Tips and tricks with baking soda, along with a little history and science information.
Defined by Answer, baking soda is: ”A white crystalline compound, NaHCO3, with a slightly alkaline taste, used in making effervescent salts and beverages, artificial mineral water, pharmaceuticals, and fire extinguishers. Also called bicarbonate of soda, sodium bicarbonate.”
Is there a kitchen in America that does not contain at least one box of baking soda in the cup board, fridge, under the sink, or near the stove for dousing grease fires?
According to Reader’s Digest. com and About.com baking soda is whole lot more.
- It is a mechanical leavening agent, used to incorporate air into the batter of dough. This method depends on steam to give the food the lift it needs.
- It creates the base that accepts a hydrogen ion from an acid. Baking soda is 9 on the PH scale, while some vinegars and lemon juice are acids and a 2 on the PH scale. (There is science in our soda.).
- The alkaline crystalline structure of baking soda makes it a mildly abrasive cleanser used in tooth pastes, facial cleansing, and household cleaning. It works hard at removing plaque from tooth enamel while being less abrasive than commercial teeth whiteners. Baking soda can also be made into a paste to help shine chrome, and clean the oven
- Leave an open box in your microwave and fridge to keep the appliances fresher and unpleasant odors and flavors from your foods. Just do not forget to remove the box prior to using your microwave. Replace the boxes every three months.
- Use as an antacid by mixing ½ teaspoon baking soda in 3 to 4 oz. of warm water. Drink.
- Add ¼ cup of baking soda to 1 quart of warm water and clean pool toys without worrying about a harmful soapy residue remaining on the toys
- To aid in cleaning your barbecue grills use 3 parts baking soda to 1 pint warm water
- To clean drains pour ½ box of baking soda down the drain, follow with white vinegar. After the foam settles, repeat.
- To sooth tired feet and improve dryness or eczema soak for ½ hour in warm water and baking soda
- To relieve sinus infection add a dash of salt, a dash of baking soda and one tablespoon warm water and squirt into the nasal passages. Please do not disregard your doctor’s advice or consider this tip to be meant as medical counsel.
- Form a paste with baking soda and warm water to apply to bee and wasp stings
- When cooking dried beans, add ½ teaspoon to water to get rid of gases caused by carbon dioxide
- Add ½ cup baking soda to your wash load and boost your detergents cleaning power
- Remove hard water stains from your car’s chrome
- Use in a pinch for deodorant
- Reduce swelling from swollen eyelids by creating compresses with warm water and baking soda. Leave on eyes for ½ hour.
- Scatter over kitty litter or carpet to neutralize odors
- Help eliminate urine odors from furniture left by pets and children. Pour directly on the spot and allow it to absorb as much of the moisture as possible. Remove loose powder and use clean powder to scrub the area.
- Clean daily wear contacts
- Scrub your produce in a pot of cold water with 2 to 3 tablespoons baking soda with a clean wet sponge or vegetable brush. Rinse thoroughly prior to cooking.
- Soaking your raw fish steaks or filets for about an hour prior to cooking will remove the fishy smell. Soak fish in a bowl of could water containing 1 quart of water and 2 tablespoons baking soda. Rinse fish well before cooking.
- The acid in certain foods can be lowered with a pinch of baking soda. Adding a pinch of soda to your coffee before brewing or to tomatoes before serving is easier on the stomach.
- Using ½ teaspoon to 3 eggs while preparing an omelet creates a fluffier omelet.
- Baking soda can be used to substitute for yeast. An equal part of powdered vitamin C to an equal of baking soda so that the combined measurement equals to the required measurement of yeast for the recipe. There is an added bonus to this in that the dough will not need to rise prior to baking.
- Baking soda makes a good hand cleanser to remove foul odors
- Soak baby’s bottles, nipples, pacifiers, bottle brushes, and caps in a bowl of warm water and ½ box of baking soda. Rinse thoroughly and dry in the morning.
- Save money on dish washer detergent by making your own with 2 tablespoons borax and 2 tablespoons baking soda
- Make a past with warm water, baking soda, and salt to scrub cutting boards and counters
- Deodorize your dishwasher by sprinkling the bottom of your dishwasher with baking soda
- Add a few tablespoons baking soda to your dish water when washing dishes to aid in cutting grease
- Dish rags or sponges smelling foul? Soak overnight in 2 tablespoons baking soda and 2 drops of antibacterial dish detergent and 1 pint of warm water. Rinse with cool water in the morning.
- Let your thermos sit overnight with a baking soda solution of ¼ cup baking soda to 1 quart water. Use a bottle brush to help loosen residue, before filling. Leave overnight and it should wash much easier in the morning.
- Brew a quart of water and ¼ cup of baking soda in your coffee pot. Follow by brewing with clear water and rinsing thoroughly.
- Cover grease stains on counter tops and stoves with baking soda then wash with wet towel or sponge
- To remove coffee and tea stains from your mugs, coffee pots, or tea pots fill them with 4 tablespoons baking soda to 1 cup vinegar. If you prefer, you can substitute 2 tablespoons baking soda to the juice of ½ lemon. Boil and let simmer for 5 minutes. Scrub when cool, and rinse thoroughly.
- Deodorize your garbage cans
- Clean your pots and pans by simmering with a baking soda and water mixture. Rinse thoroughly and season lightly with oil.
- Tenderize a tough cut of meat by rubbing with baking soda and placing in the fridge for three to five hours. Rinse thoroughly prior to cooking.
- Help erase the nicks in countertops by scrubbing a paste of baking soda and water into the areas and scrubbing
- Help snuff out grease fires in the kitchen. When grease becomes inflamed while cooking, usually baking soda poured directly on the flame will put the fire out. This is not meant to advise anyone to battle an uncontrollable blaze in their home. Any fire that cannot be quickly snuffed should be considered serious. Occupants should leave the area immediately and call for help.
Baking soda was first used in America during colonial times, having been imported from England. In 1839 it was first produced in the United States, but not until 1846 was a factory built to manufacture baking soda according to Answers.com. Doctor Austin Church from Connecticut and John Dwight, a farmer from Massachusetts set up the factory, and began its manufacture.
Austin’s son, whose name was also John, owned a mill called Vulcan Spice Mills. The mill was represented by Vulcan, the Roman god of forge and fire and was represented by an arm and hammer. It was from this design that our current brand of Arm & Hammer Baking Soda was created.
Although baking soda has undergone some changes throughout time it has remained one of the best household products that money can buy.
Most of us are going to be surprised to find out that there is an oncologist in Rome Italy, Dr. Tullio Simoncini, destroying cancer tumors with sodium bicarbonate.[i] Sodium bicarbonate is safe, extremely inexpensive and unstoppably effective when it comes to cancer tissues. It’s an irresistible chemical, cyanide to cancer cells for it hits the cancer cells with a shock wave of alkalinity, which allows much more oxygen into the cancer cells than they can tolerate. Cancer cells cannot survive in the presence of high levels of oxygen. Sodium bicarbonate is, for all intent and purposes, an instant killer of tumors. Full treatment takes only days, as does another cancer treatment that heats the cancer cells with laser generated heat. [Credit to Maya's Mom.]
If you find yourself short on baking powder you can substitute with one part cream of tartar, one part corn starch, and two parts baking soda. Sometimes we find baking soda so useful in other areas of the home that we forget its usefulness in cooking.
Published in: Cooking