Monday, August 27, 2012

Things I'm Glad I Registered For: Kitchen Edition

Second and final installment of my obsession with kitchen gadgets. First installment here.

KitchenAid Artisan Stand Mixer

While I'll admit (since my husband does read this) that the KitchenAid received very little use our first couple years of marriage, it's been used quite frequently ever since. Am I aware that it's a status symbol that most 20-30 somethings always have on their registry? Yes. Was I willing to be a follower and totally jump on that bandwagon, even if I saw no real need at the time of our marriage? Totally.

Pinterest just gave me a new way to shred chicken (loathed job) using the paddle. Haven't tried it yet, but place warm, cooked chicken in the mixer, attach paddle, turn on to a 2-3 and watch it shred for you. Yessss.

KitchenAid Toaster Oven
We're those people who tossed our regular toaster and replaced it with this bad boy. I always loved the one we had growing up that seemed to make the best peanut butter toast. Now this is all we use for just about everything. It's great to heat/cook things for lunch without heating the whole house. Those cheap frozen pizzas conveniently fit perfectly in there, eggrolls, pulling some cookie dough out of the freezer to make 1 or 2 ice cream sandwiches without having to turn on the big oven... such a lovely thing.

Cuisinart 8-Cup Rice Cooker
I understand rice cookers aren't for everyone, but the Wilsons love ours. I use it at least 1-2 times/week. Without burning, it cooks up brown rice, white rice, basmati, jasmine, Indian rice (turmeric added without staining!), Spanish rice, couscous, quinoa... the possibilities are endless. Being a vegetarian, lots of these grains and seeds are part of my daily consumption and I simply hate monitoring the rice on the stove that will inevitably bubble over and create an awful mess. I've bought this for at least 3 people for their weddings (of course they registered for it) since receiving ours. If you own one or plan to buy, let me know and I have some tricks for making it easier to clean... because that is definitely a flaw of this machine.

Cuisinart Immersion Blender with Attachments
I rarely use the immersion blender part (though it's so great to blend up soups!), but I really love the mini food processor attachment! I use it often when chopping up lots of ingredients and especially to make my favorite peanut-lime sauce for pastas and chicken. I have a large food processor that my mom bought me at least 10 years ago that still works amazingly, but sometimes it's too large for a small job and has too many parts to clean. This is far easier to whip out and clean up.

Blendtec Total Blender Four Side
This should come as no surprise to anyone who reads since I talk about this a lot. I'm not kidding. If there were a fire, there would be some things I'd retrieve. All things Andrew, some Benjamin things, our external hard drive (with all photos), my new Le Creuset {more on that later!}, and this blender. We originally registered for the Breville blender at $199 and realized quickly that the stainless steel on the top and bottom didn't match (lame!), but that it was super expensive and made with plastic parts! This, my friends, has all steel parts and a lifetime warranty. My mom did just buy the Ninja and says it works great! I've also read wonderful reviews on it... so that's a nice consolation for not wanting to spend 1/4 of your mortgage on a blender. Hah.

Set of Crate & Barrel Glass Bowls
I use these bowls all. the. time., so they deserve a spot on the list. In the $20-$30 range in total, so nothing to break the bank and makes a great gift, I think! I also have a bunch of wood serving trays and bowls and salad bowls and appetizer plates from Crate & Barrel that we love among many other things. Just not the durability of our tableware set. Though we still love the looks and heartiness of it.

Crate & Barrel tongs
Maybe trivial, but these get used daily in our house. We have a small and a large.

There were a few flops that I would not purchase again, but the main one is something so many people have and register for. I don't understand why it was so poorly designed and sells so many! We love tea in our home and the tea kettle is used often. But this design has a huge flaw. The handle has a small rubber strip that is surrounded by metal! When heated, it is very hot and impossible to hold without burning yourself. Here it is... the tea kettle.
KitchenAid 2-Quart Porcelain Tea Kettle (we have the gray metallic... matches our KitchenAid mixer)
Perhaps a new beauty is in my future once our current one bites the dust (probably never).
That may or may not match my new dutch oven. omg.
Alright, so let's hear it. What is your absolute favorite thing in your kitchen?


Caroline said... [Reply to comment]

ditto everything about the kitchenAid Mixer - and I think I saw the same thing on shredding chicken and plan to try tonight when I make chicken enchiladas - will let you know how it goes because I HATE HATE HATE doing that. Plus it makes my hands all crampy and I feel like an d80 year old.

I LOVE our waffle maker. But probably just because I love waffles.

Marianne said... [Reply to comment]

I was an idiot and didn't register for the mixer. DUMB!

Our crock pot is by far the most used item in our kitchen. I make 3-4 dinners a week in it :-)

Amelia said... [Reply to comment]

We bought our mixer with gift cards from our wedding. I've been slacking lately but it's been well used.

I use our immersion blender every single day for my morning smoothie! Single serving buzzed up quick like. I use it for scrambled eggs, salsa, and who knows how many other things, I love it.

My step mom is Vietnamese and when I'd go visit my dad I'd eat rice for lunch and dinner, I loved it so much. So, when I moved out on my own the gift of my rice cooker and a 50 pound bag of rice was the best thing ever! The rice seriously got us through the lean end of teens years and I still use my rice cooker almost weekly 15 years later! Rice is still my comfort food.

sarah said... [Reply to comment]

My immersion blender just graduated to top of my favorites list because of how great it is for baby food. Purees in a snap. Owen loves it too.

and zomg le creuset dutch oven? swoon.

Ben and Katie said... [Reply to comment]

Love my kitchen aid but what i can shred chicken??
I went to shred some zuccini in my cusinart food processor (love it) but couldn't find the stupid makes it to watery in the kitchen aid so i ended up hand grating...grr!
everything here (except the amazing brand name stuff) is starting to fall apart after almost 5 years of use!
we are waiting until we buy a house...can you write kitchen crap into a home loan!?!

SG said... [Reply to comment]

Ditto on the fancy toaster oven (ours is also convection) - we use it for EVERYTHING. I also love our combo rice cooker/crockpot/pressure cooker. And the high quality knives - should have said that first :)

AlliFerg said... [Reply to comment]

A KitchenAid is so cliche for a registry but I heart ours too! I'm glad we got it AND I love the silver color. I'll never get sick of it.

You are going to need to do other areas of the house as well or maybe this is your first link up ;)

AlliFerg said... [Reply to comment]

A KitchenAid is so cliche for a registry but I heart ours too! I'm glad we got it AND I love the silver color. I'll never get sick of it.

You are going to need to do other areas of the house as well or maybe this is your first link up ;)