The following tips are from the University of Washington Burn Center at Harborview Medical Center and from Seattle Times home economist Judy Borreson Groom:
* To test whether a container is safe for microwave use, pour one cup water into a glass measuring cup and place in the microwave oven next to the empty container to be tested. Microwave at 100 percent power for one to two minutes. If the container is warm or hot, do not use it for microwave cooking.
* Use a potholder to remove any container from the microwave.
* Don't pop popcorn in a brown paper bag. Buy a commercial brand of microwave popcorn or use a popcorn popper designed for microwave ovens.