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Favourite gadget – Chinese cleaver

2 Dec
A girl and her cleaver. A magical moment.

A girl and her cleaver. A magical moment.

Did I mention that it was my birthday? I did, didn’t I? Well, another of the great gifts I got was this great cleaver. A knife is a cook’s best friend and a good cleaver is brilliant for all your chopping and crushing needs. For many years I had a favourite cleaver, one that my mum bought from a highly entertaining street vendor as part of a complete set of kitchen knives, super-sharp and very cheap. The cleaver and I made friends immediately. Such a handy blade, with complete clearance for the knuckles. The edge perfect for chopping and the side if the cleaver perfect for crushing. But that, the cleaver of my youth, was, as I realised years later when I wrapped it in newspaper, stuck it in my hold luggage and imported it to Scotland, was really quite flimsy and insubstantial. I stopped using it, eventually, feeling let down that it didn’t measure up to my memory of it.

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Useful kitchen gadgets – garlic saucer

8 Sep
Garlic Saucer

Garlic Saucer

This gadget may prove a little challenging for you. I recently promised one of my co-authors one and ended up on a much longer quest than I had hoped as well-known kitchen shop in the USA where I originally bought it no longer stocked it!

But, do persevere, once you have used the garlic saucer (or ceramic garlic plate), you’ll never grunt and groan over ginger or garlic again, each are reduced quickly to a paste.

Does anyone know of a source in the UK? I’ve found some similar ones on Amazon, but the grid is not so regular and even.

Favourite gadget – runner bean slicer

31 Jul

First of an occasional series on favourite gadgets

Runner bean season is upon us! Fresh, local grown beans of often unfeasible size seem to taste all the better for having been sliced thinly and the strings removed.

Having tried many slicers, this one has pride of place in by cutlery draw – it’s made by Krisk (and I think, originally from Australia). Treat yourself, you’ll wonder how you ever did without it.

Runner Bean Slicer

Krisk runner bean slicer

What is your favourite gadget?