Over the years, one of the things I’ve learned about myself is that I am not a kitchen minimalist. I like useful tools, sturdy knives that hold their edge, and gadgets that make cooking and preserving projects faster. If it works well and serves a role in my regular culinary life, I will make room for it in my overstuffed (but well-stocked) kitchen.
This is why my assortment of kitchen gear includes a specialized yogurt strainer (for homemade Greek yogurt), a sweet little pan designed specifically for making caramel sauce, and Hamilton Beach’s SaladXpress. The SaladXpress is the newest tool to enter my kitchen and I’ve found that even though I’m outfitted with a food processor and a number of slicers, peelers, and graters, I’m happy to make room for it.
What I like about it is that it has a smaller footprint than a traditional food processor, dispenses right into your mixing bowl or saute pan, and cleans up more quickly than any food processor I’ve ever used. I’m totally smitten by the crinkle cut blade, because it means that I can give my pickles a classic wavy edge.
Thanks to a spur of the moment apple chip making project at my canning workshop last weekend (one of the class participants just happened to have a dehydrator in her car), I am currently on something of dehydrating kick. When I got home from the workshop, I pulled out the SaladXpress and my trusty Nesco and got down to work. I like to toss the sliced apples with a little cinnamon, lemon juice, and freshly grated ginger before laying them out on the trays.
Another thing that the SaladXpress does very well is the shredding of potatoes and other root vegetables for latkes and fritters. I find that it creates a flat, wide shred that feels closer to the one you get when you hand grate. I prefer it to the thicker, narrower piece that food processors typically produce (though I know that there are multiple schools of thought one the best way to prep potatoes for latkes).
- Leave a comment on this post and tell me about a gadget or tool that you make room for in your kitchen. Whether it’s the spaetzle maker that you use twice a year or the ableskiver pan that you know you’ll make good use of someday, I want to hear about it.
- Comments will close at 11:59 pm east coast time on Saturday, November 9, 2013. Winners will be chosen at random (using random.org) and will be posted on Sunday, November 10, 2013.
- Giveaway is open to US residents.
- One comment per person, please. Entries must be left on the blog, I cannot accept submissions via email or social media.