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As the name suggests Cream of Tartar must be some sort of cream, but it is actually a powdery substance. Not only the name is different, but this powder has various uses in almost all household activities and even more.
Another distinctive quality of this powder is that it can last a lifetime if stored in a clean, dark, and dry place.
You must be thinking that this is some sort of artificially created substance, but no, it is just a byproduct of winemaking (fermentation of grape juice). All these unique qualities and uses make Cream of Tartar a Magical Powder.
What Is Cream of Tartar?
Also known as Potassium Bitartrate, Cream of Tartar is a byproduct of winemaking. But, this cream is not actually cream. Confused? Don’t be.
In the process of winemaking, during the fermentation of grape juice Potassium Bitartrate to maintain the pH of grape juice crystallizes in wine bottles and precipitates out of wine in the bottles.
It also acts as a preservative for wine.
The crude form, known as beeswing is collected and purified to produce a white, odorless, acidic powder which is known as Cream of Tartar in cooking.
This powdery acid is used for various culinary and household purposes.
Cream of Tartar mixed with Baking Soda is what gives us Baking Powder. It activates the alkaline Baking Soda.
Other than baking Cream of Tartar is used for various purposes such as cleaning, dyeing, removing rust from metals, and many more.
Uses of Cream of Tartar
1. Stain Removal
You can use this magical powder to remove stains from almost all types of clothes.
Mix 3% hydrogen peroxide (available at pharmacies) with Cream of Tartar in a dish to form a paste and apply it to the stain.
Leave it for approximately 5-10 minutes and then wash the garment as usual. You can use this paste to remove any kind of stain.
2. Bathroom Cleaner
A few drops of lemon juice mixed with Cream of Tartar and an equal amount of baking soda can work wonderfully to make your bathroom shiny and clean.
Make a bathroom cleaner using the three ingredients and apply them to the stains.
This can be used on the floor, wall tiles, washbasins, and toilets.
Apply the solution and let it sit for 30 minutes (approx.), rinse with water, and wipe with a clean cloth.
3. Clean The Metal
Make a thick paste of Cream of tartar with water and use it to clean the stainless steel, copper, and aluminum appliances.
You can clean cutlery, garden tools, burner pans and keep all of them shining using this. Apply the paste on them, let it sit, and then clean as you usually do.
The paste can also be used to clean microwave ovens, refrigerators, etc. This also makes the metals shinier. Rub with a microfibre cloth to make it look shinier.
4. Remove Rust
Make a paste of Cream of Tartar and Hydrogen Peroxide. Apply it to the rusted area and let it sit for a few hours.
Wash it off with water or baking soda solution. Wash it off with water again and wipe using a clean cloth. The rust will be gone.
Putting some oil on the earlier rusted area will prevent it from further rusting.
5. Clean Coffee Pot
Coffee stains are hard to clean and look awful. Regular usage of your coffee pot makes these stains become even tougher to clean.
Sprinkle cream of Tartar in your coffee pot add boiling water and let it sit. When the water cools down to room temperature rinse the pot.
Later, clean it with normal water and wipe it with a clean cloth. Your Coffee Pot will be clean and stainless again.
6. Whites Stay White
White color gets dirty easily and starts looking yellowish or pale after being used for some time. Before laundering, soak your white clothes in a bucket of lukewarm water and add 1 teaspoon of Cream of Tartar to it.
Keep the clothes soaked in this water for an hour or so and then wash them as you regularly do. This will keep the whites looking white and bright.
7. Inhibit Ants
Ants are creatures that keep coming into your house from unimaginable areas and are hard to get rid of. This magical powder will vanish these ants from everywhere.
Find out where they are coming from and sprinkle some Cream of Tartar there. This will prevent ants from coming again.
8. Make DIY Bath Bombs
Make your own bath bombs.
Take Baking Soda and Cream of Tartar in a 2:1 ratio. Mix them well in a bowl and add a few drops of essential oil to it.
Add color and dried flowers to it and make small balls out of this mixture. And you are all set to have a relaxing bath with your favorite fragrances.
Learn to make these here.
9. Remove Scratches On Kitchenware
Kitchenware usually gets scratches from cutlery and looks bad. Make a paste of Cream of Tartar in water and apply it to the dishes.
Scrub it with your hands or using a sponge and then clean them off with water. Rinse them with a clean cloth. This is an easy and not so expensive way of removing scratches from kitchenware.
10. Make Play Dough
To make play dough you will require the following ingredients:
- ½ cup of salt
- 1 cup plain flour
- 2 tablespoon Cream of Tartar
- 1 cup of water
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 3 drops liquid food coloring
Mix all the ingredients and stir them until the dough is easily bendable. Let it cool down and put its seal packed in a plastic bag. Since this dough is edible you do not need to worry if by chance your child swallows it.
Risks & Warnings:
- Inspect your bottle of Cream of Tartar before using it. Though, it stays fresh for a very long time if kept in a dry and dark place. But, if you see any clumps or changes in color then it is not good to be used.
- The yielding ratio of Cream of Tartar is low making it expensive.
- Since Cream of Tartar is a chemical it irritates the eyes. Keep your eyes safe while using it and flush your eyes immediately with water if it gets in them.
- Cream of Tartar if ingested or inhaled in large amounts can cause dizziness, stomach cramps, difficulty in breathing, or nausea. Consult a doctor if something like this happens.
- If you are suffering from a kidney problem avoid Cream of Tartar.