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Gadgets: 4-in-1 Flavor Injector by Progressive International

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[Photo: Amazon.com]

Marinade injectors always perplexed me a little bit: Marinades are made to be absorbed into meat without fancy tools, and that's much of their appeal. But Progressive International's 4-in-1 Flavor Injector ($12.59 at Amazon.com) features multiple tips that fulfill different purposes, and we've learned by now that I can't say no to multi-tasking kitchen tools.

Though I'm still unsure about the fourth function, I know I have three of them down pat: without a special tip, you can inject herbs or small solids, while two tips are included for liquids and chunks. Between the packaging and extensive research, it would seem that the fourth function is purely a storage system that lets you stick each tip into the next, all attaching into the plunger. If you ask me, that's not much of a fourth function.

I'll forgive Progressive International, at least in part, for faulty marketing. As it turned out, I really enjoyed the results of my efforts. After injected chunks of garlic, rosemary, and lemon juice into some chicken breasts, I cooked them on a pan and had a thoroughly impressive meal to present to my guests. When cut, you could see the layers I'd injected artfully revealed. Fancy indeed!

Given that the syringe is a bit awkward to load and only holds five teaspoons of liquid at once, I'll guess that using this to inject flavor into turkey would be a difficult endeavor. The length of the needle isn't long enough for such a big bird, either. But it's certainly worth playing around with for other purposes. Though I've yet to test all my ideas, I'm pretty excited about the jelly donuts I see in my future, and fig-stuffed lamb doesn't sound bad either.

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