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Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Making life easier in the kitchen

Over the years I have bought my fair share of kitchen gadgets because I am always on the hunt for time saving devices.  Many of them have been disappointing and end up taking up valuable shelf space, gathering dust.

Recently however, I have brought some fantastic new kitchen tools into my home!  And after using them for a couple of months, I can confidently report that they are in regular use with no opportunity to gather dust.

The most versatile of my new purchases is the Kenwood Compact Food Processor.  This really does save lots of time when cooking and preparing food, and has allowed me to make all kinds of foods that I never made before; coleslaw takes a couple of minutes to prepare (and is so much more delicious than shop-bought versions).  And preparing onions, mushrooms etc for something like a bolognese sauce also takes just moments. It makes light work of pretty much anything that needs chopping or blending .  Very pleased with this purchase!




And to go with the food processor, I also bought Jamie's 30 Minute Meals.  I've never actually bought one of Jamie Oliver's books before and this one does not disappoint.  I, like most people, have recipe books on my shelf that have only been used a handful of times, but I have made at least five recipes from this book (some of them a couple of times) within a few weeks of owning it.  I really think it's an amazing book - the food is delicious and the recipes are presented as a complete meal, with side dishes and sometimes desserts too.  Last night I made chicken satay with fiery noodle salad - YUM.



Something that I am using several times a week is my new Zyliss garlic press.  I find that garlic presses are often fiddly to use and clean, and I have been searching for a perfect solution to crushing garlic for some time. The unique thing about the Zyliss press is that you don't have to peel the garlic cloves before you press them.  So you just put the whole clove in - no peeling or cutting required - and crush!  The skin is left behind in the press and you throw it away.  Rinse the press to clean it, and that's it.  This is the best garlic press I have ever used!




My Joseph Joseph Citrus Reamer is another new addition to my kitchen.  Although not quite so pivotal when preparing food, I do love this gadget.  I use it for squeezing lemon juice onto salads or onto food; it catches the pips and is easy to rinse clean.







The last item on this review is not new, and I've owned it for a few years.  It's a Hamburger Maker and with the start of BBQ season it's been getting a lot of use.  Home made burgers are miles better than shop bought versions in terms of taste, but also in terms of nutrition.  When you make anything at home you know that nothing dodgy is going into it.  And if you are not keen on beef, you can use this burger maker with any other kind of mince (turkey, lamb etc) or fish.  I have even used it with a chickpea mixture too.





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4 comments

Chocolate Fairy said...

Great post Melanie! I LOVE Jamie's newest book and especially the satay chicken with the noddle salad. In fact, I've been making the boodle salad on its own for lunch quite often (it's fab with prawns too). And yes, the food processor makes life so much easier!

Melanie Flower said...

Thank you!

Other firm favourites in our house are the Cypriot Chicken with flatbreads, and Tasty Crusted Cod. Find myself evangelising about this book often!

Clare Underwood said...

Hi Melanie
I always like to read your posts. Great kitchen utensil ideas. I like Nigel Slater's 30 minute cook book too. It is really quite old, but I have used heaps of his ideas.
Happy Christmas
Clare Underwood

Melanie Flower said...

Thanks for your comment Clare!

Will definitely look up Nigel's 30 minute book, as I like Nigel Slater as well.

Happy Christmas to you too


Melanie

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