Modern Gadgets Simplify Cooking


Country Moon 

Why do you cook, other than for the obvious reason that we all like to eat? Beyond that, is it a passion, a hobby, a challenge or a chore? Wherever you fall in these categories, there are some modern gadgets and appliances on the market that make this task a whole lot easier and faster.

You know what they say about old-school habits. Well, recently I learned the hard way how to break some of those in the interest of ease in the kitchen. I wanted to make my mother’s cranberry Jello salad, which calls for the cranberries and oranges to be ground. She always used the hand grinder, you know the kind that screws onto a table or cabinet and you put the food to be ground in a hopper in the top and turn a crank and all the goodies comes out ground into a bowl, or rather, they are supposed to. Instead, I always have a mess of sticky juice on the floor, on the table, and basically all over.

In the middle of this mess, it occurred to me that, unlike my mother’s world, I have a blender. So, I left the sticky mess and put it all in the blender, only to have this not work so well either because there was not enough liquid for it to work properly. Fine. So, I went to my handy dandy Pampered Chef all purpose chopper. It worked great, I had the consistency of the cranberries that I needed…but only after I had made a serious mess and dirtied three different gadgets. There are simpler ways to do simple tasks, we only have to embrace new technology.

One of those gadgets that is hot in the world of new kitchen technology is the Instant Pot. This is a single appliance that does the job of seven different kitchen tools including a slow cooker, electric pressure cooker, rice cooker, steamer, yogurt maker, saute-browning pan and a warming pot.

So many folks, including myself, are leery of using a pressure cooker because of the horror stories of something going wrong and hot food ends up in every corner of the kitchen. The Instant Pot has ten built-in safety mechanisms that make it safe to use. Being a pressure cooker, it cooks so much faster than conventional methods so, by saving so much cooking time, it makes it possible to eat healthy meals at home. Beef stew can be ready in under 30 minutes and baby back ribs are ready to set on the table in less than 25 minutes. It makes so many more meal choices doable for weeknight suppers and it does it using 70 percent less energy.

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