After all these years of cooking, I finally got my first food processor and I am underwhelmed.
On the other hand I use my microplane on a daily basis and wonder how I ever got along without it. Garlic! Parmesan cheese! Nutmeg! Ginger! Lemon peel! And more Garlic!! Microplane, you are the one that I love best.
Put a hole thru a one-foot concrete wall in a little over a minute. Drill a hole in stones, then stack them up on a re-bar. Or, run a water line in them for a fountain.
My best use of my hammerdrill, and the reason I got it, was to put 100 feet of tunnels under my house, in hard clay, so that I could get the foundation fixed. The month I made those tunnels I pretended I was breaking out of jail.
But I have a question for all you garlic press people: How can you love a machine that is such a royal pain to clean? I did see a garlic peeler at Whole Foods that was basically an empty, garlic-shaped piece of rubber. It made me giggle.
dame, if you are lucky enough to have a Zylis press, than you know that you don't have to peel the cloves, and that cleaning it is a breeze because the leftover peel stuff lifts out the leftover pulp stuff from all the little holes. Effortlessly.
Knives my dears, knives, wooden spoons, a big ass cast iron pan and a vegetable steamer. (I do wish I had a million gadgets though, I am a food porn addict). I have no idea why anyone uses a garlic press and I never allow it, smush the garlic with the flat of a knife and downward hand pressure (peel comes off super easy that way) and then chop or sliver it, I says.
Screwdrivers, Flashlights, Ipod, Duct Tape.
My crock pot OTOH is trying to kill me. Fuck that crock pot. I did get to laugh all day yesterday when the special lady called it a cock pot. Cooking pot roast in the cock pot. Pot O' Cocks.
I have no idea why anyone uses a garlic press and I never allow it, smush the garlic with the flat of a knife and downward hand pressure (peel comes off super easy that way) and then chop or sliver it, I says.
I used to be a garlic press snob until I found out the Truth. The only reason not to use one is that you lose some of the clove in the press, or your recipe calls for slivers of garlic. Otherwise, you're getting the same garlic and garlic oil with a press as you do from chopping it up. Sometimes I smoosh and chop up the clove for the fun of it, too.
I know, but I like to chop and sliver and smush. I am happier knowing there is no real reason for it.
(Although I do find when I make pasta sauce the little chunklets of garlic, as opposed to smushed nodules that sort of disintergrate because they don't have any of the final out garlic atmosphere skin around them, brown and sorta toast/roast in the olive oil really well and stick around a bunch in the sauce. I also like shoving garlic into chicken and roasts of meat and find the slivers work best for this, especially on lamb.)
Family snobbery. Only silly Americans who only learned about garlic in 1985 have garlic presses. (Never mind that my family immigrated in the nineteenth century.) And your children are for peeling the garlic. Furthermore, if you are hungry before dinner, you can have raw spaghetti. That's it. (My boy thinks the raw spaghetti is gross, but he eats still-frozen French fries, so whatever.)
Speaking of Italians, I was watching that Lydia lady yesterday on the PBS. She has good stuff to cook, but she's very bossy, all telling me how this particular dish will nourish my heart AND my body and that I should
eat a little plate before the grandchildren get there so I'll have more time to hover over them and give them complexes about food later in life. Sheesh.
No way, D_W. When I was a kid, all the Americans ate their sauce out of cans and had never heard of garlic. And they boiled their veggies. Then again, I didn't have a bagel till I was in high school, so what do I know?
My cleaver. Cost me $20 at a restaurant supply store in Chinatown. I use it practically every day, so I keep it as sharp as possible.
I can smush about 5 garlic cloves at a time, and I can dice a pile of Jalapenos, onions, garlic cloves and shallots by just chopping the crap outta the pile with the oversized blade (none of that sissy scoring the onion first so the pieces come out perfectly even crap for me).
That and my cast iron skillet, which was a gift from my girlfriend. When she gave it to me, I vowed (to no one in particular) that I'd never cook anything lousy with it, and I've yet to let it (me) down.
In the kitchen, I love my big-ass butcher knife, my All-Clad saute pan, the really excellent (and sort of expensive) veggie peeler I bought after the ex moved out with the one I'd received as a gift, my Henckel knife sharpener, the honing steel, and pretty much anything else that has to do with my knives. In the garage, I'd lay down my life for my cordless drill, Sawzall, lathe, and carefully reconditioned antique chisel.
Ahh fucking Sawzall. I love a Sawzall, you can lay some rude ass cuts on some stuff with a Sawzall. I like saying it and reading it too, Sawzall. My Sawzall got stolen, I traded demo work and painting worth more than a Sawzall for my Sawzall, I never regretted it. Sawzall.
In general, I think that a narrowly-defined tool is often a joy to use, frequently because it does a single job so much better than its more general cousins.
I couldn't agree more - a tool that does many jobs usually does none of them very well.
I love all my tools and gadgets and I have lots, because I love to buy them and hang them on the garage wall neatly almost as much as I love to use them to make stuff. I am a sick person.
jrossi4r, get a really fucking good way-too-expensive chef's knife and a wooden cutting board. All the rest is gloss. But cooking with a substandard knife is an ordeal, cooking with a good one is a joy.
Oh, yes, second the sharp knives thing too - I regularly take all the sharp knives out into the garage and sharpen them on an oilstone - I wish I could learn to use a steel, but have never got around to it.
Blunt knives suck lots, but cutting things with a sharp one is relative bliss. Safer also.