Posted by: literallydelicious | March 31, 2010

Gadgets and Necessities

I love gadgets of every kind. If it’s for the office, the house, the kitchen or the garage, I want it. Or, as my grandson insists, I need it.

Some gadgets, though, I really do need, especially in the kitchen. Things I could live without but wouldn’t volunteer to give up:

* garlic peeler. I bought it at Williams Sonoma: a little yellow rubber tube. You put a clove of garlic inside, roll it between your palm and the countertop a time or two, and ta-da, the skin (usually) slips off. Since Bob can eat 2-3 heads of garlic in one meal — yep, heads — it comes in really handy.

* coffee grinder. Yeah, I could buy my Topeca coffee already ground, but it’s so much better when you grind it yourself.

* plastic cutting sheets. They’re so thin that you can practically see through them. They’re great for chopping, then you just fold the sides and pour everything into your dish or pot. Got ’em at WalMart. Love ’em.

* Reynolds Nonstick Aluminum Foil. We roast a lot of veggies, and nothing sticks to this stuff. It’s the easiest clean-up ever.

* my homemade cookbook. Three-ring binders — three of them so far — with my recipes printed on pretty paper. In a sixteen-point font. So I can read them without my glasses. And in plastic sleeves so I can clean up the inevitable spills and splashes. (The balsamic-BBQ chicken page keeps sticking to the next one. Guess I need to clean more.)

* pot scraper. Hard rubber, curved on one edge, pointed on the other. Lets you get into all the nooks and crannies to scrape out the burned-of stuff.

* juicer. We like fresh limade a lot, and this gadget lets me squeeze all those limes without too much effort.

* chopsticks. I love that I — the clumsiest person you’d ever have the misfortune to meet — can eat with two skinny little sticks.

* microplane. Yes, you can make lemon sugar without a microplane, but it’s waaay easier with.

* the food sealer. Wonderful for buying in bulk.

* pressure canner. July in Oklahoma. 90-some degrees with four burners boiling water. Enough said.

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Responses

  1. I’m the same way though sometimes I NEVER use the kitchen utensil that I thought I couldn’t live without.

    • I’m like that with dishes, Jackie. I love pretty serving dishes but probably don’t use most of them more than once every year or two. But when I see a pretty platter, some irrational little voice says, “I need that!” For what? To take up space in my already-crowded kitchen? 😉

      • Speaking of which, I just bought the coolest deviled egg carrier…and I NEVER make deviled eggs. *Sigh* I’m just hopeless.

      • But you never know when the urge to make ’em will hit, right? Better to be prepared. (That logic has bought me a whole roomful of things I rarely use.)

        I just recently gave my Frankoma deviled egg platter to my sister. I make them about three times a year but only at home, for two, so I didn’t need a platter that holds about 2 dozen. She loves deviled eggs and makes them for family dinners a lot, so hopefully she’ll get more use out of it than I did.

        And if I ever need one, I know where to borrow it. 😉

  2. I’ve got to try the non-stick aluminum foil. We roast a lot of veggies, too.
    My juicer cost about $5 at Kmart, and it’s a miracle. I’m always shocked at how well it works. One of these days I want one of those cool ones you poke the entire fruit into and it dumps out the rind on one side while it spits the juice from the other.
    I don’t have the plastic cutting sheets. Another gotta try it.
    My favs: Ice cream dippers for making uniform sized portions. (Like muffins and cookies.)
    And I love my coffee maker/grinder. The grinder is built right in and saves a lot of muss and fuss and makes delicious coffee. Hard to believe you just now discovered it.
    Remember that one person who used to always insist any coffee she ordered was “burned”? Makes you wonder, doesn’t it?

    • I love the foil. Not even my ribs, when they get really crusty and sticky-sweet, stick to it. It’s the best invention Reynolds ever made.

      I have the old-fashioned cut-glass juicer where you cut the fruit in half, then squeeze it over the post — got it at a flea market for a couple bucks, and one of the people with me was appalled that I would actually use something bought at a flea market for food. Duh, has she never heard of washing dishes???

      I have ice cream sccops, but I’ve never used them for portion control. Good idea. Sometimes I’ll put cookie dough (depending on its consistency) in a pastry bag, snip off the tip, and squirt them out that way.

      I also use a squirt drink bottle to measure out cake batter into mini-cupcake cups. No drips, no mess. Love it.

      LOL about the burned coffee!


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