Re using and re cycling are the best ways for us to have a positive impact on the world in which we live. It is extremely important to both the natural environment and us. We must act fast as the amount of waste we create is increasing all the time.


There was a time when “waste not want not” was an adage followed and passed on to the next generation by the elders of the house. Proper disposal of unwanted things, re using, re cycling were taken care of easily and were never considered an effort. Today though the concept of “use and throw” rules the world, it comes with a very heavy price tag. Toxic wastes choking up the water bodies, no place in landfills, Acid rain, and the list is endless. So it now seems that in these modern times it has become all the more important that we learn to re- use and re- cycle innovatively and all by ourselves. Here, in this series, you will find that you can solve many a day to day problem quite easily, all by yourself with minimum effort and at the same time make re use and recycling a part of your daily routine. Ordinary household items lying around the house can sometimes help you save a great deal of time and money, and of course, the satisfaction of having achieved a purpose, is an added bonus. Do share your own ideas with us. We look forward your creative tips and suggestions, in addition to the ones mentioned here.

Aluminium Foil :

1. Prevent the edges of homemade pies from burning and getting overdone by covering them with strips of aluminium foil. Remember to take them off near the end of baking to crisp up the edges.

2. Keep your oven and pans clean by lining them with sheets of aluminium foil to catch those messy drips from gravies, cheese, tomatoes etc.

3. Sharpen your scissors: used aluminium foil can be great for sharpening scissors. Fold a used sheet before you throw it away, into several layers ( seven or eight times is good enough) and start cutting.

4. Polish your dull and tarnished silverware easily by lining a bowl with aluminium foil. Fill the bowl with cold water, add two teaspoons of salt and leave your dull silverware in this solution for five minutes. Rinse off and pat dry with a soft cloth.

5. For long term storage of clean silverware wrap each individual piece tightly in a plastic or cellophane paper and cover it with aluminium foil. This prevents tarnishing.

6. Aluminium foil can save the day if you suddenly need a funnel, a piping bag , a palette for your child’s painting project, a protective layer on your spectacles arms if you have used henna or hair dye and want to sit down to read for some time.


Apples :

1. Apples produce ethylene gas, a natural ripening agent, and can be affectively used to ripen raw vegetables and fruits like green tomatoes etc. Keep a ripe apple in a paper bag with green tomatoes or any other raw fruit or vegetables that might need to ripen, for a day or two.

2. Brown sugar often hardens into a lump when exposed to humidity. Solve this problem place a piece of apple in a zip pouch along with hardened sugar, Seal it tightly and leave it in a day place for a day or two. Sugar will soon be soft enough as before.

3. Absorb extra salt in soups, gravies etc. Apples, just like potatoes can absorb that extra bit of accidently added salt in your gravies and other dishes. Remember to cook the dish for a few minutes with a wedge of apple in it.

4. Running short of flowers and decorative centre pieces just when the guests are about to come? Core two apples, place candles in the centre and add a few fresh leaves around the arrangement for an impressive center piece on your dining table.

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- Veena Shyam Raja