The Right Way to Clean Your Grill

After grilling, cleaning your grill is essential to ensure that it lasts for as long as possible. However, there is some debate about the right way to clean gas grills. This video offers some advice.

Despite some horror stories about bristles from wire brushes sticking to food, they are still the most effective way to clean after grilling. A ball of aluminum foil is a good stand-in, but avoid trying the trick of placing a sheet of foil over the grill grates to loosen debris. This can cause a flare-up.

Grilling aficionados will find everything that they need at Friedmans Appliance, including gas and electric grills and accessories. To find out more about all of our appliances in Pleasant Hill, please call (925) 808-2950.

The Definitive Guide to Cleaning Your Dishwasher

Your dishwasher does hard work every day to keep your dishes clean, but how do you make sure the machine itself gets the same attention? Like all your appliances, your dishwasher needs to be cleaned from time to time to ensure it can do its job with your pots, pans, dishes, glasses, and silverware. Here is everything you need to know about keeping your dishwasher in clean and in peak condition.

Start with the Outside

If your appliance has a plastic front, then warm, soapy water is all you need to make it look its best. If you have a stainless steel model, then turn to glass cleaner to remove grime as well as fingerprints and smudges. Spray the cleaners on a cloth or paper towel before wiping down the front of the machine. If you spray the cleaner directly onto the dishwasher, you run the risk of ruining the electronic control buttons.

Clean the Filter

Cleaning the filter is the most important part of keeping your dishwasher clean. Most new dishwashers have filters that have to be manually cleaned, since they don’t have grinders to self-clean the filter. Manual-clean filters have become popular because they make dishwashers much quieter, but they are also prone to clogs if they aren’t cleaned regularly. Pull out the filter and wash the individual parts under warm water in the sink, using a small brush to remove debris if necessary. Do this about once a week to prevent clogs.

Remove Odors

An easy fix for odors in your dishwasher is white vinegar. Put a small bowl of finger on the bottom shelf of your dishwasher and run it. The wash cycle will splash the vinegar around and then rinse it off, leaving your machine smelling fresh.

Are you in the market for new appliances? Friedmans Appliance offers an extensive selection of dishwashers, ranges, refrigerators, and much more. Contact our appliance store in Pleasant Hill today at (925) 808-2950 to learn more about our selection.

The Beginner's Guide to Fine Wine

Are you starting to dabble in the world of wine? As your palate expands, so too will your need for storage. The one appliance that wine aficionados can’t live without is a wine refrigerator, which keeps all of your bottles at the perfect temperature, so that they’re ready to enjoy when you are. Some models allow for different temperature settings in different regions, allowing you to adapt your temperatures to incorporate a range of styles. If you’re new to enjoying wine and want to develop your knowledge and your taste buds, this guide will help you find the best bottles.

Learn the Sniff Test

You have probably seen wine experts sniff a glass of wine before taking a sip. Doing so helps you understand the different flavors that are in the wine, so that you’re ready to analyze more in-depth when you actually take a sip. Start by taking a few, quick sniffs of the wine, and then move the glass away from your nose. Try to come up with a list of different fruits and herbs you smell in the wine. After a few more sniffs, try to isolate the undertones of the scents to come up with a full list of all of the tastes you think might be present.

Aerate Your Sip

The best way to take your first sip of a glass is to suck it up as though you were using a straw. This turns your lips into a wine aerator, so you get the fullness of the taste. Swish the wine around in your mouth to appreciate all of the flavors. Determine if you can taste the aromas you smelled, and decide if the wine tastes complex, balanced, or harmonious. You can also taste for hints of poor quality, like acidity or a leathery quality.

Take Notes

As you begin tasting wines, it helps to keep notes on what you like and don’t like. Over time, your palate will become trained to recognize your preferences and to know right away if a wine is right for you.

Stock up on your favorite bottles and store them in a new wine cellar from Friedmans Appliance. We have an extensive selection of appliances, from wine refrigerators to gas grills, at prices you can’t beat. For more information, please call (925) 808-2950.

