Archive for June 2009

Everybody loves kitchen gadgets, but is it possible to love them a little too much? While it’s a great idea to get yourself some inexpensive counter top toys that make cooking easier, when you’ve, say, spent four figures on something that cooks exactly one kind of dish, your kitchen-gadget enthusiasm may have crossed over into obsession. Either that, or you’re executive chef at Tao.

Kitchen porn: 8 of the most outrageous food gadgets money can buy

Whether you’re a gourmet chef or just like to dabble in the kitchen, you’ll be amazed at just how ridiculous something as simple as a corkscrew can get. We found eight of the most over-the-top kitchen tools out there, ranging from $50 to $60,000. Some are pretty awesome if you can afford them; others are simply ridiculous. Follow the jump to check them out.


1. All-Clad Asparagus Pot


WHAT IT IS When it comes to All-Clad pots, $50 isn’t really a bad price — the company makes some of the nicest pans around. It’s the perfect size for asparagus, but can’t cook anything else — it’s too skinny for pasta and may even be too skinny for some of the burners on your range.

WHY WE DON’T HAVE IT Unless you’re extraordinarily wealthy or have some kind of obsession with asparagus, you’ll feel guilty for making room for this pot in your kitchen.

saltpepper.jpg 2. Peugeot Electric Salt & Pepper Mills

PRICE $240 for both

WHAT IT IS Grinding your own salt and pepper can get tedious, and that’s when these electrical light-up gizmos step in to do it for you. At least the $240 buys you the twelve AAA batteries it takes to run these mills, plus two spare light bulbs. In online reviews, some happy customers report that these liven up any dinner party. We think they should throw better dinner parties.

WHY WE DON’T HAVE IT We’d rather save $200 bucks and the landfills with some servacable wrist-powered mills.

expensivetoaster.jpg 3. Dualit Four-Slice Toaster

PRICE $320

WHAT IT IS It’s a nice shiny toaster that will heat up four — count ’em! — slices of bread. The removable crumb tray and an adjustable rear foot give it more flexibility than most models, though the slots aren’t wide enough to hold bagels.

WHY WE DON’T HAVE IT We know that nice appliances can come at a premium, and that not everyone wants the ugly-but-serviceable $10 model. But for this price, we’d expect a toaster that prints the Mona Lisa or at least some kind of iconic symbol.

warming drawer.jpg 4. Viking Warming Drawer

PRICE $1,809

WHAT IT IS A drawer that keeps your food warm. Just choose a temperature, and food that’s done will stay warm while the roast is still cooking in the oven.

WHY WE DON’T HAVE IT We understand the appeal here — there are lots of ways a warming drawer could be useful, and some ovens come with them. But we’re not about to spend two grand for a stand-alone drawer that’s basically doing the job of a $45 hot plate.

espressoexpensive.jpg 5. Jura-Capressa Impressa Z6 Espresso Maker

PRICE $3,299

WHAT IT IS This machine will make you some very nice, very customized cappuccinos and lattes that will beat a local barista’s espresso any day of the week. The “luxury espresso center” can remember the drink preferences of several different people, and lets you choose between five coffee strengths and three temperatures. And it’s fully automated— from when it starts by grinding the beans to when it cleans up after itself after it’s done.

WHY WE DON’T HAVE IT This machine is seriously impressive, but for the same price you could go to Europe several times to sip espresso on a piazza in Italy.

s-g_large.jpg 6. Kalamazoo Sculpture Grill

PRICE $6,495

WHAT IT IS It’s a grill! It’s a sculpture! You can even get it fitted with a #1 Dad custom cooking surface. And according to Kalamazoo, it “cooks as great as it looks.”

WHY WE DON’T HAVE IT The grill has a solid, if wavy appearance. We like it, but it’s no more a sculpture than is the kidney bean-shaped in-ground swimming pool you’d probably buy to go with it.

turbochef.jpg 7. TurboChef Double Wall Speedcook Oven

PRICE $7,895

WHAT IT IS Two ovens for the price of 10! Actually, the selling point of this TurboChef is its top oven, which purports to cook food 15 times faster than a normal oven. The company claims that the speed oven will cook a 12-pound turkey in just 42 minutes by using a patented combination of hot air and microwave technology. The bottom oven is a normal, high-quality convection oven.

WHY WE DON’T HAVE IT If it’s in your price range, the TurboChef does seem like it would be awesome to have around. Consumer Reports says it zapped through a frozen pizza in four minutes instead of 23. But the magazine also complains that chickens and turkeys tended to be cooked unevenly, so it sounds like that magic bullet — speed-cooking technology — may not be all there yet.

expensive-corkscrew.jpg 8. Sveid Corkscrew

PRICE $66,225

WHAT IT IS Why, the world’s most expensive corkscrew, of course. While it’s not solid gold or platinum, the fingertip lever — the bit you have to touch the most — comes standard in 18K gold.

WHY WE DON’T HAVE IT Given the country’s angry, anti-executive bonus sentiment right now, if we owned one of these, we’d probably not letting anyone know about it. And what, exactly, is the point of spending $60K on a corkscrew if you can’t use it openly to dip into your even more expensive wine collection?


Check out this list of the 7 shortest-lived grocery store flops.

Thousands of new food products are introduced to American grocery shoppers every year, which makes us wonder: Which items are so wild that they’ve been removed from shelves permanently? We examined some of the biggest food flops over the last 40+ years. Some of the items lasted only a few weeks, while others were available for a few years, but they all have one thing in common: We guarantee you can’t find these items at a grocery store near you.

