Working in the kitchen is like any other pastime, you need the right tools for the job. Fortunately for lovers of gadgets, there is an endless array of tools to facilitate any kitchen task. However this can be an expensive hobby, so it’s a good idea to conduct some research to work out which kitchen gadgets are really worth investing in.
Traditional Kitchen Gadgets
When something has been consistently used for a long time, it can be said to have proved its worth. Nonetheless not all kitchen gadgets suit every chef – does a vegetarian really need a meat tenderiser? However, no kitchen would be complete without the following simple and inexpensive basics: a tin opener, vegetable peeler, spatula, box grater, chopping board, colander, potato masher, knife set, mixing spoons, mixing bowls, pestle and mortar, oven gloves, a citrus reamer and a whisk. A set of mechanical scales is less accurate than the digital alternative but more reliable. After this, you start getting into the more expensive realms of pots and pans, baking tins and trays and electrical items.
Modern Kitchen Gadgets
One of the newer and more original kitchen gadgets on the market is a sushi maker. Sushi bought in shops is incredibly neat and well-dressed. While it’s great fun to make at home, not everyone has the nimble fingers necessary to achieve the same chic result you find in the shop-bought product. It is used to make ‘maki’, which are small rolls of sushi rice and nori seaweed around a selection of fillings. The maki roll is traditionally made using a bamboo mat to form the rolls, but the sushi maker forms and presses the rolls for you.
To make 40 maki:
- 250g sushi rice
- 55ml mirin (a Japanese sweetened sake or rice wine)
- 340g sashimi tuna, sliced into long thin strips
- 5 nori seaweed sushi sheets
- 1 cucumber, sliced into 5 long pieces
- 5 spring onions
- 2 teaspoons wasabi paste
Rinse the rice well under cold water, then drain and place in a lidded saucepan. Add a pint of water and bring to the boil. Simmer for 20-30 minutes or until most of the water has been absorbed, then put the saucepan aside with the lid on for 10 minutes.
Tip the rice into a large tray and trickle over the mirin and stir gently into the rice. Leave the rice to reach room temperature, then use your sushi maker to form maki rolls filled with the tuna, cucumber, spring onion and wasabi paste. Serve with light soy sauce and some slices of pickled ginger.