Your Reading List

From poached eggs to odours in the microwave

Hi Reena,

A couple of questions about cooking poached eggs. Is there any way to prevent the eggs from sticking to the bottom of the pan? I have used both non-stick and aluminum pans but the eggs tend to stick. Also, I have been told to add a bit of vinegar to the water. What is the purpose of this? All the best.

— Vincent


Although some people think that vinegar is used to prevent eggs from sticking, it is actually added to help the egg hold its shape by causing the outer layer of the egg white to congeal faster. To prevent eggs from sticking, use a pan that is at least eight cm (three inches) deep so there is enough water to cover the eggs. Also, lightly coat the bottom and sides of the pan with shortening or a little oil before filling with water.


You are a great source of information. What is omega-3 and why is it important to take/have? My chiropractor suggested I take a good multivitamin high in vitamin B, calcium and omega-3.

— Esther

Hi Esther,

Omega-3 fatty acids are a family of essential nutrients. Studies have shown that when present in the diet over a long period of time they: decrease triglyceride levels, lower cholesterol, reduce risk of heart disease, aid in regulation of blood sugar levels, reduce the rate of inflammatory diseases like arthritis and migraine headaches, reduce platelet “stickiness” and therefore reduce the tendency towards arteriosclerosis (the clogging up of the arteries with cholesterol plaque), inhibit tumour growth and lower cancer risk. When added to the diet as a supplement they also have the ability to minimize the tendency of blood cells to clot.

If you are buying omega-3 in capsule form try to get a brand with the fish oil coming from heads and skins, with no fish liver oil. Fish liver oil, in addition to containing a rich source of omega-3, is also very rich in vitamin A, which makes it possible to have too much vitamin A if capsules are being taken every day.

P.S. Always check with your doctor before taking any medication/vitamins.

Hi Reena,

My recent house guest cooked a corncob, wrapped in wax paper, in my microwave for 20 minutes. Needless to say the microwave has a strong “burnt” odour and I can’t seem to get rid of it no matter how clean it looks.

— Alene


Combine lemon slices, vinegar or baking soda in water and heat in the microwave until the liquid boils over so that it spills into the corners. Wipe the surface. If the smell remains, store a big bowl of charcoal, coffee grounds or a bowl of baking soda in the microwave for at least a week when not in use. If the smell still remains, unplug the microwave and stuff it full of newspaper. Leave it for a week and the smell will soon be a distant memory!

Fabulous tip of the week

My daughter put her hoodie in the dryer to “warm it up.” She inadvertently left a lip balm in the pocket and it left “grease marks” all over it. I tackled the stain in the most unusual way. I used a waterless hand degreaser called “Orange.” I rubbed each spot individually and then washed it and hung it to dry. It worked BRILLIANTLY!

— Maxine

Presenting Home Sweet Home workshops across Canada. If you would like me to visit your area and present an all-day workshop, please call 204-320-2757 or email: [email protected]

I enjoy your questions and tips, keep them coming!

Check out my website:

About the author

Reena Nerbas's recent articles



Stories from our other publications