Cocaine energy drink

First introduced in 2006, Cocaine energy drink contained three and a half times the amount of caffeine in Red Bull and 750 milligrams of taurine, a synthetic version of an acid found in the lower intestines of animals. The product was eventually pulled from grocery shelves after the FDA decided it was illegally being marketing as “an alternative to street drugs.” Photo: Redux Beverages

Various flavors of Jell-O

Many different flavors of this well-known gelatin product have come and gone, but Jell-O should’ve known that some of them just weren’t meant to be. In the 1960s, savory flavors like celery, Italian salad, mixed vegetable and seasoned tomato were introduced in an attempt to make vegetable salad gelatin molds popular. The trend never caught on and the non-sweet flavors were later discontinued. Photo: Paula K. Wirth

Coors Rocky Mountain Sparkling Water

In 1990, the Coors Brewing Company introduced its one and only bottled water product to the masses. What seemed like a natural fit—after all, the company’s slogan is “Brewed with Pure Rocky Mountain Spring Water”—didn’t quite work out since these non-alcoholic six-packs didn’t stay on the market for long. Photo: Molson Coors Brewing Company

Orbitz soft drink

Introduced in 1996, this product launch was fast-tracked off the shelves due to poor sales. Not to be confused with the travel website, this non-carbonated drink was made by the Clearly Canadian Beverage Corporation and contained tiny edible balls floating in a fruit-flavored beverage. Touted as a “texturally enhanced alternative beverage,” the orbs of gellan gum are what ultimately steered consumers away from the product. Photo: Renee Waters

EZ Squirt ketchup

Beginning in 2000, Heinz introduced EZ Squirt—the first non-red ketchup for kids. The colors included Blastin’ Green, Funky Purple, Stellar Blue and Mystery Color. At first, the products were a big hit with the youngsters, but by 2006 all of the colors were discontinued. Photo: Heinz

Funky Fries

Ore-Ida’s Funky Fries only lasted for one year, from 2002-2003, due to poor sales and a terrible response from consumers. The fries, which included off-the-wall variations including chocolate-flavored, cinnamon-flavored and blue-colored fries, were intended to be kid-oriented. However, as it turned out, children just weren’t that crazy about the flavors. Photo: Heinz

Doritos 3D

These three-dimensional corn puffs came in intense flavors such as Jalapeno Cheddar, Texas Paprika and Zesty Ranch. We don’t know if the super-bold tastes were a little too hot to handle or if the geometric shape was too difficult to swallow (literally), but this snack food didn’t last long after being introduced in early 2000. Photo: Frito-Lay

Taken from a post by Olivia Putnal Posted April 23, 2009 from

We are starting a new segment called Traveler’s Love on great food from the world over. So in case you drop into one of the destinations, you know what to eat. So today we will cover London and its famous “Fish n Chips”

Fish and chips (sometimes written “fish ‘n’ chips”) is a popular take-away food which originated in the United Kingdom. It consists of deep-fried fish (traditionally cod, haddock or flounder) in batter or breadcrumbs with deep-fried chipped (slab-cut) potatoes.

Popular tradition associates the dish with the United Kingdom; and fish and chips remains very popular in the United Kingdom and in areas colonised by people from the UK in the 19th century, such as Australia, New Zealand and parts of North America.

The Chips

American-style “french fries” typically have a slimmer shape than their British counterpart chips; thicker “fries” sometimes appear on US menus as “steak fries”. Thicker slabs of potato result in a lower fat content per portion than with French fries. Cooking fat penetrates a relatively shallow depth into the potato during cooking, thus the surface area reflects the fat content proportionally. Thick chips have a smaller surface area per unit weight than French fries and thus absorb less oil per weight of potato. Chips also require a somewhat longer cooking time than fries.

The Fish

In Britain, haddock and cod appear most commonly as the fish used for fish and chips, but vendors also sell many other kinds of fish, especially other white fish, such as pollock or coley; plaice; skate; and huss or rock salmon (a term covering several species of now endangered dogfish and similar fish). In some areas of southwestern and northern England, and throughout the vast majority of Scotland, haddock predominates. Indeed, in one part of West Yorkshire, the area between Bradford, Halifax and Keighley known as the “Haddock Triangle”, very few shops offer cod on their menu. In Grimsby and the surrounding area, Haddock is preferred so much that the very word Cod is virtually swearing. In Northern Ireland, cod, plaice or whiting appear most commonly in “fish suppers”. Suppliers in Devon and Cornwall regularly offer pollock and coley as cheap alternatives to haddock due to their regular availability in a common catch. As a cheap, nutritious, savoury and common alternative to a whole piece of fish, fish-and-chips shops around the UK supply small battered rissoles of compressed cod roe.

The Accompaniments

In the United Kingdom, free salt and vinegar is traditionally sprinkled over fish and chips at the time it is served. Suppliers may use malt vinegar or onion vinegar (the vinegar used for pickling onions). A cheaper product called “non-brewed condiment” (actually a solution of acetic acid in water with caramel colour) substitutes for genuine malt vinegar in many fish-and-chip shops.

Where to get one

In the United Kingdom and in Australia and North America fish-and-chips usually sell through independent restaurants and take-aways. Outlets range from small affairs to chain restaurants. In the United Kingdom, punning names for the shops, such as “The Batter Plaice”, “Assault and Battery”, “The Codfather”, “Sir Crickets Fish n’ Chips” and “The Frying Scotsman” often occur. SO next time you are in the Land of “Propah English” do get one for yourself

Bon Apetite- Team Menublob

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