Home is where the heart lies, isn’t it? And what better way to satiate the heart but with some comfort food! So here are 20 hacks that you can go ahead and incorporate in your daily life to make hostel life or life away from home a little easy!
1. Electric Kettle
One of the best measures while living in a hostel or somewhere where you don’t want to invest too much on cooking utensils and tools is to get an electric kettle. They come very handy for making a lot of easy dishes that require only boiled water; instant noodles or just some boiled eggs, for example. Have a roommate? Great! You both can invest in buying the electric kettle together or if you know someone who is willing to let you rent one then even better and cheaper! It will be helpful for the all-nighters that you have to pull off during the examination days or due to any other projects or assignments when you can brew yourself a hot cup of coffee to keep that wretched sleepiness at bay!
2. Revamp your instant noodles!
Bored of the monotonous taste of those Maggi, Yippee or Top Ramen noodles? Well, use any one or a combination of these ingredients to make them taste a lot better- scrambled eggs, shredded cheese, oregano, pepper, pasta sauce, ground herbs, etc. Try them and surely your meal will taste a lot better and yummier! If there is some leftover chicken from last night’s dinner, don’t forget to add it too. Don’t bother about heating them up separately. Just chuck them into the pan or the electric kettle while making the noodles and voila! You’re sorted!
3. Store Bread the Correct Way
So we all know how bread can come to the rescue as a quick remedy to sudden hunger pangs in the form of various easy recipes. But often we see excess bread going to waste due to lack of proper storage? So how can we prevent it from becoming stale?
Bread should be kept at room temperature wrapped in plastic for no more than two days. If however, your room seems to be a little on the humid side, then move on to freezing extra bread straight away. Defrost the frozen bread at room temperature before re-using it. However, don’t keep it longer than the expiry date mentioned on the packet in which you bought it in the first place.
4. Stock up with Fruits and Nuts
Fruits and nuts will come in handy as a quick and healthy cure to cravings. Moreover, you can use them to put together different healthy salads as well. So stock them up to serve your sudden hunger in a nourishing and fulfilling way!
5. Add Salt to Water to make it Boil Quickly
Water with salt heats up faster than pure water because the heat capacity of the former is less than the latter. This means that it takes slighter energy to raise the temperature. So it will reach boiling point quicker than that of pure water.
Keep cling film wraps at your disposal as they can serve multiple purposes. This one is the ultimate lazy person hack. Too lethargic to wash your dishes? Well, guess what? You won’t have to! Just wrap your plate with some cling film, put your food in, and you’re good to go! When you’re done, just take the wrap out and throw it away. Well, if you’re not even active enough to do this, my friend, you need help!
7. Fish for Discounts
A lot of online food ordering websites and apps provide discounts on regular intervals to attract more customers. The most common example is Domino’s which offers a Buy one get one free offer each week on a particular day of the week. Keep an eye out for such discounts or go and surf the internet to find out more if you’re looking for something specific. Moreover, the apps usually offer referral points. That means if you get your friends or family to download the apps based on your referral codes you get more points which add up as discounts that you can avail later when ordering from there.
8. Store Natural Butter Upside Down
To keep natural butter such as peanut butter, almond butter, etc. creamier and in a better condition, keep them stored with their containers upside down. They will last longer and stay well preserved.
9. Paper Cups and Plates
Instead of dishes use disposable paper cups and plates, which will save you from the pain of washing the dishes. Also, you won’t run the risk of being in the guilt of wasting money if you decide to throw a vessel at someone in a fit of rage! A paper plate thrown at someone will safely get your message across of being enraged without actually harming the person you are angry at whatsoever! See multiple advantages! *wink*
10. The Sealing Hack!
Bought a packet of chips but not hungry enough to finish it all? Use the cap of a pen to seal your half-eaten packet of chips! If you’re a girl, then you can put your clean hairclip to this task as well! Also, you can cut a plastic bottle up with the cap on and use it to seal a packet and keep it air-tight as shown in the image.
11. Start Labelling
Share your room with someone who sneaks into your portion of the ration and later denies it saying it wasn’t yours in the first place? Well, keep your stuff labeled and marked with a marker or a sharpie to avoid the awkwardness of charging your room-mate later for the sudden disappearance of your groceries. Moreover, you won’t forget what that mysterious container in your fridge contains that you had maybe kept their weeks ago for a cause that is long lost now.
12. Start Saving
Start maintaining a piggy-bank where you store the change or notes of smaller denominations regularly. Make it a point to not touch it for at least two – three weeks, and after that, you will have a sufficient amount to treat yourself to that dish you had been longing to have but were apprehensive because of the cost.
13. Chewing Gum
Feeling a sudden pang of hunger but afraid to compromise your diet? Keep chewing gums handy for such occasions. They will help you avoid the risk of over eating on one hand and will put your face to some exercise on the other.
14. Use paper to cover the shelves of your fridge
This way you can make your fridge look a bit more personalized and quirky with differently patterned paper. You will also not have to worry about cleaning the shelves for a extended period or at times when you spill soup or something over while putting it inside the fridge. In such case, just take the paper out and replace it.
15. Recycle the egg cartons
Don’t just throw them away. Recycle them to grow kitchen herbs on your own! So the next time you coo,k you will have some fresh herbs at your disposal too!
16. Multiple Uses of Vegetable Peeler
Don’t just peel vegetables with it, make chocolate shavings, slivers of cheese, citrus zest, fruit carvings, vegetable rings etc. with the help of your peeler.
17. The Hair-Straightener Hack!
Okay, time for a mind-blowing quirky hack! Feel like having a quick bite? Cheese sandwich to the rescue! Spread some cheese between two slices of bread and wrap them with some aluminium foil. Now use your hair straighter as you would on your hair with the foil wrap in between the tongs of the Straightener in place of hair. Set the heat from medium to high. And there! You’ve made yourself a cheese sandwich in the wackiest way possible within a couple of minutes!
18. Garlic Clove
Feeling lazy to spend time in separating the cloves of garlic. Here’s an easy hack. Put the chunk of garlic inside a covered cup or mug and shake it vigorously. You will find the garlic cloves separated!
19. Easy Mixing
Feeling too lazy to stir your ingredients or mixtures for a recipe? A quick hack is to dump them into a covered cup and shake them hard. Make sure that the lid is closed tightly to avoid the mess.
20. Easy Recipes
Last but not the least, try out easy recipes that you can find in abundance all over the internet which will help you save time, and enjoy tasty meals at the same time.
Here’s some you can try-
Noodles, Sandwiches, Fruit Salads, Soups, Fried Chicken, Fried Potato, The 3-Ingredient Chocolate Mug Cake, Mug Pizza, etc.
Try these tricks to hack your culinary way into an easier hostel life. Enjoy. Bon appetite!