Category Archives: kitchen

For Christmas: The King of Kitchen Gadgets?

Yesterday I saw a demo of a blender called Blendtec

Image result for blendtec

This machine is a beast. It made amazing peanut butter and then soup in just a few minutes. And it goes full bore on the electronics. As you can see from the above model, they have a cool cover that reduces the sound nicely.

You will need to call your investment banker before taking it home. But for you billionaires out there, this is worth a look.

Haven’t heard of Blendtec? They are doing a viral marketing campaign with a video series called “Will it blend?” Here is one of the videos. Impressive!

An Update on My Personal Ultimate Digital Recipe Book

I love this project!

It started a while back when i realized that my weekly dining regime was  a bit … shall we say … ad hoc. I was falling into routines without thinking whether those routines could be improved. Sometimes this worked out fine. Others, it fell flat.

So how to do better? No! No! No! How to have fun doing better?

That led me to consider that digital technology should be able to help out. Indeed, it does in some ways. One can find all sorts of recipes and food preparation platforms on the web. I look at these and post on them every day. The problem is that they are not MY platforms. They are platforms that OTHER PEOPLE assembled and assemble. That is what THEY think you should eat and drink. Granted that these folks usually are more expert at doing stuff than I am. But relying on their expertise does not grow my own expertise! Nicht gut! I want to upgrade what I THINK I should eat and drink. And I want to upgrade how well I can make this stuff. So the question was and is how to translate the best of the web into the best of MY OWN thinking.

The answer is very, very simple and does not cost you anything, as long as you have a computing device and web access. You just need to master how to use WordPress. You can use WordPress for free for this. It is really easy to master.

On my WordPress private “Home” blog site, I started assembling a page with items that I like to make – for myself and for company. This evolved into several pages that one can find within a single page menu that I call “Eating at Home”

  • appetizers
  • cocktails
  • dinners – main
  • dinners – side
  • dinners – dessert
  • after dinner drinking

Now I now spend a few minutes each day (over my morning java) looking at one or the other of these pages to see if I can upgrade them in any way. That includes thinking back over what I ate last night and as appropriate, adding a note about what could have been done better. I add my own notes in a post that I link to one of the pages, and I add more links.

This is really, really easy. And I find it to be a nice distraction to kickstart the morning wake up regime. To assemble your page, all you need to do is create links to recipe pages on your personal menu page. What could be easier?

So today, i was thinking about after dinner drinks. My fav is grand marinier

Image result for grand marnier

As usual with these things, there is a sentimental reason. One of my first head over heals infatuations (a lovely lass indeed) loved grand marinier. Ever since, I have too.

But as nice as Grand Marinier is, is it the only orange liqueur that merits consideration? Nyet!

Here is a selection – yes, the selection that I pasted into my after dinner drinks page.

Go for it … that is unless your personal chef will do this for you! And even then, how do you know that he or she will not find a better place of employment? Have you thought of that?

One last point — when you travel, you hopefully will bump into stuff that you like to eat or drink. What usually happens is that we forget about most of that great stuff. Ooops! If you have an eating and drinking page, you have a place to input names and recollections as blog posts that you can link to your eating page. That way you can link your great travel experiences with your learning how to eat better and entertain better experiences at home. Brilliant!

So, when is the next flight to Paris?

My Digital Kitchen: How to Shop for Ingredients from a Recipe

In the bad old days, this was a pain in the butt. I had to take my cookbook, peruse the kitchen and pantry to see what I had on hand, and write down what I needed to buy.

These days, things are a lot simpler. I no longer use written recipes that much. Instead, I go online and copy/paste the recipe that I want to use into an email. I then highlight in bold what I need, and send that email to my gmail account. Then in the store, I pull out my phone and woila.

Continue reading My Digital Kitchen: How to Shop for Ingredients from a Recipe

Craving Some Air Fried Roasted Garlic?

The idea did not occur to me. But I bumped into a review of the Phillips Twin TurboStar XXL this morning and started to ponder.

Image result for pHilips Twin TurboStar XXÖ

What can an air fryer do that I cannot do otherwise?

The answer is not that much. But apparently it can do a few things of note. One of them is to roast garlic

… it was air-fried roasted garlic that really blew my mind. You can — without the fuss of heating up an entire oven — have golden nuggets of roasted garlic perfect for smothering on bread in as little as 15 minutes.

There is more

(You can) turn a can of chickpeas into the most delicious happy hour snack? I found that the air fryer does a much better job than the oven does at crisping these legumes. The convection dried each chickpea to crisp perfection.

And there are the fries. And the roast chicken. And … doughnuts

It was Air Fryer Every Day that turned me onto the idea of making doughnuts in the air fryer. The book has a recipe for apple cider doughnut holes that is so good — and for me, it was the single recipe that changed my opinion of the air fryer the most. (These doughnuts were seriously as good as their stovetop-fried counterparts.) I also tried a quick batch using a pre-made crescent roll dough one Saturday afternoon and they were just as delicious as the deep-fried kind, without all the mess.

Dangerous! There is more. So, do I need this? No. Am I curious? Yes.

The Web in My Kitchen – Dreaming of Better Cooking

Brad Leone offers this piece of sage advice

Take notes while you cook. When you’re deep into cooking, especially if you’re riffing, you may not remember what you did. And if you nailed it when all is said and done, you’ll want to be able to go back and remember what you did. I keep a journal in my home kitchen for jotting down notes.

This happens to me all the time. I sit back after a great meal and say “Wow! How did I get here?”  I remember things in general terms – but not well enough to upgrade my cooking routines.

For example — I experiment with using ground walnuts, but regularly forget to buy walnuts when I am at the food store.

But I am not in favor of writing down notes while cooking. Too much of a distraction. I would like a simpler interface.  A laptop in the kitchen? Or perhaps an Alexa style device that talks to me and records what I want to remember from cooking?

Something along those lines would be very cool. Sadly, I do not see that kind of product on the market. Will it come?

Stay tuned!

Excuse me, Do You Carry Urokotori?

Sadly, most kitchen stores would have to say “no”. Indeed, most would not know how to respond.

Urokotori is the Japanese word for fish scaler — so what we are talking about is a particular design. What’s the big deal?

“With an average one, scales fly all over the place—in your hair, eyes, everywhere! But the side wings on these block the mess. Brass head, great feel, and it also doubles as a meat tenderizer.”

Aha!

Japanese fish scaler from Urokotori

Yet another example that it is the little things  that add to our pleasure. A design tweak here, better materials there, and you feel the care that someone has put into the tools that you use.

And there is a store that specializes in just these types of kitchen tools. It is Coutelier in Nashville and New Orleans. BA offers a peek at some of their other products.

Check it out!

 

Orbital to NASA HQ. We are now Ice Cream Capable

After much cogitation, I did it. I bought the Sage.

Image result for Sage ice cream maker

And I made the first, experimental batch last night.

My initial reaction — the most complicated part of this is buying the ingredients. This machine is the ultimate in ice cream made easy. And the result? I set the “hardness” indicator for gelato and I go a very creamy soft product.

Next up — I will be experimenting with (1) chocolate, and (2) non-dairy (for my son). Almond milk with banana?

Stay tuned!