My Favourite Kitchen Gadgets
I’ve always been a bit of a kitchen gadget girl. My favourite time of the year is when the Lakeland catalogue arrives. I rush through looking for all the items marked NEW. Whenever we go to the states, whilst most people are heading for Abercrombie & Fitch, I’m looking for the nearest William Sonoma. Though, even more exciting for me, is finding an independent kitchen store crammed with goodies. There’s one in San Francisco at the ferry terminal, which is a treasure trove. Finding that, combined with visiting the nearby Sunday Farmer’s Market, I thought I’d died and gone to heaven.
I also love to visit supermarkets when we’re abroad, getting terribly excited about the different ingredients. My favourite is a Byerleys in Minnesota. We have friends there and whenever we visit they’re always confused when I keep volunteering to go shop. In fact we always have to build in a self catering element to any holiday so I can go find local ingredients and cook.
I have several items in the B&B that are indispensable and I would struggle to do without. Currently I have a bit of fetish for small glass bowls – every time I visit our local supermarket, Harry Tuffins, I end up buying another one. They’re terribly useful at breakfast for making scrambled eggs.
So here’s are the Top 5 gadgets that I couldn’t be without:
Panasonic Bread Maker
Guests seem to like having fresh homemade bread to toast in the morning. Once, following an article about my training courses in a broadsheet newspaper, I received an email from a discontented B&B guest ( not one of mine ). It was several pages long & complained about the state of toast in British B&Bs. This person was very keen that I educated prospective B&Bers on the importance of using good bread. Actually, personally, I’m always quite happy with a nice bit of Warburtons, but I guess it’s personal taste :0)
I use the dough function of the bread maker & then make into 2 loaves which I bake in the oven. I find this less wasteful and makes for nice compact slices which are perfect for toasting.
Philips Citrus Squeezer
I’ve always served freshly squeezed orange juice at the B&B. I like it when I go away, so I’m hoping my guests appreciate it too. It is time consuming & can take me 15 minutes to juice enough for 6 guests. So I’m always happy when my husband appears in the kitchen & volunteers to squeeze the oranges for me.
This juicer is simple, cheap & does the job perfectly.
Not a cheap piece of kit but I love the heavy glass jar. I was converted to homemade smoothies by that friend in Minnesota, and I offer them for breakfast here. I use frozen raspberries, apple juice, honey, natural yoghurt, a banana and then whizz. It’s also a good way of using leftover berries in the summer. If I know they won’t be used I put them in the freezer ready for smoothie making.
I also used the blender for making quick hollandaise when I have Eggs Benedict on the menu as a daily special.
Cheap & simple metal mini whisks from Lakeland. I struggle without them. I scramble eggs, whisk up the wet ingredients for muffins and stir the water for the poached eggs with them.
Mini Duralex Bowls
More glass bowls – told you I was obsessed. These are indispensable in the B&B kitchen. Great for melting small quantities of butter and cracking eggs into prior to being poached or fried.
Having read that I’ve realised I do have a bit of a fixation with all things mini. Maybe it’s something to do with being a bit vertically challenged myself.
Next time – what ingredients couldn’t I live without?
What are your favourite kitchen gadgets?