Training to Live

living and learning, one day at a time

my faves

i decided to put together a list of my top five kitchen appliances that increase the quality of my life.

1) the immersion blender. i use this almost every day, sometimes twice. it’s fantastic for smoothies, hummus, soups, apple butter, etc. i like to refer to it as, from c&z, le mixeur girafe.
favorite application: butternut squash soup

2) the ice cream maker. when i originally expressed interest in having one of these a few years ago, there were many naysayers. “you will never use it” and “it will collect dust on your shelf” etc etc. well, lucky for me, david lebovitz wrote an awesome book and making your own ice cream is all the rage these days. i love ice cream. i love making really yummy things. i love being able to make fantastic kinds of ice cream that i probably would not be able to afford on a regular basis, which are totally natural and made with whole foods and local ingredients.

favorite application: goat cheese ice cream sandwiched between double chocolate cookies.

3) the rice cooker. i scored this one for free with grocery store points, which makes it doubly awesome. i make way more than just rice in here – oatmeal, rice dishes with mixins (my favorite so far is coconut milk, frozen peppers and edamame), bulgar, wheatberries, etc. i love that i don’t need to babysit it. i can throw some grain in, push the button and go to the basement to work out or have a shower or do something that is not staying near the stove to keep an eye on my pot of rice. i eat rice a lot more than i ever did because it is so easy!
favorite application: stuffing for acorn squash – 1/2 brown rice, 1/2 bulgar, craisins, chopped up dried apricots, and other dried fruit you’ve got around. 2X liquid – chicken stock is good but water works. apple cider is excellent in a pinch. bake the squash while the rice cooks, and when it’s done scoop the filling in and top with some goat cheese. yum.

4) the slow cooker. another appliance that needs no babysitting. do you see a theme? nothing better than coming home to delicious smells and supper (or something else) ready to go, right into my tummy!
favorite application: chili. apple butter is also a winner, because it takes freaking forever and have i mentioned i hate babysitting my food? i made a crockpot roast chicken a few weeks ago and it was awesome.

5) the food dehydrator. like with my ice cream maker, there were many anti-folk. the dehydrator is an appliance that you’re supposed to borrow from friends. well. i don’t have any friends that own food dehydrators. i love dried fruit. took the plunge and it has been delicious. it’s a great (and really easy! no babysitting! i set it up on a plug in timer because they don’t come with autoshut offs) way to preserve food. you can make your own camping meals, it contributes to my eating local longer throughout the year, and it cuts down on the amount of packaged stuff i have to buy.
favorite application: niagara seedless concord grapes make kickass raisins! i never thought i’d ever make my own raisins, but these are the best i’ve ever had. rings of pineapple are also really yummy. apple chips make a great crispy super healthy snack. i haven’t made fruit leather or beef jerky yet, but there’s no stopping me!

so there you have it. these are the things i would be sad to have to live without!
up next: favorite tools (or gadgets, it depends how you look at it)


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March 5, 2009 at 8:15 pm Comments (7)