Tag Archives: kitchen gadgets

Keeping the Yummy in Somethin’ Yummy

It’s a gadget day!  Today I have a collection of things that make my life in the kitchen way better.  Cooking can be a lot of fun when you have ingredients at the ready, fresh-fresh veggies and brown sugar that hasn’t turned into a brown sugar brick when you weren’t looking!

Let’s start with tiny little bowls, the smallest of which will hold about 2 tablespoons of a spice.  The bowls are often referred to as Mise en Place bowls.  The term means having all your ingredients for whatever you’re making prepped and at the ready.  If you’re a Food Network star, you have a sous chef who will set your mise en place for you so you can carry on with clever banter as you cook.  If you’re like me, you set your own mise en place.  I’m an easily distracted sort of person, so having all my spices and such ready ahead of time eliminates the question of how many tablespoons I’ve just put into my dish….

I found the teeny tiny ones at Bed, Bath and Beyond, the bigger ones with lids at Target.  You really could use any small containers, like shot glasses or those cute little mustard bowls that sometimes come with Asian tableware.  Here’s a spice mise en place from the Jambalaya post.

My newest yummy loves are the 3BBags reusable veggie bags.  They’re washable, reuseable, and have kept the veggies in my crisper way fresher than plastic bags could ever dream of!  I came across them at Natural Grocers in the produce department.  Being a person who is trying to reduce plastic use, I thought I’d give them a try.  I LOVE them!  Yeah, they cost money, where plastic is provided by the grocery for free; but to me the veggies staying fresher (yummier) longer and without some sort of plastic off-gassing is worth it.  How often have you bought veggies and ended up tossing them out because they spoil or dry out before you get to them?  That’s tossing money away.  I think the cost was around $4 or $5– you get 2 small and 1 large bag.  In the picture, veggies are in the small bags:

And now the cutest solution ever to the brown sugar brick problem.  I hate it when I need brown sugar for the recipe and it has turned itself into a brick.  There are all sorts of recommendations on web sites to use pieces of bread or apple slices, but bread can crumble and apple slices get brown and icky.  This cute little clay sugar bear has been keeping my brown sugar all nice and soft and is always happy to see me.

See?  How cute is that?!  And the sugar in the bag stays nice and soft.  Yummy can describe flavorful foods, but can also be something beautiful or something that really saves the day in the kitchen.  These three gadgets are definitely YUMMY!


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Go-Go-Go-To Gadgets!

Every cook has a favorite pan, a favorite set of measuring cups and other gadgets.  So, I thought I’d feature some of my favs today.  When I wrote the title for this post, this music popped into my head: have a listen for kicks and grins, while you’re reading about  Go-Go-Go-To Gadget number one.

If you follow this blog, you’ll recognize this one from the Mistral’s Chicken recipe.

The Garlic Peeling Tube!  I love this if I’m peeling more than a couple of cloves.  Break cloves from the head of garlic.  Place individual cloves one at a time into the tube.  Press down on a hard surface and roll back and forth–listen for the crackle.  Tip your perfectly peeled clove out on the counter!  Static build up will make some of the peel pieces stick to the inside and outside, but a quick dip under the faucet will rinse them right out.

Go-Go-Go-To Gadget number 2:  The Misto:

This groovy gadget eliminates cooking sprays and their throat-choking propellants, while allowing you to control the quality of the oil in the spray.  The top unscrews to let you add whichever oil you’d like to place inside–I have olive oil in mine.  The lid is a pump–pumping air inside that will propel the oil in a mist when you spray.  Have a look at the video that is part of the Misto link for a better explanation.

Finally, the way to have that lovely, frothy latte.  (With foam strong enough to support caramel or chocolate or butterscotch….yum!)

Go-Go-Go-To Gadget number three is the Primo Latte!  This tiny battery-powered immersion blender is just the thing for your inner barista!  Heat the milk of your choice (I like almond milk) into your favorite coffee cup in the microwave until it starts to steam.  Remove from the microwave and immerse the whisk end of the Primo Latte into the milk, push the button and whip until the froth is the consistancy you like.  Then add flavor or flavored creamer if you want, then hot coffee, then top with your favorite syrup or cinnamon or other sprinkles!

Run the whisk end of the Primo Latte under water to rinse, push the button to spin the water off, and place it in its stand until next time.  Mmmmmm!  Doesn’t that frou-frou coffee look yummy?  (It was!)

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