Category Archives: kitchen

Kitchen Stuff for the Ages!

Full Disclosure: I have a thing for kitchen “stuff”. Stuff includes gadgets, pots, pans, devices, you name it. I like it.

Perhaps it is because I am looking for this sort of thing. Perhaps my bias for all things kitchen oriented is distorting my judgment. But when media starts suggesting that you buy kitchen stuff so that you can hand it down to your heirs, something has clicked.

Williams Sonoma offers this set of recs for your “investments”

10 Kitchen Essentials to Pass Through the Generations

And if you click on the link to the article, you will find some pretty nice stuff.  This was one of the more unusual items

7. Laguiole 28-Piece Flatware Set, Horn

This heirloom-worthy 28-piece flatware set is made in the France’s Laguiole region. Each piece is crafted from six different varieties of animal horns, including ram and deer horn. This makes everything totally unique and special! The implements are made with high-quality stainless steel are made to last many lifetimes.

Nice!

If this trend continues, are we headed towards a market for “kitchen collectables”?  A market for collectables already exists, of course. I refer to high ends stuff. Like the market for antique cars. Or other items of rare value like porcelain.

To get there, we will need to build scarcity. Producers that target high end buyers and very limited production lines. Like the Ferrari for washing machines? It might sound a bit weird, but consider that digital marketers are trying to build scarcity for crypto valued assets like digital basketball cards.Will it work? Who knows!

Laugh if you will! But I do think we are headed in that direction.

You’re all Grown Up now. That Means You’ll Need Better Wine Glasses

In college, one was not so picky.

But after college, there comes a day when you invite people to your abode (even if that is just a studio apartment) for “a glass of wine”.

We all know that this is not just to have one glass of wine. There will be multiple glasses as well as some nibbles. And those multiple glasses of wine should be served in reasonably cool wine glasses.

I didn’t realize this when I was in my twenties. I bought the cheap stuff, and I broke wine glasses regularly when I washed them. I thought they were sort of disposable. But that changed when a nice young lady came over for a glass of wine with a present. It was a box of two really nice wine glasses.  Oops!

I figured it out. And btw, I got why having really nice wine glasses upgrades one’s lifestyle. These are pretty cool

Twine Stemless Crystal Wine Glasses

Tinted in a subtle pink, Twine’s gold-rimmed crystal glasses are at once stylish and easy to use. Since the stemless design is difficult to knock over, it makes for a perfect everyday glass. Designed for wine enthusiasts, each glass can hold 18 ounces of Viognier each and is by far the biggest option on our list. The set of two has a delightful art deco feel and will make a chic addition to any home bar. There are, however, a few drawbacks to stemless wine glasses. Unlike the rest of the options on this list, you’ll have to grasp this glass by the bowl rather than the stem, which will cause the wine’s temperature to rise. Fingerprints and smudge marks are also inevitable with a stemless glass. Still, they’re unequivocally cool.

Twine Stemless Crystal Wine Glasses

Amazon

BUY NOW: $27.96

But my fav these days are from Ittalla. They look a bit like this

10 Easy Pieces: The New Short Wine Glass - RemodelistaWhy the short stem? The stem — even though short — gives one a better hold on the glass than the orb. And because the stems are short, they tend to break less frequently.

But choose for yourself! It is now your world!

 

Here Comes Sam, the Pantry Manager!

I confess. My pantry is a mess. I have all sorts of stuff that I cannot find, and I don’t have stuff that I could use.

The problem is that I don’t find the time to pay attention to my pantry. It’s sort of an “ad hoc pantry”. Not only that, it is not organized. So I have no idea where  half the stuff is.

So I liked Sam’s post on what SHOULD be in a pantry.

And Sam offers a pretty nice list.  And there is a onus. Sam’s tips. Here is one that I use and swear by

Blend butter and olive oil
Try cooking with a 50:50 combo of butter and olive oil. Butter adds flavor and the oil keeps the butter from burning.

BTW, Sam offers his “staples” shopping list on another page. A while back, I developed my own staples shopping list on my IPone  REminders app. This worked pretty well for a while, but it fell out of  use. Not sure why. I will try again to get this going and incorporate Sam’s list into it.

BTW, a quick Google later, and I see there is a ton of content on pantry management. Who knew?

So, here is the thing. I will be adding a new section to my “kitchen home pages” on my own pantry management. I will start with Sam’s tips and develop more cool ideas for making my pantry work. If and when I come up with one worth sharing, you will see it here.

Enjoy!

Things that Just Work – Unicorn Pepper Mill

This caught my eye – and I want one!

The Unicorn Pepper Mill is good. Really good. But part of what makes it shine so brightly is how bad the competition is. Pepper mills (aka pepper grinders) rank just behind knives as primary causes of horrific kitchen accidents,

Unicorn Magnum Pepper Mill 6" Black: Amazon.co.uk: Kitchen & Home

BTW, not everyone is as impressed by the Unicorn. Reviewed picked  the Peugeot Paris as its top choice.

Here is their take on the Unicorn

We were surprised at the lack of features in the Unicorn Magnum Plus, especially considering that it was one of the most expensive pepper mills we tested. We will say this grinder was extremely easy to fill: Slide open the access door and hold the mill at an angle to funnel the peppercorns into the grinding chamber. It also held an astounding one cup of peppercorns, four times the amount of some of the other mills. That said, it got clogged often, and it was hard to twist the plastic knob, especially with wet or oily hands. The grind was controlled by a slider located at the bottom of the grinder, which meant our hands got dirty every time we adjusted it. Considering that the finest grind couldn’t all go through the sieve and the coarsest grind was barely ground half peppercorns, we didn’t think this one was worth the high price tag.

Hmmm … food for thought!

Kitchen Gear – Carbon Steel or Cast Iron?

According to Robb, the answer is carbon steel!

Carbon steel skillets often get compared to their cast-iron brethren, but they’re the superior pick for a few reasons. For one, they’re stronger and therefore more long lasting than cast iron. For another, a carbon steel skillet can handle even higher temperatures than a cast iron one. Plus, carbon steel is a lighter weight material and it’s (mercifully) nonstick. Just remember to season your new carbon steel cookware before you braise any meat in it, unless it’s pre-seasoned. Otherwise, food will stick and the skillet will be more prone to rust.

Check out the article for recs on the best carbon steel makers!

Yes, I want one!

Indulging in a Clack Egg Opener!

I just bumped into this product idea today from Robb, and yes, I want one. In part for the fun of it, and in part because I like eggs for breakfast. Here is the core idea

The slender invention––which originated in Germany––cradles an egg from above and, while the swift pull of a spring neatly breaks off the top portion of the shell, turning it into a natural bowl. Not only do clack egg openers create a novel way to enjoy your egg, they can make preparing several quick and easy. And the presentation is hard to beat.

Here is one at work

Clack Egg Cracker – Homeware, Furniture And Gifts | Mocha

Here is one at work (Note the mood music – a bit cooky, but I like that sort of thing.

And here is a selection of models in use (again note the kooky music!)

So why don’t I have one of these???