Thought that salt shaker on your table was only good for seasoning an otherwise bland dish? Or perhaps something to throw down on the pavement to prevent a lawsuit during icy weather? Turns out salt actually has a number of innovative – albeit strange – uses related to health, cooking and food preparation.
1. Got Milk?
Add a pinch of salt (and seriously, keep it to a very small pinch!) to a carton of milk to help preserve its freshness.
Eat a lot of eggs? Then be sure to keep salt at hand! Not sure if those eggs at the bottom of the fridge are any good? Drop ‘em in a glass of water with 2 tbsp of salt – if they sink to the bottom, they’re still fresh, but if they rise to the top, you should probably give them a pass! Need a use for that salt water (and those good eggs)? Try boiling them in salt water – it’ll make them easier to peel! Dropped an egg on the floor? Cover with salt and let sit for 20 minutes – it’ll make clean up a snap!
3. Genie in a Bottle:
If that water bottle you’ve been toting to the gym is beginning to smell a little less than pleasant, try sprinkling in a little salt. Not only will it sop up any remaining moisture (often the culprit behind the offending odor) but it will also sweeten and deodorize the container. Just remember to rinse before your refill! As a side note, this same trick will also work with your stinkiest sneakers!
4. Coffee Break:
You consider yourself a bit of a coffee connoisseur so you know when that coffee’s been overcooked. The solution? Add some salt – it’ll take care of the bitterness (and can later be used with ice cubes to clean the coffee pot!)
5. Itch Factor:
Hot, cold, hot, cold. Season changes can definitely take a toll on the skin. Reduce the itch associated with dry skin – and soften up scaly patches – by soaking in a tub filled with 1 cup of table salt or sea salt.
6. Burning Up:
You take a sip of your new green tea and grimace. It’s not the taste, it’s the freakin’ temperature! Soothe a severe burn in your mouth by rinsing with a solution of 8 ounces of water and 1 tbsp sea salt roughly every hour. The solution will not only reduce the pain, but will also promote healing. And, as a bonus, this same solution can also be used if you bite your tongue or cheek.
You didn’t want to go camping in the first place, but you conceded and now you’re covered in bug bites. Rather than sulking through the rest of the trip, apply a thick paste of salt and water to a bee sting or bug bite and allow to dry. It will help relieve the itch and pain (though it’s not going to do much to help in your plight to head home!)
8. Tooth and Nail:
You remembered to pack your toothbrush, but the toothpaste? Well…uhh… that fell off the map. Not to worry. Grab some good ol’ table salt and mix with two parts baking soda, grind on a board (you’ll feel a little drug lordish, but work with it) then dip your toothbrush in the mixture and brush away! Not only will it remove plaque, it’s also a pretty decent tooth whitener!
9. Brown Bag:
Thought adding lemon juice was the only way to prevent potatoes and apples from turning brown once they’re exposed to air? Turns out submerging them in a solution of cold water and table salt will also do the trick (and again, won’t have any effect on taste!)
10. Odor Eater:
You’ve been slaving over the stove all day to cook your honey a tasty treat, but the odor of old onions is bound to put the skids on the romance. Try sprinkling your hands with salt, add some vinegar (malt or white works best), rub your hands together and rinse. Voila – smell free – and soft – hands that’ll beg to be held!
The innovative uses for NaCl go on and on! Share your favorites in the comment boards!