03 January 2011

Granny's Gadgets #1

I have the enviable good fortune to have a mother-in-law that I like, enjoy the company of, and have gotten some very interesting kitchen gadgets from!  People always gave her kitchen gadgets for presents.  For example, her husband presented her with an electric carving knife for Christmas one year.  Boxes and boxes of gadgets.   She was The Gadget Lady.

When she moved from my husband's childhood home... the family home for 40 years... and into a small apartment living situation where meals would be provided, she needed to find some sucker budding Stay At Home Mom upon whom to dump bestow this fabby collection of oh-so-useful items... must-haves for any SAHM worth her salt, to be sure ;-)

Her daughters chuckled as I excitedly carted off truly box after box of the weird, the wondrous, the useless, the useFUL...  They had grown up in the Land of Abundance where kitchen gadgets are concerned.  A specific tool for each and every cooking-related task.  They knew better than to accumulate drawer upon drawer of miscellany when really just a good knife, a spoon and a decent spatula are probably ALL anyone really NEEDS.  I, on the other hand, was kitchen-ignorant and -deprived.  At that stage in my culinary development, I could open a mean can, make a "perfect" (according to one of my stepdaughters) PB&J, and wash an apple for you nice a clean.  That was pretty much IT.  The thought of all these little doo-dads that would make cooking and prepping possible was thrilling.  I could learn to cook if I had these necessary items.

 So now I have all these .... things.

Many most of them I have never used.  Some of them I have NO IDEA what they are!  Now that I am trying to learn to cook, I have decided to share them with you!  Isn't that special?  Once a week I will pick one of the items from the boxes.  I will research what it is (if I don't know... or maybe make up what it is if I can't find out for sure), post a picture of the item IN USE(!), and review its utility.

Super cool, right?

Welcome to the first installment of the new Monday Feature:


First up is this circular metal masher thing with white plastic handle.  It is VERY heavy.  I don't know what it is called and couldn't find out what its true use is, but it was great at mashing up the boiled turkey carcass and veggies in an attempt to extract every bit of goodness while making my turkey stock.

Mmmmmmmm... looks yummy.....

The review:  This item was very USEFUL.  Its smashing/extricating abilities were more than sufficient and its ease-of-use was .... well... super easy.  I think the heaviness helped ;-)  And the fact that it was extremely easy to clean is certainly an added bonus!  I'm glad I finally used it and will use it again... someday.  This is an item I would recommend to anyone who frequently makes chicken or turkey stock.  (My husband thinks it is for flattening piecrust... but what does he know?  Although, you could probably use it for that... or as a paperweight... or to hold open your cookbook... or as a doorstop... see?  it's very useful AND use-able).  The only 'con' regarding this item is that I have never ever seen one like it and haven't the foggiest where YOU could get one!  But you could probably use a clean, flat rock to perform all of the same functions.


  1. this made me laugh! So funny! I can't say that I'm going to sign up for this gadget but it made me smile. :) Love that you have a cloffice! What a great idea...someday if I ever get a bigger house. Until then my office is wherever I take my laptop. :) I'm jealous of your neat drawers and closet.

  2. oh, and I secretly want 4 kids but trying to forget about it because my husband is done! I don't want to be one of those nags that keeps talking about something that may or may not be good for our life. So I'm happy with my 3 but 4 seems great too!

  3. Your post was fantastic. Perhaps this will assist you in your research...

    I love the idea...we have a game that shows up at Christmas from time to time, "Guess the Gadget". Someone gets a kitchen gadget for someone, takes all the labels off, and sticks it in a stocking. Then the recipient has to see if they can come up with what it is, and how to use it.

  4. You make me smile with each post! I found something in my kitchen gadgetry and had no clue what it was. Turns out it was a cherry pitter. I got real familiar with it when I agreed to help a friend can 65 lbs. of cherries. I had no idea what I was getting into, it was my first experience with canning, but I actually loved it, especially when it was over - kind of like running..

  5. HAHA!! That is awesome that you like your MIL! I think I need to try your perfect pb and j. Sounds delicious. I need a masher thingee....I am going to have to research this ha!! Thank you for your comments on my blog, they always make me happy. About the coach...I do have one:) He is owner of the running store that sponsors me. I need to include more tips etc from him in the blog...that is my new goal:) Hope you are having an amazing day!

  6. Whoo Hoo!! I finally got my buns over here to find out what on earth XLMIC means :) I've never claimed to be the sharpest tool in the shed. So, I keep reading your comments on other blogs I follow and think you're so much fun!

    And here I come to your blog, and find more witty goodness to read!! LOVE IT! So there I am, your newest blog follower :)

    Love your MIL's old kitchen gadgets. My MIL is a kitchen gadget queen, but I don't care for her much, so I wouldn't take her crap for all the pasta in Italy (and being Italian, and loving FOOD, that says A LOT!)

    Thanks for the laughs, and hope we can be blog buddies!!


  7. BAAAHH! I got a great laugh out of this one. Hilarious! You are one witty lady and I just love your posts! Can't wait to see gadget #2!!

    BTW-I am all bilingual and totally know what mierda means-ha!

  8. So awesome! I am anxiously awaiting the next installment!

  9. So, hey, NattyBumpo is a way better detective than I am! He found out that it IS a MEAT POUNDER! Cool. I am set the next time I need to pound some meat. That sounds a little "locker room", doesn't it?


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