Sure, tea towels dry your dishes and hands. But they can do more than that! Especially when they look so pretty. In terms of sustainability, we should be getting the most out of our dish towels - for example, by using them as follows:
1. DRY YOUR PEPPERMINT!My salad spinner broke apart a few months ago, so I've been drying salad greens and herbs in clean cotton dish towels ever since. Here's how it works: roll your greens into a tea towel and bring the ends of it together. Then turn the tea towel and twirl it around. Alternatively, you can wrap the greenery carefully and press the water out. That's it! Dry greens with no salad spinner.
2. PROTECT YOUR DOUGH
If you have baked your own bread during the quarantine, you are probably familiar with this tip. To make the dough nice and airy, cover it when it rises. Put it in a bowl and cover it with a cotton cloth - this will prevent it from drying out. It is even recommended to use a slightly damp tea towel. Some people still use plastic wrap for this, but you can do better!
3. MAKE A (CUTE) SHOPPING BAG
If you can sew a straight line, you can also make pretty drawstring bags to replace plastic bags. And the best part? No hemming required! Fold the cloth in half and sew the sides together. Turn the bag right side out and pull a piece of cord through the hem of the tea towel to make the drawstring. Done!
4. PACK YOUR GIFTS - SUSTAINABLY
Use a tea towel to wrap gifts with the Furoshiki technique. For example: to wrap a bottle of wine or olive oil, lay out the dish towel and place the bottle at an angle in one corner. Roll the cloth with the bottle to the opposite corner. Then fold the ends of the tea towel over the bottle and tie a bow. Ta-da!
5. MAKE YOUR RICE FLUFFY!
When cooking rice, wrap the lid of the pot in a tea towel (for safety reasons, lift the hanging edges of the towel off the stove). The cloth prevents the steam from condensing on the lid and dripping back onto the rice, which would make it muddy and clumpy. Instead, you get juicy, tender, fluffy rice!
Do you have any other ideas on how to get the best out of tea towels? We look forward to hearing from you in the comments below!