1. Find the hot and cold spots by spreading a layer of trimmed white bread slices edge to edge over the microwave floor. Set on High and watch the browning process through the glass door.
  2. To test whether a dish is microwave safe, place it in the oven next to a glass measuring cup of water; turn on High for 1 minute. If the water is warm, you know the oven is working. If the dish is cool, it’s OK to use; if it’s hot, don’t use it in the microwave.
  3. To get full cooking power, wipe out the oven after each use — especially around the door seal — using a mild detergent or baking soda solution. Soften stubborn soil with steam by boiling a cup of water in the oven; then clean with a plastic (not steel wool) scrubbing pad.
  4. To give microwaved meat an appetizing browned look, brush it first with soy sauce mixed with a little water.
  5. To get rid of lingering flood odors or a stale smell, place a thick slice of lemon on a paper towel and microwave it on High for 1 to 1½ minutes; let stand overnight.
  6. If greasy residue or food inside the oven catches fire, keep the door closed, turn the oven off, and disconnect the cord at the plug or shut off the power.
  7. If you’re worried about high electricity or gas bills, economize by preheating food in a microwave on High before completing the cooking in a regular oven.

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