Favorite Things
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These are a few of my favorite things: Kitchen Gadgets

I just love Julie Andrews.  I wanted to be her in the Sound of Music when I was younger…I suppose part of me still does now.

*I hope you got the Sound of Music reference in the post title or the next diversion won’t correlate*

When my sister and I were little, a wonderful woman named Jackie would come and care for us occasionally if my parents were out of town. Jackie also watched us during the day for a week when I had chicken pox and my parents had to work.  She had this glorious four poster bed with a big, fluffy white down comforter and the Disney channel–which was a big deal in 1992 (the Disney channel, not a down comforter).  I was allowed to lay in her enormous bed and eat chocolate pudding when I was sick (remember I said white comforter…and I was 6). She was the best.

Whenever she looked after us, we watched all sorts of musicals by Rogers and Hammerstein.  Carousel and The King & I were some of our favorites but none more so than The Sound of Music.  My sister and I knew all the words to those songs–including My Favorite Things.

So what is this post really about?  Not chocolate pudding and white comforters.

I’m obsessed with kitchen gadgetry and tools.  Anything to make a task easier.  One of the reasons I love cooking shows and watching people prepare food so much is getting to observe what types of tools they use.

Here are a few of my favorite things–gadgets if you will–in the kitchen.  These are items I use the most–hands down.  Some may seem quite obvious and standard but my life wouldn’t be the same without them.

Wusthof Super Slicer

I love this knife!  I use it for everything–carving meat, slicing fresh bread without squishing the loaf, and it
does wonders on tackling large watermelons.

 
 

I have yet to use this rack for it’s designated purpose.  Don’t get me wrong–I would kill for a double oven when cooking for parties but only have one to speak of now.  This rack will absolutely help with space in the oven–I just haven’t needed it for that purpose as of yet.  As I went to put the box away (and found myself cramming it into another over crowded cabinet) I had a light bulb moment. While it’s a highly beneficial item, it’s not like I was going to be using it everyday.  Why not use it to help with storage in said over crowded cabinet?!?  Sometimes I open the cabinet just to peek at the organization and relish in the neat stack of bakeware that no longer tumbles onto my feet.  I’m not exaggerating here.

 
 

Growing up my mom had measuring cups and spoons that were linked by a big key ring and neatly organized–until you actually had to use one. Then you were faced with the dilemma of removing that one off the key ring or washing the whole set.  I’ve seen individual cups and spoons before but what makes these so magical (yes, magical) is the strong magnet in the handle.  They all stack and stay together!  No tumbling around the kitchen drawer and searching for that darn 1/4 tsp!

Bialetti Pizza Chopper

 
I’m not quite sure if it was the gleaming glint of the metal or the obnoxious size of the blade but my then boyfriend (now husband) saw this from across the store.  At first I protested at the size and storing such a large item but I have to say this chopper is downright cool.  At the time we were living separately so we each bought one.  When I moved in, I decided to give the extra pizza chopper to our friend.  I thought my husband was going to cry.  While it is a neat tool, we had no business with two.  My husband still disagrees with me.  C’est la vie. If we are ever in a “double-fisted-pizza-cutting-duel” I will concede and tell him he was right–we really do need two pizza choppers.
It’s awesome on any pizza–deep dish to thin crust. I’ve even used it to uniformly cut thicker bars and brownies once removed from the pan.  I suppose it would also be an intimidating self defense item if someone were to come at you while you’re trying to enjoy your slice of pepperoni heaven.
 
 
 
I got this little cup as part of a gift basket from my mother in law.  I know you’re wondering what you would use this for and why you wouldn’t just use a measuring spoon or another larger liquid.  I use it ALL the time!  
 
It’s great for when you are making a sauce or marinade where you’re adding in a few tablespoons of this and that.  Notice how the maximum measure (4 tbsp) is still lower in the cup to prevent spilling?  Do you tend to do what I do with measuring spoons? Pour that vinegar or extract right out of the bottle near the pantry and then walk the invisible tight rope back to the bowl, hoping you don’t spill?  Yeah…been there done that.
 
It’s also great for honey–just spray a quick shot of cooking spray in the cup and it’s much easier to measure a few tablespoons of honey for a recipe rather than an individual measuring spoon.  This little cup is so much easier to clean as well.
 
 
Ikea Mezzaluna and Chopping Board *only favorite no longer available*
 
 
I really don’t mean to taunt you with this since it appears that Ikea no longer makes this great mezzaluna.  Instead, look at this as all the reasons why you should get any mezzaluna!  I love this little sharp rocker and board so much.  It’s great for chopping/mincing things that can be somewhat more difficult or time consuming with a standard knife.  It’s almost effortless since you just rock the blades back and forth while turning in different angles. Here I’ve used it on chocolate chips for the banana chocolate chip pancakes I was making but it’s also great for mincing garlic and herbs.
 
 
 So if I had to move to a deserted island, (assuming that deserted island had a fully functional kitchen and wide range of ingredients) those are the 6 gadgets that would be coming with me.

What are your favorite tools and gadgets in the kitchen?  I’d love to hear!

*Note–I was not asked/paid to endorse any of these items.  I’m recommending based on my own opinion and experience*

 

Filed under: Favorite Things

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Writer of recipes. Storyteller with a food twist. Sarcasm/humor served on the side.

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