7 Microwave Cooking Hacks

Blossom Lady
Feb 25, 2022 08:29 AM
7 Microwave Cooking Hacks

A microwave is good for more than just re-heating leftovers. True, you’re not going to win any awards nuking stuff in your microwave oven, but it sure does save you a lot of time and makes for a decent substitute when you don’t have an oven around. So arm yourself with microwave-safe bowls and plates and try out these tricks—from crisping bacon, scrambling eggs, and frothing milk to making edible cheese bowls, baking a brownie in a cup, and turning out crunchy no-fry potato chips (these are seriously so good). One word of caution before you get to it: microwaves vary in size and power, so it’s best to get to know your own microwave a little better rather than following the specified times to a tee.

1. Quickly peel a head of garlic

7 Microwave Cooking Hacks
No one likes peeling garlic—it's messy, time-consuming, and the garlic juice (and smell) sticks to your fingers all day long. So what's the trick? Heat a head of garlic in the microwave for about 20 seconds and the cloves will slide right out of their skins, hassle-free. Game-changer.
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2. Dry herbs in the microwave

7 Microwave Cooking Hacks
When it comes to drying ingredients like herbs, we automatically think of an oven. But maybe, what we should be thinking about is the microwave, since it does the same job in a fraction of the time. Just layer washed, dried, and de-stemmed herbs on a paper plate or paper towel and microwave on high in bursts of 30 seconds, flipping the leaves each time. Depending on what herb you're drying, this will take two to four minutes.
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3. Make scrambled eggs for breakfast in just 3 minutes

7 Microwave Cooking Hacks
Let's face it: Eggs made in the microwave will never completely match up to eggs cooked on a stove. But when all you have is three minutes to get breakfast going in the morning, microwaved eggs are a brilliant substitute. Scrambled eggs are the easiest—beat eggs with a little milk and cheese in a coffee mug, sprinkle with salt and pepper (plus herbs, if you're feeling fancy), then zap it in the microwave for a minute and a half, stopping once at the halfway point to stir. If poached eggs are more your style though, that can happen too.
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4. Make milk foam without a frother or a machine

7 Microwave Cooking Hacks
To be honest, the microwave won't single-handedly froth milk for you. But if you fill a jar with milk, halfway or less, and then put in some of your own muscle power to vigorously shake the jar with the lid on until the milk froths and doubles in size (about 30 seconds), then the microwave can carry it from there. Take the lid off, microwave the frothed milk for another 30 seconds, and watch the foam rise to the top and stabilize. Pour the milk into your coffee using a spoon to hold back the foam, then scoop the foam on top and enjoy a café-style latte. Just remember to wipe off that embarrassing foam moustache.
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5. Make brownies in a mug

7 Microwave Cooking Hacks
Of all the great things that can come in a mug, a microwaved brownie has got to be the best. Just mix all the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, cocoa, salt, and cinnamon) in the mug and mix in the wet ingredients (oil, water, and vanilla) until there are no lumps. Then, nuke everything in the microwave on high until the mixture is cooked through, about a minute and 40 seconds (though this might vary slightly depending on your microwave). Microwaveable brownies are perfect for when the sugar craving strikes out of the blue. Just make sure you have ice cream handy.
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6. Make edible bowls out of parmesan cheese

7 Microwave Cooking Hacks
Get ready for some gourmet badassery à la microwave. Make edible cheese bowls to, you know, serve salad in and get everyone talking about how totally creative you are. Getting the first one right is a little tricky—you'll need to get two nesting bowl (to serve as moulds) and spread grated cheese out in a circle slightly larger than the rim of the bowl on a parchment paper on a plate. Cook this on high in the microwave until golden brown and then—working at lightening speed—get the cooked cheese out, flip it over an upturned bowl (with the parchment attached), and press a second bowl over the hot parchment/cheese. Once you get the hang of it, you'll start turning them out like an edible-cheese-bowl factory.
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7. Make no-fry potato chips

7 Microwave Cooking Hacks
If you can slice potatoes to just the right thickness (about an eighth of an inch), these chips will be the most wonderous things ever to come out of your microwave—slightly crinkled and surprisingly crispy, with a sweet, earthy potato flavor. All you have to do is arrange thinly-sliced potatoes in a single layer on a plate and microwave for three minutes at a time, decreasing the power level and flipping the potatoes with each round. Sure, they involve a bit of effort—especially if you don't have a mandolin to slice up the potatoes extra-thin—but think how cool you'll feel biting a hand-cut, homemade, no-fry chip.
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8. Get more juice from a lemon or lime by nuking it

7 Microwave Cooking Hacks
The next time you're juicing lemons for lemonade or limes for a daiquiri, microwave them for 10-20 seconds, until their skin is warm to the touch. Thanks to some mumbo-jumbo cooking science (in short: heat excites the water molecules making the flesh softer and weaker, which makes the lemon easier to squeeze and the membranes holding the juice easier to burst), you'll get more juice out of your lemons. Just resist the urge to serve your guests a science lesson with their drink.
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