2016 Gift Guide: Kitchen Accessories
For anyone who enjoys cooking and entertaining, kitchen accessories are always a hit. Here are some great ideas, from aprons and oven mitts to a butter churn.
By GRIT Editors
The new Appetizer Flex Tray from Great Useful Stuff is crafted from 100 percent eco-friendly bamboo, and features a removable white ceramic insert. From veggies and dips to wine and cheese, this tray can be adjusted to fit whatever you're serving. The tray also includes four removable magnetic dividers with chalkboard labels on the top, so each food item can be labeled for guests, and a removable bowl that can be placed in the center for dips or used on the side for pits, stems or shells.
Where to buy: Great Useful Stuff
Comments from the GRIT editors: Beautiful, elegant serving tray. Nice size for family get-togethers. The removable parts make it easy to clean. Chalkboard labels make food identification simple.
Aprons, Potholders, Oven Mitts, Dish Towels, & Tote Bags
Aprons, potholders, oven mitts, dish towels, and tote bags from Fluffy Layers make fantastic gifts for anyone who likes fun and fashionable products. Founded by Tara J. Grier in 2015, Fluffy Layers combines Grier's career in the fashion industry with her farming experience, and offers exciting designs and ideas for folks everywhere.
Comments from the GRIT editors: Well-made products that will last many years. Everything washes up nicely. Great assortment of colors, patterns, and designs. Nice that the aprons come in sizes for kids.
With the 1.5 Pound Bread Machine from Black & Decker, it's easier than ever to make homemade bread. The bread machine features 12 baking functions, a delay timer, two loaf sizes (1 pound and 1½ pounds), a keep-warm function, a power-failure protection feature, an LCD display, and a crust control button so the user can choose the desired darkness of the crust.
Where to buy: Black & Decker
Comments from the GRIT editors: Easy to use. Clean-up is simple. Loaf size option is nice. Has a lot of useful features. Delay timer is very handy. Makes a great loaf of bread.
Homemade butter just tastes better, and the whole family will benefit from a hand-powered Butter Churn from Churncraft. The churn is designed to produce rich, creamy, smooth-textured butter. Hand-assembled in Connecticut, the churn is constructed of high-quality stainless steel, glass, and wood components, with a curved wave paddle. The four-quart glass jar will churn two quarts of cream into approximately 1½ to 2 pounds of fresh butter in about 20 minutes or so — from start to finish.
Where to buy: Churncraft
Comments from the GRIT editors: Great for making large batches of butter. Fun and easy to use. Simple to clean. The process is so easy you'll never purchase butter again!
Digital Instant Read Thermometer
Cooking meat to perfection couldn't be easier with the Digital Instant Read Thermometer from OXO. Simply turn the battery-operated thermometer on, insert the stainless steel probe into the meat, and get an instant reading.
Where to buy: OXO
Comments from the GRIT editors: Quick, accurate readings. Common cooking temperatures on the case for quick reference come in handy. Easy to use, clean, and store.
Weigh both small and large quantities of food accurately with the 11-Pound Food Scale With Pull Out Display from OXO. This battery-operated scale features an easy-to-read display, and measures in both U.S. and metric measurements.
Where to buy: OXO
Comments from the GRIT editors: Accurate. Small size makes it easy to store in a drawer or cabinet, or leave on the counter. Easy to use. Wipes clean.
For anyone who makes jerky, slicing it just got easier. The Jerky Board & Knife Set from WESTON allows for the ideal jerky thickness of ¼- or ⅜-inch. The set includes a double-sided oak cutting board, an insert board for thinner cuts, a stainless steel cutting knife, an ounce of curing salt, and jerky seasoning for five pounds of meat.
Where to buy: WESTON
Comments from the GRIT editors: Nice tool set. Sharp knife. Insert board is perfect for getting thin cuts. Great-tasting seasoning.
Pressure Canning System
The Duo 10-Piece Pressure Canning Set from Fagor America makes a great gift for a beginner — and also for a seasoned professional whose canning equipment has seen better days. The set includes a 10-quart duo 18/10 stainless steel pressure cooker/canner, a home-canning cookbook, a pressure cooking booklet with recipes, a canning rack, a BPA-free wide-mouth funnel, a BPA-free ladle, a jar lifter and jar wrench, a BPA-free bubble freer, a magnetic lid lifter, and an instructional DVD and user's manual. In addition, the Fagor America website includes a helpful link to a quick guide to pressure cooking, as well as some pressure canning recipes to get folks started.
Comments from the GRIT editors: Easy to use. Illustrated step-by-step instructions are very helpful. Great size. The included cookbook features lots of recipes. The set includes everything needed to preserve, except the jars.
Keep fruits and vegetables fresh longer with Produce Keepers from OXO. The food storage containers are available in 1.6-quart, 4.3-quart, and 5-quart sizes to accommodate almost any fruit or vegetable. The Produce Keepers feature activated carbon filters that trap and absorb ethylene gas, and have a removable basket that promotes proper airflow and a vent for maintaining optimum humidity for different types of produce.
Where to buy: OXO
Comments from the GRIT editors: Keeps produce crisp and fresh. Nice size containers. Easy to store when not in use. Simple to clean.
Prepare a tossed salad in no time with the Chopped Salad Scissors from OXO. The scissors feature sharp, micro-serrated, stainless steel blades that effectively chop salad ingredients on the spot. Just place salad ingredients in a bowl, and chop them up with the scissors. Because the blades are rounded, they won't damage the bowl. The scissors also feature a locking tab to keep the blades closed when not in use.
Where to buy: OXO
Comments from the GRIT editors: Simple to use. Works well on all types of salad ingredients — lettuce, peppers, tomatoes, and more. Clean-up is easy. Doesn't scuff the salad bowl.