I have some odd shaped cabinets in my kitchen that seem conducive to hiding one or two things from me. Often, exasperated after a search for something I KNOW I have somewhere, I make a fresh resolve to sort everything out. But usually don't, and the problem gets worse as the days go by and my family rummages in the formerly neat and tidy cupboards.
So I went to it and found a number of things I was looking for. . .achiote paste, some cupcake baking cups and a small package of sesame seeds.
I also found some things I was NOT looking for: Two past-their-use-by-date things of mayonnaise, three huge packages of napkins, an opened bottle of salad dressing (In the cupboard! Not the fridge as it should have been!!), and several containers of Kosher Salt.
I had to concede defeat on the barely-used salad dressing and toss it. The napkins were no big deal as they can certainly be used up in this messy household. . .so long as I remember they are there!
But I struggled with the mayo. I hated to throw it out, but I also didn't feel comfortable giving it to my family.
And then there was the salt. The boxes don't fit in my spice cupboard, which is how they ended up stuffed in all corners of the kitchen. . .whomever was putting groceries away with me that day just looked for the first available slot! It won't go bad, but it takes up so much room in places I need space for actual food.
So what to do? Get grumpy? No! Re-Purpose!!!
The salt was easy. . .There are several ways to use salt in cleaning (post coming soon), plus it's required in preserving bacon (learn how to easily cure your own bacon HERE), which I decided to do. I also decided to make some smoked salt (here are some ideas on smoking) and some salt-seasoning blends (should post on that, too, shouldn't I?). So that pretty much solved my surplus salt issue.
That left the mayo. I just Could. Not. Throw. It. Out. Couldn't do it!! (Oh! The curse of chronic frugality!) So, I started a list of alternative uses that I knew of and did a little hunt for some more. Here's what I found:
- Hair Treatment: If you have dry, damaged hair, coat with a little mayo, wrap in plastic for an hour or over night and shampoo out. Leaves locks soft and moisturized!
- Exfoliant: Use on calloused elbows or heals. Just slather on and leave for an hour and then rub gently to get that hard skin to roll right off before washing with mild soap. If you have really, really thick callouses, you can repeat the process. I know of one person who applies to her heals and ankles, wraps her feet in plastic wrap and sleeps that way! I've only tried elbows, though, and I can tell you it works FABULOUSLY!
- Treat Lice: This was new to me. . .but, apparently, if you apply a thick layer, saturating all the hair and scalp, the oil in the mayo will kill the little buggers. Leave on for at least an hour and then wash out. . .use a shampoo good for oily hair to cut through all that mayo. The bonus should be lovely, soft locks!
- Remove Gooey Things: If you have gum in your hair, tar on your car, or glue residue, just work in some mayo, let sit for 10-15 minutes and wipe away with a clean rag. Thick goo may need several applications, but it really does work!
- Sunburn Relief: I am dreadfully prone to sunburn, even when wearing factor 100 and staying in the shade. It's tragic, really. . .I'm almost translucent! So I know this one well. When my aloe plant has been depleted, I reach for ice cold mayo. Stops the burning and the vinegar in mayo is a natural pain reliever. GENTLY rub on and leave until you can stand to take a cool shower!