Sunday, February 13, 2011

Kitchen gadget love

My fellow food blogger Tricia over at Jonski Blogski proposed that we write about the kitchen gadgets during the month of February.   Given that tomorrow is Valentine's Day, I thought I'd use the occasion to blog about my love affairs with kitchen gadgets.   I have relationships with many gadgets at the same time - I "get around", if you know what I mean.   The thing is, I have trouble picking just one to love....and guess you could say that I am "easy" when it comes to buying gadgets.   I am somewhat of a kitchen gadget "playa" as the gangsters might say.   You know my type - I'll go for just about anything once, but most of the time I break up with a gadget the next morning, and then I don't see them again.   I try to let them down easy as I place them in the kitchen drawer for the seldom used implements (or for the really ugly ones, they go straight to the garage sale box in the storage room downstairs).   I stare at them tenderly and tell them..."It's not you, it's me....I love you but I am not in love with you".  Or sometimes I look to song lyrics for some words to help me break it to them.    How about a little REO Speedwagon?

I just love the hair in this video - the funny thing is that in the 80's, I wanted my hair to look just like their hair.   I was getting perms every couple months and had a hair pick.  Not being a fan of REO, I didn't realize that their lead singer played the guitar.   I remembered him as a piano player.   Evidently, he's pretty talented!   But back to kitchen gadgets.... let's just say I've "had a few".   Here are my top gadgets:

Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer

I hooked up with one at my bridal shower, can you believe it?   Almost 20 years later, there's not a week that goes by that I don't spend some time with him - wink wink, nudge nudge.    He just stands there right on my counter top, waiting until I need him.   And I never get bored with him because he's got plenty of attachments to keep me satisfied.  

Citrus Reamer

This fellow is relatively a newcomer to my kitchen - I found him on the clearance rack with some other kitchen gadgets that were passed over by other cooks.   He looked so sad and forlorn I felt sorry for him, and I brought him home for only a dollar.   I figured I could send him right to the garage sale box if things didn't work out.    However,  I find myself turning to him at least once a week and he is always ready for me to quickly juice a lemon or lime for a recipe without getting the citrus juicer attachment out for the Kitchen Aid.   (shhhh...don't tell KA about this, he'll be jealous).  The best thing about him is that after I have used him, I just rinse him off and throw him back in the drawer.   No one needs to know....

Zyliss Food Chopper

I guess you could say I have a thing for the Swiss...because I have many Zyliss gadgets in my kitchen.   I've got a Zyliss salad spinner, a cheese grater, my aforementioned citrus reamer, etc.   I know some women go for tall dark and handsome Italians, I guess my type is the Swiss.   If I have lots of garlic to chop, or nuts, or cilantro,  I go for the chopper instead of doing it by hand.   It's much quicker.   However, note that when it comes to washing, the Zyliss Food Chopper is a little "high maintenance".  I am onto my 3rd one now because the tend to distort if placed in the bottom rack of the dishwasher.  So, I have to wash him by hand just to be careful.  And these guys aren't cheap either, but still I will reach into my wallet and buy one every time.   He's well worth the money.

Many women rely on battery powered appliances to get their needs met - I am not ashamed to say I am one of them.  Ever since I have found how good things can be with my electric pepper mill, I will never go back to a manual one.   The first one I found was at a garage sale for $2 - it was still in it's gift box from some long ago celebration, and it's owner wasn't even sure how it worked, so I gave it a shot.   LOVED IT!  It's quick and easy and I don't get tired grinding enough fresh pepper for a recipes that call for lots of it.   The first one got used so much I burnt it out.    I have this Trudeau one that is only about $50 (some of these can cost a lot more) and it is working out even better.  Instead of pushing a button to turn it on, all a girl has to do is turn it upside down like a pepper shaker.    And the grind on this one is adjustable - from coarse to very fine.   Now, if there is such a thing as an electric nutmeg grinder....I may have to take that one for a spin. 

So, for now, these guys are what I really go for in the kitchen.   Someday soon, I will write about the gadgets I had to dump.   But for now, happy Valentines Day, and treat yourself to a kitchen gadget to celebrate.


Maria said...

I concur....I concur!! I love the pepper mill too. It has become my favorite thing to give as a gift.

btw - I am a first time visitor to your blog....very entertaining and I love your music selection.

CallieK said...

Hee! REO Speedwagon- you really area Detroit girl aren't you? You and I were probably listening to Art Penthallow on WRIF at the same time- remember the 'rock and roll overtone' so you tanned evenly? Those were the days...

Vivienne said...

Your influence caused me to dig my mother's old KitchenAid mixer out and give it a second look. I don't use it much as a mixer and it is still in a cabinet, not on the countertop, which is inhibitory.

But what I've really been exploring is the attachments. With your example, I got the food chopping/grinding attachment set and used the screen attachment to de-seed my tomatoes last fall - much, much better than that food mill I used to use. Thanks for the example!

Now if I can just get around to trying pasta...

TeacherPatti said...

You're dirty :)

Jessica said...

I do love my stand mixer, but we're still pretty new in our relationship.

I'm doing my kitchen gadget post later this week for MLFB :)


Cynthia said...

@Maria thank you for the kind thoughts....I am trying to incorporate more music into my blog this year because music is a lifelong love of mine.

@CallieK I forgot about the Rock and Roll Over Tone until just now. Arthur P has long retired - it's been a while since he has "come into my ray-didio".

@Vivienne It's time for you to get the meat grinder attachment. You will love it.

@Patti Coming from you, that's a great compliment, my friend! Thanks for the birthday card and Valentine!

Mrs. G said...

I wrote this last summer, the original post is here:

Ode On A Potato Masher

Lovely potato masher, though art sweet and fair
Thy graceful handle with paint nicked and chipped
Thou makest my potatoes as light as air
And deliverest turnips all buttered and whipped
Praise the humble tool
Thou art my kitchen jewel

Electric beaters, family feeders, all sleek and new
Mash they none better, yea but faster
Rendered thee obsolete, no longer cool
But in my humble kitchen thou art master
A salute to vintage tools, all tried and true
“Made in China” doth pale in comparison to you

Mothers Day Flowers Delivery said...

Kitchen aid is at the top of my list!

Nicole Pearce said...

I love my citrus reamer too! Sometimes the simplest gadgets are the best. Although...I couldn't live without my Kitchen Aid either.

Joan Lambert Bailey said...

Oh, I'm jealous of that mixer! I'm debating a food processor to take back to Japan, but have been warned that the motor might be an issue given the slightly different voltage there. I'd like an upgrade for making pesto as well as sauerkraut. Any advice on what to look for in a food processor? Or do you use your beloved mixer and call it a day? :)

Charenn29 said...

i love citrus and i am badly needing that citrus reamer

Carole said...

My current favourite kitchen gadget is a jar key