If you live or ever lived in a high-rise, depending on house rules, likely at one time or another you’ve scored freebee household stuff the neighbors moving in or out were getting rid of, where they’ll leave them by the elevator or in the lobby for whoever wants it. In our case, it’s often barely used or new stuff, with some for obvious reasons, as in, why would they use it? Would you?
Case in point this here Acrylic Bread Slicer. First of all, you can tell by the box age and design (and the really worn out acid-based price label not seen) this must have been one of them “As Seen on TV” products from the 70’s or 80’s. And here it was probably sitting in the owners storage closet over 3 decades having never been opened.
I must note, I normally wouldn’t take something like this, as I’m trying to get more unused stuff OUT of my place, not in, and “unitasker” kitchen gadgets such as this really have no place in my very limited living space.
Yet I looked at the Bread Slicer and after about to brushing it off, I then looked at it again and thought, “Hmmm? A bread slicer? Are they for real? They actually went from concept to patent, design, mass-production and marketing this?” Then thinking, “You know what? this could make for an interesting discussion piece on The Tasty Island!”
So I brought it home, took it out of the then-unopened box and analyzed it, thinking what else I could do with an Acrlylic Bread Slicer besides slice bread. Because if an Acrylic Bread Slicer is going to take up 1/4-cubic foot of precious cabinet space in my kitchen (I measured the box), it better well as hell do more than just slice bread evenly, gunfunnit!
Let’s see what Fox Run Craftsmen (a French Company, no surprise), the manufacturers of this product say it’s good for:
ACRYLIC BREAD SLICER
• Lets you cut uniform (1/2″ thick) slices every time
• Ideal for slicing homemade bread
And that’s about it for food. Just slicing bread, as meats, vegetables, fruits, cheese and even SPAM have their own slicing ‘n dicing proprietary kitchen gadgets that you’re supposed get for each particular task.
I suppose looking at again, while not for food, I could make a pretty cool looking clear “glass” cage for my pet “747” Cockaroach. But then if I do that, I’d never be able to use it for food preparation again.
Then how about this!…
Ah yes, that’s it! An Acrylic Mail and File Sorter/Micro Cutting Board/Bread Slicer! See, now instead of sitting in MY kitchen cabinet for the next 30 years taking up 1/4-cubic foot of wasted space as a lowly bread slicer, I’m making use of it actively in my home office as a paperwork organizer, also being able to use it as a chopping board for the green onions I add to the nama ramen noodles that I eat frequently at my workstation, while also being right there for the very rare occasion where I’ll need to turn a whole loaf of fresh-baked bread into perfect 1/2″ slices myself. “Hey Pomai, you wouldn’t happen to have a bread slicer would you?” “Well yes I do. It’s right here on my desk.” Hey, well wadda’ ya’ know? This one’s a keeper!
Obviously for sanitary and practical reasons that wouldn’t work. Yet all kidding aside, I wouldn’t doubt a patent similar to this idea has come across an attorney’s desk at some time or another. It’s gotta’, as it would be the “Swiss Knife” of Acrylic Bread Slicers, a.k.a. the “Bread Slice-O-Matic 3000!
Next up, well it’s systematic. It’s hyyyyyy-dromatic. Well it’s a Tortilla Fryer! “Go Tortilla Fryer, you’re burning up the nacho chips – go salsa, a go go salsa – go Tortilla Fryer the shell is about to split”…
So what else can we do with a Tortilla Fryer basket besides making fried tortilla bowls? …
I know! Despicable Me Katsu!…
Seriously though, I’ll try making a fried Lumpia Bowl and a fried Wonton Bowl, filling the fried Lumpia Bowl filled with fried bananas smothered with Biscoff Spread, and filling the Wonton Bowl with Chinese Stir Fry. Whooh!
Another kitchen gadget these folks who had just moved out of our building left for the taking was a brand new Presto TaterTwister…
While I still can’t think what the heck else I could do with this “TaterTwister” besides what it was designed for, I took it anyway, thinking this might actually make for some really interesting creations to feature on this blog. Oh like say Okinawan Sweet Potato Curly Fries. Or perhaps something curly that involves Biscoff Cookie Butter! We’ll see. If I don’t get around to that in a few months, it’s out of here and heading back to the free-for-all bench by the elevator.
While everyone’s seen the millions of infomercials and mail catalogs hawking every kitchen gadget under the rangehood and the sun, I’m so not biting for it.
All I need and use regularly at home to cook a good meal is a sharp chef’s knife, a solid cutting board, and good set of cookware & cooking utensils, plus a hot stove and oven, and I’m good to go. Other than that and other basic tools of the kitchen, here’s what I have as far as kitchen gadgets:
• Benriner Japanese Mandoline (for cutting cabbage really fine)
• Cuisinart Food Processor (with blender attachment; hardly ever used lately)
• Cuisinart Convection Toaster Oven (I’ve made oven-roasted Kalua Pig in this several times very successfully!)
• Electric Hand Mixer (used mostly for whipping cream cheese for dips)
• Electric Knife (GREAT to have for carving turkey and prime rib!)
• Salad Spinner (for removing water from lettuce and chinese cabbages)
• Electric Coffee Maker (the old fashioned ‘kine, not the fancy Keurig)
• Pressure Cooker (the best thing I’ve learned about since Cookie Butter & Biscoff)
• Rice Cooker (10 cup model, which is WAY too big for my home)
• Weber Grill (at mom’s place; used for both smoking and grilling)
I used to have an Immersion Blender, them “motorboat” hand blenders you stick in the cup, but got rid of it, as it was gimicky and not worth the clean-up, which is why in general I avoid using gadgets as much as possible.
That’s it, and I plan on keeping that way. And if that gadget can’t do more than one thing, unless that one thing is something I eat or do often, that gadget won’t be considered in my home. My kitchen is too small to have its own “As Seen on TV” department.
So what’s your story on kitchen gadgets? Any of them that you multitask with, making more use out of other than what it was designed for? Got your own “As Seen on TV” department in your kitchen? Is there a certain unusual kitchen gadget that you could never live without? How about them new health craze “juicers” and “Nutribullet” high speed blenders? Into that? Any stories about your folks and/or grandparents and the kitchen gadgets from their generation? From the ridiculous to the most “rad”, let’s talk kitchen gadgets!