Saturday, October 1, 2011

More on Kitchen Gadgets

Last week, I briefly mentioned the importance of having kitchen gadgets that you love.  They truly do make cooking more fun, which makes you want to do it more, which means you spend less money eating out.  I mentioned my KitchenAid stand mixer and my VitaMix blender.  You can check out these items at their websites by clicking on their links. We purchased the VitaMix as a reconditioned unit.  The company has great offers on their reconditioned units and they come with a full warranty.  I use mine as a blender, food processor, grinder, and so much more.

Other items that I do feel are worth the investment are the Excalibur dehydrator, the Nutrimill grain mill, and the Bosch Universal mixer.  I use the Excalibur dehydrator for so many different uses - making homemade yogurt, allowing bread to rise, drying jars for dehydrated items, dehydrating, etc.  You can sometimes find Excalibur dehydrators reconditioned on their website.  I use the Nutrimill grain mill for grinding wheat kernels into whole wheat flour and popcorn into cornmeal.  I use the Bosch Universal mixer for mixing larger loaves of bread than I feel comfortable doing in my KitchenAid (my KitchenAid is a smaller, older unit - I think the larger units now have stronger motors).

For pressure canning purposes, I have both Presto canners like this and All American canners like this one.  They both get the job done, but I do like having the pressure and weighted guage on the All American.  I do believe that Presto has larger canners with both dial and weighted guages.  For water bath canning, I have the granite canner like this and a stainless steel canner like this.  The granite canner is a bit cheaper, and can be found cheaper without the entire "kit".  I will say, though, that i like the flat bottom rack much better than the racks with the jar dividers.  My jars just never seem to fit well in those dividers.  On the rack, I removed the "handles" and just use the jar grabbers to put the jars in and out.  The benefit to the stainless steel pot is that it can be used for a large stock pot and not just canning.  I also like the clear lid that comes with it.

These are some of the larger kitchen items that I use regularly.  Yes, these are rather pricey items, but in the end, I truly feel that their initial expense is worth it.  Don't think that I went out and purchased all of these items at once.  I have asked for these items for gifts (birthday, Christmas, Mother's day, anniversary) from my husband through the years, and am happy that I did so.   I would much rather have these items that I am going to use than something "sparkly" that I will not use.

(I have not been compensated by any of the above-mentioned companies.  I am just sharing the items that I have in my kitchen and enjoy using in cooking and preparing food.)

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