"I ain't the sharpest tool in the shed…"

by Katie Pizzuto on June 7, 2010

in Cooking,Cooking Tools

I’m not altogether sure how other bloggers operate, but I’m the kind of writer who’s constantly finding inspiration for articles all over the place, whether in a magazine, at a store, watching TV, whatever. That basically translates into tiny sticky notes plastered all over the office, random thoughts scratched out on everything from junk mail envelopes to cocktail napkins, magazine and newspaper clippings stacked randomly in a pile, and press releases and sell sheets tossed amidst the constantly growing sea of dead trees. Don’t even get me started on the saved slew of emails that serve as potential springboards, too.

I’ve been dying to write up these three products for some time now…two that fall under the category of “you’ve got to be fucking kidding me” and one that sits in the opposite corner, as a “get me some of those NOW” product. Mind you, none of these are received samples that I’m reviewing, just stuff that has caught my eye for better or worse (though I’d readily accept samples of the third product for scientific purposes of experimentation, of course). I know I’ll get some flack from a reader or two, who will undoubtedly tell me that they are kitchen-challenged, and that these products do offer a valuable service, but I call bullshit.

The first is Leifheit’s Perfect Roll Maker which I saw in a trade magazine, and I’m pretty sure hasn’t hit the US market just yet. Before I knock the thing, let me reiterate my annoyance with single-use gadgets—things like garlic presses, salad spinners, and pancake batter dispensers—that clutter a kitchen with their relative uselessness, and could easily be replaced by utile tools like a knife or a ladle. This “roll maker” twists your sushi, stuffed grape leaves, etc. into a roll so you don’t have to…umm…ROLL SOMETHING WITH YOUR HANDS. Those are free tools last time I checked, people. Have we really gotten that lazy that we need to blow our devalued dollars on a contraption that does what we can easily do? If you can’t be bothered to roll your own sushi, I’m not sure you have any business making sushi at home at all. Go order some from the take-out place in town, transfer it all to a nice sushi platter, crack open a beer and call it a day.

The second is up the same alley (Sloth Alley, I guess): Kuhn Rikon’s Egg Separator. For $16 you can once again buy a crappy piece of plastic that will collect more dust than it will egg whites, when you could easily USE YOUR HANDS. I get it…some people don’t like using the back-and-forth method with the broken egg shell because if you’re not good at making a clean crack in your eggs you’re likely to get tiny bits of egg shell along for the ride. I really do get it. But your hands are the perfect (and free) tool for this. Let the white slip through your fingers and the yolk will be left behind in your palm…presto. If it’s simply a matter of, “Eww, I don’t wanna get my hands full of egg snot” then I’m guessing you’re not yet a parent, because you simply can’t gross out a parent. Period.

The third has already been put on my wish list. You know, the go-to list for anytime a relative or friend (or forgetful husband) needs a gift suggestion. Yeah, that one. For every time you’ve asked for your drink to be served “on the rocks” there is now a way to truly get them on the rocks. Teroforma’s Whisky Stones are a set of nine cubes of soapstone, a soft stone that won’t scratch your glass and is known for retaining temperature for long periods. The stones don’t alter the flavor of the drink (the way some connoisseurs believe granite can) and they won’t water your drink down like ice will. After a few hours in the freezer, BAM, you’re ready to rock…huh, get it…rock. I kill myself.

{ 21 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Linsey June 7, 2010

I actually found that the egg snot on the hands is one of the best ways to do it, i also like the half egg shell into other half egg shell part … but saying that omgg $16 for a bit of plastic sheeeeesh!

The sushi roll wouldnt interest me as after trying sushi a couple of times I have decided i prefer my fish cooked the regular way or in a citric juice…

The third … no comment i dont drink.

Just curious though Katie – what is your wish list of things you would love to have … mine is one of those kick-ass food mixers (in red lol)

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2 Barbara Kiebel June 7, 2010

OK, first one I get…but the egg separator? Now you’re knocking my classic piece of Tupperware that I WON at a party most likely before kids…so let’s just say a LONG time ago. I use it all the time…but maybe it is that egg snot thing…or just prefer keeping my hands clean, but I love it. Would I buy one if I hadn’t won it; well now there is another question entirely!

The rocks…very cool indeed.

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3 Katie Pizzuto June 7, 2010

Well then what’s the difference, Barb? Why do you understand my gripe with the first but not the second? Is it really all about the snot? I guess it just irks me that people don’t interact with their food like they used to…it’s like “minimal intervention cooking” at this point. I don’t use a rolling pin for my pizza dough, I use my hands. I don’t use a scoop to form my meatballs, I use my hands…etc. Like any other activity you’re passionate about, it’s no fun unless you get a little dirty 🙂

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4 Elle June 7, 2010

Agreed–have no need for the first two. I was going to order the third as gifts last Christmas, but read reviews on Amazon–and wasn’t terribly impressed.

