Monday 23 February 2015

Steamers Aren't a Girl's Best Friend

Location: Oxford, Oxford, UK
Published in the Feb/Mar edition of Vale Life Magazine

Several years ago, someone (naming no names) bought me the biggest Christmas present ever. It sat majestically under the Christmas tree, larger than any other gift, and I had absolutely no idea what it was. I was so very excited. I tried every means possible to work out what it was. I sniffed it. I felt every angle of it. I shook it. I still had no idea what it was.

On Christmas Day, I left that great big present to the very end, like the most desirable sweetie in the bag. When the time came to finally unwrap my huge gift, excitement levels were at an all time high. Gently, I slowly peeled back the wrapping paper, savouring the anticipation. Then suddenly the contents were revealed. A great, big, almost industrial sized, electric food steamer. Yes. Never have I been so disappointed.

It wasn’t that I wasn’t grateful, it was a thoughtful(ish) gift - I do like to cook after all. It was just that small (or rather large, in this case) kitchen appliances are not gifts - they are simply kitchen appliances. Functional. What became of the giant steamer? I used it once, then it was packed up never to see light of day again.

Having recently read an article about a new butter mill that will magically "transform your cold block of butter into beautiful spreadable ribbons" - can't you just use a butter dish and not put it in the fridge?! - it got me thinking about all those other pointless kitchen gadgets that have probably made their way to the back of a cupboard already, now the Christmas decorations are all packed away.

Spreadable butter for all! (Picture: Cooks Innovations)

Here are a few of my favourites…

Egg, banana or avocado slicers - really? You can't use cutlery? Unless you're eating them by the dozen, you probably don't need a specific tool to slice them up.

Fruit peelers - come on, you don't even need cutlery for this, use your fingers or just a regular peeler!

Twirling forks - love spaghetti? Too lazy to twirl your own fork? This gadget is definitely for you!

Steamers - less of a pointless gadget, but if you are going to buy one, make sure the person actually wants one. Or at the very least make sure they won't need to build an extension just to fit it in the house

So in case you are wondering what to buy for the lady in your life, here's a little tip - steer well clear of the kitchen appliances, foodie or not. May I please direct you to the jewellery store further down the road. And no, not the cheap one either. “Steamers and cubic zirconia are a girl’s best friend”, said no one ever.

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