Not sure what I have a bigger weakness for: kitchen gadgets or cook books.
Lucky for me, my local public library allows me to thumb through and try out recipes from new and popular cook books before pulling the trigger on a purchase. (Watch for some cook book reviews from me in future posts.) But when it comes to cooking gadgets, I have accumulated quite a few. Some I never put away. They just go from the dishwasher to the counter because I need them day after day. Others sit permanently in the back of a hard-to-reach cabinet, never to be heard from, or used, again.
I’ve put together a list of five gadgets that I’ve convinced myself I need in my kitchen for the summer.
1. Stainless Steel Herb Cutting Scissors. http://jenaluca.com/portfolio-item/herb-scissors/ ($11.95 on Amazon)
I just planted an entire 4×4 garden box full of herbs. Basil, chives, thyme, dill, cilantro, parsley, rosemary, mint and sage. I’m gonna need this bad boy. The version from Jenaluca (http://jenaluca.com/) comes with 5 blades, and a cover that doubles as a comb for cleaning.
2. Spiral Vegetable Slicer. http://iperfectkitchen.com/iperfect-kitchens-envy-spiral-slicer On sale on Amazon for $15.75, down from $49.99)
It’s iPerfect Kitchen’s current flagship product (http://iperfectkitchen.com/). Now I know what I’m going to do with all that zucchini people give me from their gardens. What I cool way to transform vegetables! Zucchini pasta, cold shaved zucchini salads…I’m already brainstorming.
3. Marinade Injector. http://www.grillpro.com/accessory.php?category=1&type=5&part=14950 ($11.56 on Amazon)
This marinade injector, made by GrillPro (http://www.grillpro.com/) is well-reviewed. Can you imagine how juicy and flavorful your meat will be after a shot from this guy? I’ve been planning to experiment with my own marinades this summer. This tool would be fun to play with.
4. Ice Cream Sandwich Pan. http://www.wilton.com/store/site/product.cfm?id=6FC6FBEA-1E0B-C910-EA3AD72F3178E431&killnav=1 ($11.99 on Wilton’s website)
I’m already envisioning a “make your own ice cream sandwich bar” at my next cook-out. The tray from Wilton, (www.wilton.com), comes with recipes and instructions. Who needs the ice cream truck?! Not me.
5. Guacamole Masher. http://amcohouseworks.com/gadgets/guacamole-masher.html ($9.99 at Bed, Bath & Beyond)
I realize that this may be a lazy purchase, but I can’t get enough guacamole during the summer (which explains all the cilantro I planted). And believe it or not, I don’t actually own a slotted spoon (the traditional tool for mashing avocados). This gadget from Amco Houseworks, (amcohouseworks.com), is sold as a “3-in-1” tool. It’ll remove the pit from the halved avocado with the nylon loop, scoop out the fruit using the side of the stainless steel base and mash the fruit with the base.
I certainly can’t stop there. Clearly I’m a sucker for tools that help me work faster, and get more creative in the kitchen. What are your go-to tools and gadgets? How about summer-specific ones?