My salad spinner? Don’t even think of asking me to go without it. I use it all the time! Saves a ton of paper towels that I’d have otherwise used to dry my greens and herbs on.

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5 Elle June 7, 2010

I’d imagine everyone probably has a couple of kitchen gadgets they’re addicted to, and some they would never think of using.

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6 Heather June 7, 2010

LOVE my salad spinner for the same reasons as Elle. Plus it is NOT a single use item silly girl. It is also a PERFECT serving bowl for said salad. You can use it to dry home cut french fries and shredded potatoes (Line with paper towel or shamWOW for small shreds) – Great for flouring cut up chicken or pork or whatever, etc. etc… You just have to use your imagination.

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7 Katie Pizzuto June 7, 2010

@Elle, yeah I’d imagine that since one man’s junk is another man’s treasure, the same would be true in a kitchen.

@Elle and Heather…I love how this has devolved into mad support for a salad spinner when it was only mentioned in passing, LMFAO!

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8 Katie Pizzuto June 7, 2010

@Lin…you mean the Kitchen-Aid stand mixers, right? Let’s hope my vision of one sitting on your wedding presents table comes true, LOL!! As for me and my kitchen wish list, would an outdoor wood-burning oven be out of the question?! Add to that a real brick-lined barbecue pit with a rotisserie to spit-roast a pig and I’m good to go. I don’t dream small as you see.

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9 Linsey June 7, 2010

Thats the one – in this country it would be a Kenwood chef – but I have seen the red Kitchen Aid ones and fallen for it … if I could bring myself it would be on the wedding list – but its so expensive Im gonna save

When you get the BBQ pit can i come for the spit-roasting – love meat that just falls apart … ok now im drooling

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10 Coupe 60 June 8, 2010

Katie, please tell me that you at least use toilet paper and not your hands 🙂

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11 Coupe 60 June 8, 2010

Hey Dumbass…I don’t believe the company can actually come out and state what product #1 is really used to roll in a trade magazine…However check their full page ad in High Times Magazine..

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12 Coupe 60 June 8, 2010

I may have been out of line with the dumbass comment…

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13 Katie Pizzuto June 8, 2010

#1…yes, you were out of line…I demand a retraction….right now. 🙂

#2…see now, for some reason, if that’s what the first product was used for, I might see fit to give it praise!

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14 Elle June 9, 2010

Katie–an outdoor wood burning oven is on our short list of fun projects. When I say fun, I mean fun for me to watch my husband while he builds it, of course.

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15 Coupe 60 June 9, 2010

@elle, that is so funny that you mention that. My wife and I were discussing our next BBQ Grill to buy for our backyard, and the concept of the outdoor wood burning pizza oven came up…Only in our case, the project part of it would be me searching where I can buy one, as building is out of the question…

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16 Coupe 60 June 9, 2010

Katie is not a dumbass…

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17 Katie Pizzuto June 10, 2010

Once upon a time my dad had like eight gazillion bricks in the garage (much to my mother’s dismay) that he always “intended” to use to make a pit or such. They gathered a lot of dust those bricks. And to Lou’s point, I’d definitely buy a wood-burning oven cuz my hubby’s a lot like my dad. If we buy the materials to make it, that’s all I’ll have…materials 🙂

And thanks for the retraction.

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18 Don June 13, 2010

Save the Salad Spinners! That’s what I say! As far as product number three, I have heard about a road building project in your neighboring state of Pennsylvania, where the contractor was allowed to use soapstone for his aggregate (the roadway surface). Every time it rained people would slide all over the place…Seems soapstone is called that for a reason. It emits a slick substance on its surface when it gets wet. I have to believe this would change the flavor of my bourbon. Personally I either throw the bottle in the freezer for a bit, or I use just a couple of cubes. The residual water from the ice helps the drink open up a little bit too. Typically by the time I finish my drink is cold, and very little of the cube has melted! 🙂

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19 Coupe 60 June 14, 2010

This is a test of the “recent diatribes” feature….

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20 Coupe 60 June 14, 2010

Damn it – It works…It is the Franz Klammer of new features 😉

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21 John June 30, 2010

You are clearly missing the point of the first 2 items. They would be perfect for someone with arthritis, a handicap, or if they were a pirate. You try separating eggs with a hook. Arrrrrrr. Shiver me timbers and pass me another Spicy Tuna Roll.

The rocks are awesome, except for the fact that I like to chew ice after my drink is gone. I bet you only make that mistake once with those. 🙂

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