In Gear, Required Eating

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In Gear: Watch Out Teapot, Behold Adagio Tea's TriniTEA Electric Maker

Matthew Amster-Burton 7 comments

Sure, I live in coffee country, but as soon as I saw Adagio Teas TriniTEA—something of a cross between a coffee machine and Big Mac—I had to try it. For $100, the electronic tea kettle can make up to four cups with the ability to brew at two temperatures (212°F for black and herbal tea, 185°F for everything else) and steep between two to eight minutes. How Does It Work? Just put loose tea leaves in the steeping chamber and add water to the first of three chambers. After turning on the machine, water will reach the proper temperature, then it beeps and dispenses water into the steeping chamber. When it's done steeping, the machine beeps again and allows the... More

In Gear: Pitcher Perfect, DWR's New Filter Pitcher

Amanda Clarke 4 comments

Water filtration pitchers can certainly be useful for improving the quality of tap water, but they have their drawbacks. Filter pitchers require regular replacement of disposable plastic filters to maintain performance, and they are generally big, bulky, and nothing to look at. For all but the most casual gatherings and dinner parties, I decant filtered water into a glass or ceramic vessel that looks better and takes up less table space than my filtration pitcher. Though it may not be ideal, this method works well enough that I’d never much considered another possibility. Filtering with Charcoal and Stones Design Within Reach Then, while flipping through the pages of the latest Design Within Reach (DWR) catalogue, I found a tempting alternative:... More

In Gear: Flour Sack Kitchen Towels (An Old-Fashioned Staple for Modern Kitchens)

Amanda Clarke 22 comments

There was a time when dry goods like flour, rice and chicken feed were sold almost exclusively in sturdy, tightly woven cotton sacks. Enterprising (or frugal) consumers often reused sacks in their original forms for storage, carrying goods, as hand-stuffed pillows, and more. More

Water Works: How To Make Seltzer at Home

Lucy Baker 22 comments

The Soda-Club Home Seltzer Maker kit costs less than $100, and contains a carbonating bottle with enough carbon dioxide to make up to 110 liters of seltzer. Think about it: that's 110 less liter-sized bottles in the recycling bin, or worse, the trash can. More

In Gear: Beer Accessories for Summer Suds

Amanda Clarke 1 comment

Aaaah, beer. In my opinion, there are few things more satisfying on a hot day. For those of you of like mind, here are a few nifty ideas for getting your beer on: Tool Bottle Openers Bearing likeness to pliers and wrenches, these tool bottle openers will impart a greater sense of productivity to the opening of your next brew. $25, from The Curiosity Shoppe... More

How to Make Homemade Bomb Pops

Amanda Clarke 9 comments

Icy cold popsicles can be a welcome addition to summer gatherings, even more so if you make them yourself in festive colors and interesting flavors. Popsicle-making is a simple endeavor, but the range of equipment options for making them is extensive. Here, we guide you through store-bought and DIY ice-pop-making options. More

UV Light Helps Sort Crabmeat From Cartilage

Emily Koh 3 comments

Photograph taken by Melissa Hom, from Grub Street Now there's no excuse for finding cartilage in your warm peekytoe crab cake with shaved cauliflower at Le Bernardin. They use an ultraviolet light that distinguishes crabmeat from cartilage (the cartilage appears a much brighter white), which executive chef Eric Ripert discovered last year after seeing it on a French TV program. Related The 50 Best Restaurants in the World, per S. Pellegrino Eric Ripert's New Website In Videos: Anthony Bourdain Interviews Eric Ripert... More

In Gear: The Scoop on the Nuscüp

Amanda Clarke 3 comments

simplygoodstuff.com I acquired a Nuscüp (pronounced: noo-skoop) adjustable measuring cup last year out of curiosity rather than need. I already had an adjustable measuring cup—the Metric Wonder Cup—with which I was perfectly content, but thinking it might make for a worthwhile write-up here on Serious Eats, I scarfed up the last Nuscüp in stock at the local Sur La Table—a boxless floor model. Initial Failure My first experience with it was one of utter disappointment. As soon as I got home, I ran to the sink to measure out some tap water; the water slipped right past the rubber gasket (around the edge of the cup’s adjustable bottom) and into the body of the cup. I took the Nuscüp apart... More

Cakesicle Pan

Sarah Wolf 3 comments

Eating cake with a fork is so last year. In fact, forget about plates too. These Norpro Cakesicle pans from Target offer a new alternative just in time for summer: stick a stick in it. One eight-cakesicle pan also comes with 25 sticks and a free recipe booklet. Related Literally a Cup-cake Easy Easter Bunny Cake Serious Eats Gift Guide: For the Baker... More

Fun, Funky Ice Cream Sandwich Molds

Lucy Baker 6 comments

Ice cream molds from Tovolo. Ice cream sandwiches are the quintessential summertime treat—sweet, refreshing, and pre-rationed into eat-with-your fingers portions. While there are numerous versions of these icy treats available in supermarkets, they are simple and fun to make at home. Especially if you use Tovolo Ice Cream Sandwich Molds.... More

