7 Trendy Kitchen Tools You Don't Actually Need
Why spend 10 bucks and clutter your kitchen with these one-trick ponies, when you can use a more versatile tool to do the same thing? Here are the latest gadgets you may want to skip.
If you happen to own a metal pastry tip, it makes an excellent cherry pitter. If not, push a sturdy straw or chopstick through the center of the fruit to poke pits out the other side.
By Nicole Cherie Jones
All it takes is a sharp paring knife to lop off the green stems. Rather than slicing flat across the strawberry top and wasting precious fruit flesh, angle your knife at 45 degrees into the fruit and rotate in a circular fashion around the stem until the core releases.
As any good cook knows, sometimes your hands are the best tool. Case in point: separating egg yolks from whites. Gently crack an egg on the counter and carefully empty into your hand (palm up, fingers loosely curled like you’re holding a round object) so that the yolk is cradled in your palm and the egg whites stream through your fingers. No jagged edges means no chance that the yolk will be broken and mess up your recipe.
A sharp chef's knife will make quick work of shearing off corn kernels. To make it even easier, use the center of a Bundt or angel-food cake pan to steady the cob as the corn falls into the round part of the pan.
Remember when we mentioned that your hands were an awesome kitchen tool? Stripping herbs falls firmly into this category. Grip the bottom of a stem with one hand and, using your other hand, pinch the bottom of the stem (just above where you are holding it) with your thumb and forefinger; keeping your fingers pinched together, run them up the length of the stem, which will pull all the leaves off in one quick stripping motion. Voila.
Egg Poaching Cups
A fine-mesh strainer — not a silicone cup — is the secret to wrangling an egg in water for a perfect poached egg that oozes gooey, delicious yolk. Gently crack your egg into the sieve, allow excess egg white to drain out, then lower into almost-simmering water. Once the egg is submerged and starts setting, use a spoon to loosen it from the mesh and continue cooking until done (about 3 to 5 minutes); lift and serve.
Salad Dressing Emulsifier
All you have to do is shake hard for a few minutes and your vinaigrette will emulsify, we promise. Feel free to use anything with a tight-fitting lid — a canning jar, plastic container, etc.