DEAR HELOISE: I am a butter lover. Knowing when to take the butter out of the refrigerator so it will be spreadable is something I have never been able to master. Softening it in the microwave doesn’t work for me, either. I use my cheese slicer for butter. This slicer is the planer or server type, not the wire type. It will slide across the top of the stick of butter and produce long, thin sections that melt quickly and evenly for my toast, pancakes and waffles.
- Susan R. in Virginia
DEAR HELOISE: I always have green olives in my refrigerator. I use my melon baller, which has a small hole in the center, to get the olives out of the jar. I can do this without contaminating the brine. I also am able to drain the brine because of the small hole, leaving me with just the olives.
- Diane J., via e-mail
DEAR HELOISE: When I make bread recipes calling for 3 tablespoons of honey or molasses, I find it exasperating to wait for the first tablespoon to drain so I can add the next. If the recipe also calls for oil, I add the oil first, then measure the sweetener using the now-oil-coated spoon. It pours out in a flash. - Mary D. in Virginia Send a money- or time-saving hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, Texas 78279-5000; fax to (210) 435-6473; or e-mail Heloise@Heloise.com
Food, Pages 40 on 03/13/2013
Print Headline: HELPFUL HINTS