Soften a stick of butter or two
Place butter on a microwave-safe plate in a microwave and cook on high for 20 seconds for 2 sticks, 15 seconds for one.
Defrost a ice cube of baby food
Place in microwave safe bowl and cook on high for 25 seconds. Immediately remove from microwave and stir rapidly, breaking up any ice left into smaller pieces. Transfer to cool dish or container and stir until completely melted. The whole process takes about 1 minute from start to finish.
Make great (and easy) garlic mashed potatoes
Boil 4 medium potatoes (cubed) and 2-3 cloves roughly chopped garlic until soft. Drain. Add 1 tbsp butter. Mash together with potato masher or hand mixer. Add milk slowly while stirring or beating until desired consistency (about ¼ cup works for us). Stir in salt and pepper to taste.
Make perfect rice in a rice cooker
Rinse dry rice until water runs clear. In cooker bowl, stir together rice and water at a 1:2 ratio. Add a dash of olive oil and cook.
Sarah Walker Caron is a cookbook author, freelance writer and founder of Sarah’s Cucina Bella. She is the author of several cookbooks including The Super Easy 5-Ingredient Cookbook and One-Pot Pasta, both from Rockridge Press. A single mother to two kids in middle school, Sarah loves nightly family dinners, juicy tomatoes plucked fresh from the vine and lazy days on the beach. She also adores reading and traveling.