Cook'n recipe organizer

Volume III
May, 2012

Newsletter Home / Kitchen Remedy

Food Stain Busters

By Calli Rhoades

It may not be cooking, but if you cook chances are, you have had this problem before - Food stains! I would like to pretend that this doesn't happen to me. Picture me (beautiful and skinny while we are at it), in my apron, in a blissfully clean kitchen, never making a mistake or spilling on my perfectly beautiful (designer, of course) clothing. Doesn't my hair look good in this dream? And my kids are so well-behaved! Okay, dream over!

Truth be told, I am my father's daughter and that means I have spilled food on just about every shirt I own, and probably the majority of the pants too! He always joked that if he put on a white or light-colored shirt he should just go ahead and put on a bib for the day too. Well, that's one lovely trait that didn't skip a generation... thanks Dad!

In honor of all the chocolaty recipes this month... and the chocolate stained shirt I am wearing at the moment (thanks to my toddler), I want to share some tips for getting food stains out of your duds!

Chocolate - Remove excess chocolate by using a dull knife or a spoon to remove any bits of chocolate from the fabric. Work carefully to make sure you don't spread the chocolate to clean parts of the clothing. Rinse with cold water. Gently rub in some liquid laundry detergent and allow it to soak for 5 minutes. Then soak for 15 minutes in cold water. Every 3-5 minutes, rub the stained area between your fingers and thumb to loosen the stain. Rinse thoroughly. Continue until no more stain can be removed. If an oily stain remains, add a stain remover stick, gel, or spray. Wash normally. Make sure that you check it before you put it in the dryer. If a stain remains, repeat steps. To prevent future stains, don't let your toddler snuggle you after Grandma has been sneaking her chocolate!

Oils - Mayo, salad dressing, and butter make for miserable stains. To get rid of them treat the area with a dry solvent (such as mineral spirits or acetone) in a well-ventilated room. Using an eyedropper, rinse with isopropyl alcohol; dry well. Spray diluted Dawn dishwashing-soap solution on any remaining residue, and soak the item in an enzyme detergent before washing.

Proteins (like eggs and blood) - Dilute Dawn dishwashing-soap solution with water and apply to stain, and let it sit; rinse with water. If stain remains, treat area with an enzyme detergent, and wash.

Coffee or Tea- Flush the stained area with lemon juice or white vinegar. If necessary, follow-up with a stronger bleach. To help remove sugar or milk, spray area with diluted Dawn, then wash.

Mustard - Flush stain with white vinegar and then scrub with Dawn detergent. Then wash.

Red Wine - Spray diluted Dawn solution on stain; Scrub. Flush with water, apply white vinegar, and 1 or 2 drops of ammonia to wet area. Flush with water. Treat with an enzyme detergent; wash. If stain is still there, use a color-safe bleach and rewash.

White Wine - Flush the stain with cold water, and spray with diluted Dawn solution. Treat area with an enzyme detergent, and then wash.

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