I like my cutting boards that can be sterilized in a microwave

I bought this 3-pack of Enviroboard Microwavable Sterilization Antibacterial Cutting Board in 2015 for $35. They're on sale now for $24. Read the rest

My favorite knife sharpener

I've tried a few different kitchen knife sharpeners (including this Cook's Illustrated recommended sharpener) and my favorite is the KitchenIQ Edge Grip 2 Stage Knife Sharpener. It's only $6 on Amazon, but it has held up splendidly since I bought it in early 2015. It's got a corner-shaped groove that fits into a kitchen counter edge, which prevents slipping. It gives my favorite cheap kitchen knife (the $12 Winco Acero 8-inch chef's knife) a keen edge. I use the coarse sharpening groove (I can see tiny shards of metal coming off the knife) if the fine groove isn't doing the trick.

Here's a demonstration of sharpener:

I also use a sharpening steel to keep the knife edge straight every time I'm about to cut food: Read the rest

World's best jar lid opener

The reason it's hard to open jar lids is because the vacuum seal is pulling the lid tightly against the jar. Once in a while, the vacuum seal is so strong that I can't open it. That's when I grab my Jarkey, a $6 plastic lever that effortlessly breaks the seal, making it easy to open. I always try to open jars with my bare hands, then use the Jarkey after I strain my wrist. My wife goes straight for the Jarkey, because she's smarter than I am. Read the rest

One of our favorite kitchen items: restaurant taco holders

American Metalcraft makes restaurant equipment, but you can buy these all-metal taco holders for home use on Amazon. The have a model that holds 2 tacos, and another that holds 3. We use them at least once a week, and love them. Who on earth wants a taco shell sitting on its side, disgorging its contents on the plate? Not me. Read the rest

Grease splatter screen for frying pans

I used my grease splatter screen last night while frying tomatoes and garlic in oil. The food was sizzling and popping, but the screen kept my shirt, range, and countertop splatter-free. This screen also comes with a couple of pan scrapers as a free bonus. Available from Amazon for $12. Read the rest

I'm cooking everything I can think of in my Fagor multicooker

I got the Fagor Stainless-Steel 3-in-1 6-Quart Multi-Cooker ($95 on Amazon) in 2013 and I use it 3-4 times a week. It's a combo pressure cooker/rice cooker/slow cooker. I don't use the slow cooker often, but I use the rice cooker and pressure cooker all the time. It makes fantastic chicken broth from a carcass in 20 minutes.

Unlike most pressure cookers it has an electric browning feature, which lets you brown beef, fish, or chicken right in the pot before you pressure cook it, greatly improving the flavor.

The throw-everything-in-the-pot-and-push-a-button approach has broadened my cooking horizons. I’ve made rib roast in the slow cooker that had my in-laws coming back for thirds. I’ve made mouth-watering chicken stuffed with sun-dried tomato pesto, basil and goat cheese in a matter of minutes. I’ve made salmon with spinach and lemon sauce, fennel and Italian sausage, creamy risotto, and spicy Bolognese sauce. Thanks to an online army of pressure-cooker devotees, I’ll never run out of recipes.

The only negative thing about the Fagor is that the user interface doesn’t make it clear when it is cooking. A couple of times I’ve set the timer and forgotten to press the start button, only to find out twenty minutes later that it never started. I’ve learned not to do that. Read the rest

Kitchen tongs that close with a little tab

I like these stainless steel tongs because you can lock them closed by pulling on a small metal tab. That makes them easy to store and put in a dishwasher. I bought the set of two (9-inches and 12-inches) for $9 on Amazon. It includes a silicon mat that can be used as a drip mat or hot-pot insulator. Read the rest

My favorite garlic crusher

I use this rocker garlic crusher several times a week. To use it, you just put a peeled clove of garlic under the crusher and rock the crusher over it a few times. It will smash the garlic through the holes, which you can then add to your food or skillet. When you are done, you can rub the stainless steel rocker underwater and "wash" your hands to remove the garlic smell from your skin. I like using this a lot more than a traditional garlic press, which seems to "juice" garlic more than mince it, as this rocker does. It's $15 on Amazon and will last forever. Here's a cheaper version (which I have not tried): Read the rest

Great set of dish towels on sale

I bought this set of 13 kitchen towels on Amazon in July. They've held up well, and do a good job of absorbing water. At $15 for 13 towels, they are not expensive to replace, but I haven't even started to think about getting a new set. Read the rest

Good, inexpensive silicone kitchen sink strainer

I like almost everything OXO makes. This silicone kitchen sink strainer ($8) was a welcome replacement for the wire mesh one we had, because some of the wires had broken. Those little protruding wires hurt when they poke your finger. The OXO strainer is made of soft silicone and that won't hurt you. To clean the collect food debris, just pop the cup inside out in the trash. One reviewer on Amazon said it is still in good condition after four years of use.

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Good deal on Cuisinart 15-piece stainless steel knife set

I bought this knife set in May 2014 for $80 and use it many times a day. It's held up well and will last many more years. The knives are one-piece, with hollow steel handles. It comes with kitchen shears, a honer, and a heavy duty block. Right now Amazon is selling it for $46, which is a great deal. Also, after trying many sharpeners, this one is my favorite. Read the rest

Good deal on the FryDaddy electric deep fryer

I paid $22 for my FryDaddy electric deep fryer, but it's on sale on Amazon for $17 (free Prime shipping) right now. This thing is awesome -- I use it a couple of times a week to fry sweet potato, butternut squash, and Brussels sprouts chips. (Here's the coconut oil I use with it.)

Lately I've been frying very thinly cut slices of butternut squash. It's a bit tricky, because for five minutes it doesn't look like anything is happening, then suddenly the slices begin to brown, and about a minute later, they start to burn. There's a 30-second window where they are perfectly browned and on the edge of being crispy and chewy. With a little salt, they are one of the tastiest things I've ever eaten. I'll shoot a video soon.

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Adjustable thickness rolling pin for perfect crusts and pasta

I bought this adjustable thickness rolling pin for my mother last year and she told me it is excellent. I just bought one for our home, too. It's a long wooden rolling pin with removable discs of different diameters so you can make dough 1/16, 1/6, 1/4, or 3/8-inch thick. Or don't use any rings and roll bareback. It's $16 on Amazon.

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Foldable step stool for $11

I bought this foldable step stool in January and we use it a few times a week to get out of reach stuff in the kitchen. It's 11 inches high, and is only 1.5 inches thick when folded up. It has replaced a non-folding plastic step stool that we'd kept in on the floor in the closet. It's on sale at Amazon for $11. Read the rest

The genius of W.R. Case & Sons’ Amber Bone “Hobo Knife”

These hobo knives have always bugged me, because how are you supposed to cut a hobo steak with one when the knife and fork are attached? Well, the W.R. Case & Sons’ Amber Bone “Hobo Knife” ($85) handle splits apart into a separate knife, fork, and spoon. Amazing! The video shows how it works. Read the rest

Flatware for germophobes

Dawoochen makes a line of flatware, called Head Up, for people who don't want the business end of their forks, knives, and spoons from touching the microbes teeming on the dinner table.

The Dawoochen Head up flat ware set is an innovative and hygienic product designed to keep the part that goes into your mouth free from touching the surface and this can perfectly prevent various bacteria and dust on the dining tablet from getting into the mouth through table ware.

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Is your Eierschalensollbruchstellenverursacher as nifty as this one?

This is a boiled egg shell cracker. It works like a charm every other time you use it.

[via] Read the rest

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