If you've spent time in the kitchen, you may have noticed that not all kitchen gadgets are what they claim to be. Some gadgets make life easier and some do not. Over the years, Mr. and I have done some experimenting of our own. We (and our sons) have decided there are some kitchen items that we are quite attached to.
1 - The Kitchen Aid mixer. I've had my mixer for 18 or so years and even though I don't use it daily, I cannot imagine baking without it. It has the attachments that allow me to pour ingredients into the bowl while it is mixing. I can leave it running while I tend to other things. Mr. uses it to knead his bread. We both like seeing it on the kitchen counter when not in use. It's a winner in our book.
2 - The lemon zester. Many of our favorite dishes call for fresh lemon zest. There is no comparison between fresh lemon zest and dried (trust me). This zester makes it so easy!
3 - Stovetop espresso maker - We discovered this little gadget during our trip to Italy last spring. All of the houses we stayed in had these little coffee pots. After a couple of tries Mr. figured out the formula for making an amazing cup of coffee with this pot! Added bonus: we can use it during a power outage with a gas stove and I dare say that it is better than the French press.
4 - Microwave bacon tray - On the weekends we cook bacon on a baking sheet with parchment paper in the oven. But for a quick weekday morning breakfast or for a recipe that calls for a slice or two of bacon, this tray comes in handy. The bacon cooks easily and the grease drains off leaving a crispy slice each time.
5 - Cuisinart food chopper - We've had our food chopper so long that I'm honestly surprised it hasn't died. We use it to chop nuts, bread crumbs, vegetables, crackers, pretzels, etc. I've also used it to make dressings and sauces.
6 - Onion chopper - While I'm content to pour a glass of wine and slowly and methodically chop an onion, Mr. likes to get right to it with his onion chopper. He loves it! Caution: it can be very loud if you aren't ready for the chop.
7 - Cheese grater - Our trip to Italy taught us many things. One of the most memorable is that fresh ingredients are ALWAYS better. Whenever we have pasta or dishes that require a bit of cheese, we always use this grater. It is easily cleaned in the dish washer and well worth the effort.
8 - Micoregg cooker - I wasn't sure what to make of this thing when we received it one year for Christmas, but our entire family loves it! All you do is crack an egg into it. Close it up and cook it in the microwave for about 40 seconds (cooking time may vary). We then enjoy the egg on an English muffin with a slice of ham, bacon, or cheese.
9 - Bagel Slicer - If your family goes through as many bagels as ours, a bagel slicer is a must.
10 - Coffee Grinder - Freshly ground coffee beans make all the difference when it comes to a good cup of joe. We grind our beans every morning and purchase coffee beans from Costco (the Kirkland brand roasted by Starbucks, so good!).
Now it's your turn. Do you have a favorite kitchen gadget or two?