Confessions of a gadget junkie
The other day I was given a bean slicer by a kind friend who couldn’t believe I still sliced my runner beans by hand. I bought some and eagerly set to work only to find that most of the beans were too big to fit into it. Which left me with a gadget that will slice thin beans which don’t really need slicing anyway.
It’s not the only gadget I’ve got that doesn’t earn its keep. There’s an egg separator, a hard-boiled egg slicer and a musical egg-timer you pop in the boiling water which plays 'Killing me softly' when the eggs are soft-boiled. My husband inexplicably loves that.
Gadget proof? Would your slow cooker come out of the cupboard for this beef brisket ?
I have a gravy de-greaser and a cherry and olive stoner that I use once a year, if that. A lemon zester (what’s wrong with the small holes on the grater?) and a gadget for stamping out ravioli that I bought on an Italian trip when I went mad in a local hardware store. And this I haven’t ever used - along with a gnocchi roller.
At least they don’t take up much room. I’m almost embarrassed to tell you about the larger gadgets that clutter my cupboards and unit tops.
The breadmaker I haven’t used for five years. The juicer I used every day until I got fed up with carrot juice - and with cleaning the filter. The ice cream maker whose bowl I always forget to freeze so I end up using a plastic box. Two, yes, two pressure cookers neither of which I use but which thrifty friends tell me will slash my fuel bills if I can overcome my terror of them.
The slow cooker which does, yes, do a very good poached chicken but to be honest I prefer them roasted. And even my flashy and very beautiful mixer rarely gets a workout. I’m more likely to use the rather battered food processor I bought for a song at Woolies. Or my 15 year old hand-held electric beaters.
Maybe I’m in a minority because some companies seem to base whole businesses on selling gadgets to the gadget-obsessed. Avocado slicers, pasta timers, egg toppers (for taking the tops of your eggs, believe it or not), hot and cold mousse/sauce dispensers and giant cupcake pans (er, isn’t that called a cake tin?) Obviously I haven’t even scratched the surface of kitchen gadgetry.
Sometimes I think I should get rid of the lot and start again, seeing how long it took me to really, really miss a machine or a gadget and how difficult it was to do the task without it.
So what about you? Which kitchen gadgets do you find indispensable and which could you live without?