March Monthly Mouthful
Is there anything greater than a kitchen gadget? A uniquely crafted tool designed specifically for the most detailed of cooking tasks that you never knew you needed until you couldn’t live without it. From melon ballers to immersion blenders, choppers to egg slicers, kitchen gadgets have firmly established themselves in our kitchens.
This month, we asked our favorite food bloggers:
What is your favorite kitchen gadget and what is your favorite way to use it?
Read all the responses below to see what everyone said. And share your favorite in the comments!
Lydia from The Perfect Pantry
My three-headed lava rock molcajete (mortar), purchased in the Mercado Libertad in Guadalajara, Mexico. I’ve never seen one like it, except in a museum — it has the heads of a sheep, pig and goat. There was only one in the shop among the hundreds of single-headed mortars, and I knew instantly that I had to buy it. The molcajete makes the best guacamole and salsa fresca in the world, and it’s useful for grinding rice and grains, too.
Melissa from Alosha’s Kitchen
OK, this is a totally boring answer (I also don’t have many gadgets), but I have to say my digital thermometer. Since it’s only been a little over two years since I began cooking in earnest, it has been an enormous help with new meats/dishes. I have gotten better about knowing when things are done without using it, but even so, I can’t say I would have done as well without it this past year or so.
I really need a microplane though. I think that would be terribly handy and I need to go get one soon!
Veronica from Veronica’s Test Kitchen
My favorite kitchen gadget is my infrared thermometer. I don’t know how I ever survived without it. I use it to measure the temperature of everything from browned butter, sugar syrup and melted chocolate. I also use it to test temperature of egg whites, even the oven! And it is extremely sanitary because it never touches the food.
Stef from Cupcake Project
I love my side swipe spatula mixer blade. As if using the Kitchen Aid doesn’t make baking easy enough, this amazing device makes it so I don’t even have to scrape the sides of the bowl. I never use the paddle that came with the Kitchen Aid anymore. The side swipe gets used ever time I make cupcakes, which is all the time!
Krysta from Evil Chef Mom
Okay, my favorite kitchen gadget isn’t really a kitchen gadget but it was given to me as a gift to use in my kitchen. I use it all the time, so it has to count, right? I would have to say my favorite gadget is the iHome audio system for my iPod . I never had music in my kitchen before and I didn’t realize what a luxury it is to have music especially when I’m cleaning up.
Sara from The Kitchen Pantry
My favourite kitchen gadget, if I really HAVE TO chose one, is my Kenwood chef, the best stand mixer ever! Very powerful, can knead up to 1 kg of flour or beat up to 10 egg whites! I can’t live without it because… Well I simply cannot! If I think about pizza, bread, shortcrust pastry, home made pasta, etc. the fist thing that comes to my mind is to take it out! To make french brioche you need to knead for at least 30 minutes by hand. With it, you just put it on then you can do many other stuff, like fill in the dish washer, do a phone call, read, check the mail…
My second love is the lemon zester: I just love its simplicity!!! :)
Michelle from Greedy Gourmet
My favourite kitchen gadget is my overused hand blender. Especially during the winter months I can’t resist the silky texture of pureed soup.
Barbara from Tigers & Strawberries
My favorite kitchen gadget, if we are talking about non-electrical items would be a zester or microplane grater.
I use citrus zest of all kinds in my food, both as a flavor component and a garnish, so that is why I love both gadgets. The microplane makes tiny shreds of zest, leaving behind every bit of bitter pith, that make a perfect seasoning for various recipes, while the zester makes long, curling strips of zest that make an amazing garnish for entrees, appetizers and desserts.
The perfect tool!
Jessie from Cakespy
You know what…it’s got to be my scone pan from Williams-Sonoma. Who would have thought a scone pan with triangular cutouts would be so versatile, but I LOVE this thing! I use it to make mini cakes, bite size brownies and fancy chocolate chip cookies. I adore it!
Amy from Eggs on Sunday
Wow, that is a really tough question! It’s between my immersion (stick) blender and my microplane grater…I suppose the immersion blender wins out — mostly for the dirty dishes it saves me from cleaning. :) I love making quick work of pureeing soups or smoothies with it, no transferring of messy liquids to and from my food processor. Whoever invented it was genius!
Johanna from The Passionate Cook
Ha! That’s the easiest question ever.
My Thermomix. I love it so much I even take it on holidays (if I am going self-catering, that is, even I am unlikely to knead my sourdough in my hotel room, then sneak into the hotel kitchen to secretly bake my own bread in the middle of the night).
I use it for everything (kneading, chopping, grinding, chocolate tempering, steaming… the list goes on), but I get the most satisfaction out of mayonnaise (in 2 minutes flat and it NEVER breaks) and sauce hollandaise which I have never been able to make the conventional way! 6 minutes in the thermomix is all it takes, forget a double broiler or endless whisking. And speaking of whisking: making béchamel and choux pastry are another two high points in my life… anything that used to take forever or never worked out – my thermomix is the answer.
If I could knit, I’d probably make a blanket for it – that’s how much I love it!
Anne-Marie Nichols from This Mama Cooks! On a Diet
My favorite kitchen gadget comes from Pampered Chef. I have a friend who sells it, and I swear I must owe every gadget they make. But out of all of them, my favorite is the coffee scoop clip. For $5 I got two tools in one – a spring loaded clip that keeps my bag of coffee beans secure and two measuring spoons (1 tbsp. or 1 tsp.) to measure out coffee. I don’t bother using the measuring spoon that came with our coffee pot. Instead I just use this. And since I use it as a clip, I don’t have to go searching in a drawer for it every time I make coffee. (You can find the coffee scoop on the Pampered Chef website here.)
Ruth from Once Upon a Feast
What a hard question! I’m attached to so many of my kitchen toys.
I use my Pampered Chef chopper for chopping nuts; my KitchenAid coffee grinder for …grinding fresh coffee every day and making fresh, fantastic spice blends; my microplane almost daily for zesting lemons, mincing ginger & grating chocolate and cheese (although never together).
But the gadget I couldn’t live without is my trusty old garlic press because I can’t remember a day it wasn’t used. In fact, when I was staying at my daughter’s and all my kitchen toys were in storage…I made sure I brought my garlic press!
Sher from What Did You Eat?
Until recently, my favorite kitchen gadget was my potato ricer. However, I’m madly in love with the milk frother I received at Christmas. It works beautifully, and I try to find any excuse to use it. I even froth my cat’s milk.
Thanks to all who participated in this Monthly Mouthful and for continuing to indulge our crazy questions! If you were not contacted for this month’s Monthly Mouthful and would like to be included in future Monthly Mouthfuls, please e-mail us at chewonthatblog [at] gmail [dot] com!