In the words of the great sage Ariel (yes, of The Little Mermaid fame):
“I’ve got gadgets and gizmos a plenty
I’ve got whozits and whatzits galore
You want thingamabobs? I’ve got twenty!
But who cares? No big deal,
I want more…….”
Kitchen gadgets, that is.
I’ve been on a bit of a gadget binge lately. My husband bought me a pasta roller a couple of Christmas’ ago. I had put it on my list at the last minute. One of those, “You know, I’ve always wanted one but it seems like such a seldom-used gadget type of thing.” I am ashamed to admit that it sat in the box in the cupboard for a year after receipt. I think it was primarily a time thing. That block that I think many of us face in the kitchen: “It takes too much time!” I finally pulled it out a few months ago. I was completely taken by the velvety softness of the dough that rolled out of the press…the satisfying turn of the crank…I was sold. That being said, I still haven’t made a ton of pasta. Though I did recently buy a ravioli mold and two ravioli stamps. There is pasta on the horizon.
I also have a streak of cheap within me. A reluctance to spend money on kitchen gidgety gadgets with such specific purpose that they’re only used a couple of times a year. Don’t get me wrong, I still have a spritz cookie press and a food mill and an apple corer/peeler and a few fancy attachments for the Kitchen Aid mixer. Oh, and I did recently purchase a Vinturi wine aerator (attach amazon link), which is a little piece of heaven on earth. I indulge in some areas, cheap out in others. For instance, my “microplane.” I’ve had this “microplane” in my kitchen drawer for years.
It was not touted as a “microplane,” but I do seem to recall promises on the package about zesting. It does not work. It has never worked. It was inexpensive. So, when I need zest I use my trusty vegetable peeler. And then a knife to finely chop the results. I know. NOT THE SAME!!! And, it’s not unreasonable to ask, “Why do you still have the non-functioning microplane in your drawer?” Because I occasionally try it to see if it’s somehow improved with age. Or to see if, maybe all of those times I tried it before, it was simply user error. Sigh. Word to the wise: unlike good wine, faulty microplanes do not improve with age.
A few months ago a friend of mine was having a Pampered Chef party. I didn’t attend the party itself, but purchased a couple of small items (read: too cheap to buy large items). I wanted that little rubber sleeve for rubbing the peel off garlic.
I also indulged in a microplane.
It arrived shortly before Christmas and I quickly had an opportunity to try it out on a cookie batter that called for orange zest. I grabbed the microplane. I was amazed. I was delighted. I was…aghast that I had failed, until then, to put out the money for a good microplane.
I’ll have you know that I’ve since purchased a turkey baster. Truly honestly I did not have a turkey baster. It seemed unnecessary to purchase something that I don’t use but a couple of times a year. But who’s cursing when she’s trying to baste the turkey with a large spoon? I bought a hand mixer, too. For those small jobs that don’t require pulling out the big Kitchen Aid. Currently on the list: mandolin, crepe pan and a kitchen torch. Cheap girl is screaming, “Really?! How often are you going to use that crap!” The chef within simply smiles a happy little smile and dreams of cream brulee.
I might need a bigger kitchen.
What’s your favorite gadget? (I made need to add it to my list)