simple is beautiful

Ten Favorite Kitchen Gadgets

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

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?


8 comments:

  1. I love a kitchen gadget post, and enjoy your blog! Would you share your technique for using the Bialetti moka pot? I own two but never use them because I think they make terrible, burnt tasting espresso. I spend a lot of $ on beans, so that is disappointing. They are very popular tools - I'm sure there is a way (which has escaped me) to make great espresso in them! PS - the link for the egg cooker takes you to the amazon page for the cheese grater.

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    1. I have never used the Italian pot so I asked my husband his secret. He gave me this link that he thought would be helpful. He says that it is important not to make not overfill the canister with coffee. Water needs to flow through evenly preventing the bitter taste that you might be experiencing. Also, I'm not sure what type of coffee you are using, but that could make a big difference too. Hope this helps. http://whatscookingamerica.net/Beverage/MokaEspressoPot.htm

      Thank you for the microegg tip, by the way!

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  2. Great list of kitchen gadgets! My husband and I both love to cook. That microwave bacon tray would come in handy. I need to pick that up. I do love my BLTs every so often. One of my favorite gadgets is my whisk. I have two, a wire one and a silicone one and I use them all of the time.

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    1. Thank you! We love our whisks too Allison! We have a small one that is great for whisking small things like a single egg.

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  3. thanks so much for these recommendations--I just put 2 in my Amazon cart (egg cooker and onion chopper--I've been using an ancient Pampered Chef chopper that's seen better days)...

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    1. You will love the egg cooker & Mr. swears by the onion chopper. He has even used it on potatoes to make hash browns. We used to have the Pampered Chef chopper years ago, but I wore it out :).

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  4. I couldn't live without my microplane. I use it more than anything else in the kitchen. It's the only way to "mince" garlic!

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