Archive for the ‘gadgets’ Category

equipment upgrade

Team, I’m not a crazy person, I promise, but there’s very little I like more than wandering through a kitchen gadget shop and coming home with a new tool. I feel like it’s maybe the domesticated version of being a young music snob and NEEDING to come home with SOMETHING from the record shop on Saturday afternoons.

This weekend, it was a newer, better pastry blender.

That one. Infinitely better than the wire one I had that had seen better days.

I hope this doesn’t make me a basic bitch.



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Get yourself a crock pot.

Seriously, mine is my favorite thing in the wintertime. Dump in some meat, some veggies, some liquid. Go to work. Come home to the greatest smells of all time.

This isn't as flattering as it could be.

When I lived in Big Rapids, I interviewed this phenomenal chef who gave me all kinds of easy-peasy recipes to cook in the wintertime, real comfort food. His recipes were all delicious, but the best one is the one I’ll share here (and the one I make about once a month in the winter).

You’ll need:

A good pork butt, bone-in (THAT’S WHAT SHE SAID) (no, seriously, the pork butt is good, but if you keep kosher, you might try a pot roast instead)

Enough dark beer to cover ┬áthe meat (I like Leinenkugel’s Creamy Dark, but Guiness works too. Pick one that you’ll like so you can finish the six-pack)

Onion, if desired. I bet a carrot would be nice here, too.

Throw everything in the crock pot. Salt and pepper. Make sure the beer is covering your meat completely. Put the crock pot on low and go about your day. Come home and enjoy, preferably with cheesy potatoes and green beans.


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tools of the trade

You don’t need much to cook. Something to heat with, a knife, a pot and a pan should suffice. But I can never resist the siren song of a kitchen gadget. Remember how much easier making pie crust was when I got a pastry mixer? Best five bucks I ever spent.

So when I decided I was going to make Jessica’s potato and kale soup from a while back, I knew I could easily slice potatoes super thin for the broth.

Or I could get a mandoline.

What a handy little tool! All my potato slices came out in neat, uniform size. I would recommend using the little spiky tool that comes with the thing, though, otherwise some of your thumb meat is going to be in a neat, uniform slice in your dish, too.



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