Use vacuum attachment to clean knife block

Dear Readers: Have you taken a good look at your knife block lately? Does it look a little dusty and grimy? What about the slots?

To clean them, use the crevice tool on the vacuum attachment. This should remove most dirt, dust and crumbs. Also, you can “wash” a wood block with mild soap and warm water, letting the water run down into the slots. Air-dry, or use your hair dryer to dry the slots.

This may not seem like a big deal, but do take a look down those slots, and I think you will be surprised! — Heloise


Dear Heloise: Even in the summer, when my kids are sick, they only want soup to eat. The soup is too hot to eat right off the stove, so I always add one or two ice cubes before serving it to them. This makes the soup ready to eat. — Stephanie W., via email


Dear Heloise: I love cooking with the fresh-squeezed juices of lemons, limes and oranges, but it can be hard to keep the seeds out of the food. I cut these fruits in half and wrap them in a thin layer of cheesecloth with a rubber band. It’s easy to squeeze the juice out while keeping the seeds trapped in the cheesecloth. — Judy T. in Pennsylvania


Dear Heloise: Here is a baking/ cooking hint that I recently discovered: When I take out a new stick of margarine or butter for my butter dish, I partially take off the wrapper.

I then take a butter knife and make indents by each of the tablespoon markings on the wrapper before removing it completely. When I need a specific number of tablespoons, I just count off the markings to measure. — Gerri S. in Florida

Hints from Heloise is syndicated by King Features Syndicate. Send great hints to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, TX 78279-5000; by fax, 210-HELOISE (435-6473); or by email,

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