Spotlight on Dryer Capacity

When you’re shopping for a new dryer, one of the factors to consider is capacity. Appliance stores stock dryers that range from compact units to mega-capacity options. Getting the one that best fits your needs will not only make it easier to do your laundry but will also ensure that your dryer works as efficiently as possible for you.

Most people will benefit from having a standard, full-size dryer, which is about 7.3 to 8.3 cubic feet in size. However, for households with one or two people without heavy bedding to wash, a compact dryer—which can be as small as 3.4 cubic feet—may be sufficient. Mega-capacity dryers are between 8.4 and 9.0 cubic feet in size and are suited to large families and industrial use. Generally, your dryer should have about twice the capacity of your washer.

The team at Friedmans Appliance can help you select the right dryer in Pleasant Hill for your needs. For more information about our selection, call our appliance store at (925) 808-2950.

What Size Chest Freezer Should I Get?

A chest freezer can expand your storage space and make it easier to keep your upright freezer attached to your refrigerator more organized. This size of freezer you need depends on a number of different factors, including your preferences. Your appliance store can help guide you through the process of selecting the right freezer.

To start narrowing down your options, measure the space you have for your freezer, being sure to account for space to open the lid and easily access the items inside. Keep in mind that the door will open vertically. Next, consider your shopping habits. If you like to buy in bulk, then you will need a chest freezer that is substantial enough to accommodate your haul. If you only have a small amount of overflow from your upright freezer, than a small chest freezer should meet your needs.

Let the experienced professionals at Friedmans Appliance help you choose the right chest freezer for your home at a price that fits your budget. For more information about our selection of home appliances in Pleasant Hill, please call (925) 808-2950.

How Long Does Perishable Food Last? (And How to Extend the Freshness)

Even the best refrigerators and freezers in the world can’t keep perishable food fresh forever. Spoiled food not only tastes and smells bad, but it can also cause dangerous cases of food poisoning. By knowing the shelf life of food that you stock in your refrigerator, as well as a few tricks for making it last as long as possible, you can maximize your grocery budget and protect your family’s health. Here is what you need to know.

Perishable Food Shelf Lives

Most kinds of meat as well as leftovers last about three to five days in the refrigerator. Here is a breakdown of some of the most common perishable items people have in their fridges and a look at how long it is safe to keep them:

  • Hamburger/other ground meats – 1 to 2 days
  • Steaks – 3 to 5 days
  • Roasts – 3 to 5 days
  • Poultry – 1 to 2 days
  • Soups with vegetables or meat – 3 to 4 days
  • Milk – 5 to 7 days (check the sell by date)
  • Cheese – Depends on the type of cheese. Soft cheeses spoil faster than hard cheeses.

With any kind of perishable food, let your nose and eyes be your guide. If your food smells or looks like it could be spoiled, then don’t eat it, even if it is within the recommended safety window.

Keeping Food Fresh for Longer

There are many strategies you can use to improve the freshness of your food. Try these tricks to get the longest possible life out of your perishable foods:

  • Line your vegetable drawers with paper towels to absorb excess moisture
  • Rinse your berries with vinegar and then water before refrigerating
  • Wrap your celery in aluminum foil
  • Freeze meat you don’t plan to use within a day or two of buying

At Friedmans Appliance, our selection of refrigerators and freezers in Pleasant Hill means there is something that is right for every home. Contact us today to learn more about our selection of home appliances by calling (925) 808-2950.

Redefining the Modern Kitchen with Viking

Viking is the leading manufacturer of kitchen ranges and stovetops for serious home cooks. The brand leads the way in bringing professional-grade products into residential kitchens and has been the standard setter for home appliances since the 1980s, when they began to marry professional performance with residential needs.

Watch this video to learn how Viking is continuing this trend via their partnership with Middleby. Middleby is a highly rated manufacturer of professional cooking appliances, and they bring that knowledge to Viking’s residential appliance lines.

Bring the quality of Viking into your kitchen with the huge selection and unbeatable prices of Friedmans Appliance. To learn more about the products at our appliance store near Pleasant Hill, call (925) 808-2950.

