One of the things about this lockdown period is we start noticing things around the house that could do with a bit of fixing, mending and repurposing. And this is as good a time as any to tackle some of the niggly little things that you would otherwise never get round to. To my amazement I have found myself turning to an old baking friend time and again as I’ve tried to fix things around the house. So here are my tips for the amazing store cupboard stalwart — Baking Soda!
Yep — There are many items in your kitchen that can be used for multiple purposes. But one that stands out above the rest is baking soda. Yes, that’s right, simple, every day, right out of your pantry baking soda. I hope you have some in your stocks!
Here are ten ways you can use baking soda that goes beyond simply adding it to your favorite baked goods recipe:
• Did you know that you can use baking soda as earth-friendly alternative to unclog your drain? You sure can! It’s simple to do, less expensive than the store bought product, and just as effective.
Here’s what you do: Pour one cup of regular table salt, one cup of baking soda, and half a cup of plain white vinegar down the drain. Leave it alone for 15 minutes and then pour two quarts of boiling water into the sink. Follow this by running the hot water into the sink for at least one minute.
You’ll be amazed how effectively this combination works. The drains will be clean and you won’t have added anything toxic to the drain system.
• Baking soda, when mixed with salt, is also an effective stain remover and scouring powder. Mix one cup of baking powder with one cup of salt. Then use this mixture the same way you would any other scouring powder. Again, an effective mixture that is less harmful to the environment.
• Sprinkle some baking soda on your carpet and let it sit for 10 minutes. When the time is up, vacuum away any stale odors that may have settled in your carpet.
• Add a little baking soda to your dishwasher the next time you’re loading it. The baking soda will give your cleaner an extra boost to get your dishes sparkling clean.
• Make a poultice of baking soda and water then put it on a bee sting. This will ease the pain in no time.
• Adding two teaspoons of baking soda to lukewarm bath water will help ease the pain of chicken pox.
• Have you ever had a small grease fire on the stove or braai/barbeque when you were cooking? Sprinkle baking soda on the fire can safely put it out.
• Does your cat’s box smell? Thoroughly clean the litter box, let dry in the sun, and then sprinkle enough baking soda in the bottom to cover. Now add your litter. The baking soda will help absorb the odors.
• Making an equal mixture of baking soda and laundry detergent will stretch your detergent and make your laundry smell fresh.
• And, if your refrigerator has a sour odour, place an open box of baking soda in it to absorb those odors. Don’t forget to change the box once a month to keep your refrigerator odour free.
Isn’t that amazing?!
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