Thursday, June 24, 2010

Part Two: Tools that Help You ENJOY Cooking!

I hear you! You need an excuse to buy more stuff for your kitchen! I'm ready and able to enable...
Cookie scoops, like these classic stainless steel beauties from Norpro, will change your feelings about baking cookies. We all love cookies, but making 24-48 little balls is not the most gratifying task. The scoops keep your hands free, fill the sheet pan in 2 minutes, and perfectly portion the dough for even, round cookies.
Keeping with the stainless theme, shallow metal prep bowls like these by WINCO have more uses than you can imagine. They aren't deep like mixing bowls, but generously sized and shallow to make mixing pasta, salad, meatloaf, and everything else a breeze. Plus, they're a bargain from restaurant supply stores.If you've never tried keeping your spices in a drawer, it'll change your world. You can read all the labels at once and quickly find and replace what you're looking for. I'm still waiting for more stylish options to emerge, but for now these by Dial provide the best fit for existing drawers and bottles.
This is the best can opener I've ever used. And I've tested, cut up, and redesigned dozens of them over the years. This one locks in place for secure use and compact storage and it NEVER slips. Yet again, OXO transforms a frustrating task into a pleasurable one.Treat your self to an attractive oil cruet like this one from Mario Batali's line. Too often our counters are crowded with bulky oil bottles for cooking. Grab a couple of cruets, color coded or labeled, and transform your countertop into a sleek cook's station.

Catch up on Part One here!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Verdict: Water Bottle Buddies are...

If your dog craves crunching water bottles, these toys are for you. Water Bottle Buddies like those sold by Kyjen provide an adorable sleeve for your water bottle, protecting your dog from bottle shards. When the bottle's shot, toss it in the recycling bin.

The Good: I love anything that reuses the things we discard. Plus, you're eliminating stuffing from hitting the trash bin. Cuteness, economically priced under $10.

The Bad: These aren't as durable as they should be. Westminster Pet Products makes the sleeves you see below, which are extremely durable but could stand an infusion of cuteness.
The Verdict: Can someone please marry the two? Nylon sleeves should be able to achieve both cuteness and durability. Then this product would be truly excellent.