Broiler Basics for Beginners

Many home cooks have a love/hate relationship with their broilers. Although broilers are great for quick cooking and getting the perfect sear, there seems to be little wiggle room between done perfectly and burned. Fortunately, there are a few tricks you can use to turn your grill into your best friend, so you can get the maximum use out of your appliance. The next time that you decide to broil, keep this advice in mind.

Look at the Shape of Your Broiler

Not all broilers are designed the same. Some have top burners that span the roof the oven, while others may have a rack down the middle with flames or heat sources that come out of the side. Knowing the shape of your broiler will help position your food correctly, so that it cooks evenly. With some experimentation, you may notice that with your broiler’s positioning, you need to rotate your food or put thicker items on a certain side of the range to get the doneness that you want.

Preheat Your Broiler

Cooking with your broiler is like grilling, and just like your grill, preheating makes a difference. Most broilers need about five to 10 minutes to heat up thoroughly, and it is time well spent to get the best outcomes for your food. Without preheating, your food is likely to cook unevenly or cook through before you achieve the crust you want on the outside.

Crack the Oven Door

Although it may seem like cracking the door to your oven will simply release heat, doing so when you’re broiling is a smart move. Opening the door a crack prevents moisture from building up, which in turn will help your food caramelize more effectively.

Good broiling starts with the right oven. Visit Friedmans Appliance to see our wide selection of ranges as well as all of our other home appliances. Speak to one of our team members today about your appliance needs by calling (925) 808-2950.

How Do You Clean a Big Green Egg?

The Big Green Egg is designed to be low-maintenance, and it essentially cleans itself during day-to-day use. However, it’s a good idea to give it a deep clean from time to time, so that it continues to operate at its peak performance.

After each use, close the dome and the vents to allow the heat to burn off the residue left from cooking. Before your next use, remove any debris that is left over. When you notice a build-up of grease and debris on the drum, it’s time for deep cleaning. Because the Big Green Egg is porous, you won’t use cleaners or water, which will soak into the ceramic and affect taste and performance. Scrape the sides with a ball of aluminum foil to remove as much of the surface staining as possible. Next, empty the ash chamber and heat the grill up to about 600 degrees, allowing it to burn for about an hour. Once it is cool, clean the ashes again, and your Big Green Egg is ready for use.

Friedmans Appliances is your source for the Big Green Egg and related accessories, as well as complete selection of home appliances in Pleasant Hill. Contact our appliance store today by calling (925) 808-2950.

Signs That It's Time to Upgrade Your Oven

Even the best ovens won’t last forever, so how do you know when it is time to upgrade yours? If you don’t pay attention to the clues that your oven is on its last legs, you run the risk of it giving out at the worst moment, such as when you’re getting ready for a dinner party or when you’re about to serve up a holiday meal. If you notice any of these signs happening with your oven, it could be time to pay a visit to a home appliance store.

The preheat time seems to be getting longer.

There is a good chance you know how about how long your oven takes to preheat, even if you’ve never actually timed it. If you find that you are going to oven to put your food in, only to find that it’s not even close to being preheated, then it is an indicator that something is wrong. As preheating times increase, it means time could be running out on the usefulness of your oven.

Your food is cooking unevenly.

This problem can be very frustrating for home cooks. When your oven cooks unevenly, you’ll notice that some parts of your food are cooked perfectly, while other parts are either not fully cooked or burned. Uneven cooking can make batch cooking, such as cookies or roasted vegetables, particularly hard to manage. When your food is not cooking evenly, it means you have hot and cold spots in your oven, instead of a consistent temperature.

Your meals are taking longer to prepare.

You may not notice that your favorite meal is taking a minute or two longer than usual to cook, but as the cooking time continues to increase, you may notice that your favorite fast weeknight meal is suddenly taking twice the time to finish. This is a sign that your oven isn’t maintaining the cooking temperature, which will only continue to get worse.

When you’re ready to upgrade your oven, choose Friedmans Appliance for a wide selection of the most reliable home appliance brands. Let us help you pick the right oven from over 80 brands of gas and electric options. Contact us at (925) 808-2950 to learn more about our full selection of home appliances in Pleasant Hill.

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