Father's Day Gift Guide: Cooking Gadgets and Kitchen Gear

Amanda Clarke 2 comments

Equipped with little more than a hibachi grill and an improvised chimney (a rusty old bottomless chicken-feed bucket that has been a part of his life for at least as long as I have), my father has expertly rendered some of the most delicious, perfectly cooked steaks of my life. On the other end of the spectrum, he’s also been known to make phone calls to the 800-number on the back of a frozen fish stick box to inquire whether or not said fish sticks could be microwaved rather than baked and how to do so. Cooking can be uncertain ground with dads, but eating and gadgetry rarely are. So, gifted chef or Chef Boyardee, here’s a spectrum of gadgets... More

In Gear: Noble Enamel

Amanda Clarke 7 comments

Composed of a hard vitreous glaze melded at high temperatures to a metal substrate, enamelware is extremely durable, shatterproof, heat and rust resistant, non-reactive, and easy to clean. More

The 14 M.P.H. Beer Cooler

Adam Kuban 9 comments

When I look at this motorized, scooter-based beer cooler, you know what I see? I see a marauding gang of 12 to 15 frat boys, on spring break, riding from hotel to motel to pool to beach. That's not a slam on frat boys. You see, the next logical and ridiculously glorious extension of this "14 M.P.H. beer cooler" is that you'd get together with your buddies and form a 14 M.P.H. beer cooler biker gang. Fraternity brothers already have the legendary party skills; they're notorious for pranks; they're in college, so they've got the time; and they could use house funds to equip themselves. A 500-watt motor drives the cooler, which can hold up to 24 twelve-ounce cans and... More

The OctoDog Hot Dog Converter, Reviewed

Adam Kuban 5 comments

Photograph courtesy of Cia_B The OctoDog is a zany little plastic contraption that converts ordinary everyday hot dogs into octopus-lookin' works of ... edible art? Blogger Cia_B recently got her hands on one and puts it to the test here. I especially like the photo she took (above), comparing an octofied wiener to the real thing. Brilliant. OctoDog, $16.95 plus shipping, from OctoDog.net... More

In Gear: Hacking Mason Jars

Amanda Clarke 29 comments

In 1858 John L. Mason of New York City received a patent for improvements on jars meant for food storage and preservation, including a continuous raised spiral or thread around the mouth of the jar. This type of glass storage jar was inexpensive, more or less infinitely reusable, easy to clean, and imparted no off flavors, as was the case with metal containers. More

If R2D2 Were a Roving Robotic Beer Cooler

Adam Kuban 2 comments

The RC Beer Cooler is the ultimate in laziness. Sure to increase your beer gut by eliminating even the walk to the fridge. Just thought I'd point out this thing to you over the Memorial Day holiday. Looks like it holds a sixer and probably travels at a glacial pace, since it looks like it runs on C batteries. It's too late to order one for this three-day weekend, but you've got all summer to start working on your flabs. $70 from Solutions.com [via Urban Daddy]... More

In Gear: An Outdoor Dining Indulgence: Portable Blenders

Amanda Clarke 2 comments

For most of us, Memorial Day weekend marks the launch of the outdoor dining season, marshalling in a summer of picnics, barbecues, and pool and beach parties. As I find the standard gear marketed specifically for such occasions (folding picnic tables, special baskets and packs for tableware and flatware, enormous tong/spatula/fork sets, etc.) to be flimsy, fussy and/or cumbersome, I turn to camping suppliers when I’m looking for tools to get my outdoor eat on. There I tend to find equipment that is robust enough to withstand the elements and a good bit of jostling, lightweight and compact enough to be easily transported on foot, and just plain sensible for outdoor/remote usage. Now, I appreciate the simplicity necessitated by al... More

In Gear: Lighten Up with Cream Whippers

Amanda Clarke 3 comments

Despite the implication of their name and the regularity with which they appear behind coffee bars, for topping dessert-like beverages with snowy mounds of dairy goodness, cream whippers are good for more than whipping cream. In restaurant kitchens the devices are prized for making and keeping delicate sweet or savory mousses, sauces and foams. More

The Boundless Value of Disposable Chopsticks (and More)

Amanda Clarke 5 comments

For those who may not be receiving returns this year, a few tips for squeezing extra value out of ordinary kitchen items: In addition to their overt purpose, standard issue rounded stainless steel measuring spoons are also excellent for neatly removing cores from halved apples and pears, balling melon and making small, perfectly round ice cream scoops (to make ice cream orbs come out easily, dip the spoon in warm water before scooping, and after scooping rub the back of the spoon back and forth across the palm of your hand a few times to warm the metal slightly).... More

A Medieval Multitasker: The Whisk

Amanda Clarke 4 comments

The whisk is more than a tool for aeration. Useful for making sauces, emulsions and more, it is one of the home kitchen’s greatest multitaskers. Here is some information for selecting and making the most of this apparatus, which dates to medieval times. More

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