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April 26, 2009

Different uses of vinegar

In the Kitchen and for the Cook

Refresh your refrigerator
Did you know that vinegar might be an even more effective safe cleanser for your refrigerator than baking soda? Use equal parts white vinegar and water to wash both the interior and exterior of your fridge, including the door gasket and the fronts of the vegetable and fruit bins. To prevent mildew growth, wash the inside walls and bin interiors with some full-strength vinegar on a cloth. Also use undiluted vinegar to wipe off accumulated dust and grime on top of your refrigerator. Of course, you'll still want to put that box of baking soda inside your refrigerator to keep it smelling clean when you're done.

Steam-clean your microwave
To clean your microwave, place a glass bowl filled with a solution of 1/4 cup vinegar in 1 cup water inside, and zap the mixture for five minutes on the highest setting. Once the bowl cools, dip a cloth or sponge into the liquid and use it to wipe away stains and splatters on the interior.

Disinfect cutting boards
To disinfect and clean your wood cutting boards or butcher block countertop, wipe them with full-strength white vinegar after each use. The acetic acid in the vinegar is a good disinfectant, effective against such harmful bugs as E. coli, Salmonella, and Staphylococcus. Never use water and dishwashing detergent, because it can weaken surface wood fibers. When your wooden cutting surface needs deodorizing as well as disinfecting, spread some baking soda over it and then spray on undiluted white vinegar. Let it foam and bubble for five to ten minutes, then rinse with a cloth dipped in clean cold water.

Deodorize your garbage disposal
Here's an incredibly easy way to keep your garbage disposal unit sanitized and smelling clean: Mix equal parts water and vinegar in a bowl, pour the solution into an ice cube tray, and freeze it. Then simply drop a couple of "vinegar cubes" down your disposal every week or so, followed by a cold-water rinse.

Wash out your dishwasher

To keep your dishwasher operating at peak performance and remove built-up soap film, pour 1 cup undiluted white vinegar into the bottom of the unit -- or in a bowl on the top rack. Then run the machine through a full cycle without any dishes or detergent. Do this once a month, especially if you have hard water. Note: If there's no mention of vinegar in your dishwasher owner's manual, check with the manufacturer first.

Clean china, crystal, and glassware
Put the sparkle back in your glassware by adding vinegar to your rinse water or dishwater.
  • To keep your everyday glassware gleaming, add 1/4 cup vinegar to your dishwasher's rinse cycle.

  • To rid drinking glasses of cloudiness or spots caused by hard water, heat up a pot of equal parts white vinegar and water (use full-strength vinegar if your glasses are very cloudy), and let them soak in it for 15-30 minutes. Give them a good scrubbing with a bottle brush, then rinse clean.

  • Add 2 tablespoons vinegar to your dishwater when cleaning your good crystal glasses. Then rinse them in a solution of 3 parts warm water to 1 part vinegar and allow them to air-dry. You can also wash delicate crystal and fine china by adding 1 cup vinegar to a basin of warm water. Gently dunk the glasses in the solution and let dry.

  • To get coffee stains and other discolorations off china dishes and teacups, try scrubbing them with equal parts vinegar and salt, followed by rinsing them under warm water.

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