By Merilee Kern, ‘The Luxe List’ Executive Editor
This holiday season give yourself—or the wishful, burgeoning or accomplished master chef in your life—cool tools of the culinary trade. Not only can killer kitchenware products elevate their gourmet meal game, you may just reap the tasty rewards in kind. Consider this crop of tasty kitchen tchotchkes that’ll save time, hone culinary skills, promote safety and generally make cooking and cleanup more fun and efficient.
Sur La Table’s Pizzeria Pronto (<www.SurLaTable.com) — $299.95
Whether cooking pizzeria-style pizzas on your back patio or whipping them while camping or tailgating, this portable pizza party from renowned culinary tool company, Sur La Table, will duly impress with flawless pizzas in as little as five minutes! This incredible outdoor oven includes many innovative features, including dual cordierite stones, a reflective heat shield, and a moisture vent that deliver mouth-watering pizzas every time. The Pizzeria Pronto portable pizza oven runs on propane, is easy to assemble and disassemble, and preheats in just ten minutes. No one goes hungry for too long with this great cooking device because, once one pizza is done it is immediately ready for another, so you can churn out pizza pies for the whole group lickety split. Let the creatively flow with toppings and doughs of your choice. You may never order out for pizza again!
George Foreman 13-Serving Indoor/Outdoor Grill (www.GeorgeForemanCooking.com) — $119.99
The George Foreman 13-Serving Indoor/Outdoor Grill is designed for those who want the ideal indoor/outdoor appliance to grill and roast lots of victuals, including whole birds, on a 200-square inch surface. The item, perfect for patio grilling in apartments and condos where propane or charcoal are not allowed, cooks up fast and easy meals in under 20 minutes. It features the proprietary George TouchNonstick Coating so no butter or oil is necessary. Variable temperature control helps to cook foods with just the right amount of heat for precise results every time. The well-designed device also comes with a three-year limited warranty.
AnySharp Plus (www.AnySharp.com) — $28
Stay on the cutting edge of everything that needs to be sliced and diced by adding the AnySharp Plus knife sharpener to the gift list this year—even if the gift recipient is you! After all, a sharp knife not only makes slicing, dicing, cutting, julienning, and chopping easier, but it also is safer as the knife is less likely to slip while in use. The quick and easy AnySharp Plus, which uses tungsten carbide sharpening technology, will hone virtually any knife, whether it has a hard anodized or serrated blade. It is the world’s only knife sharpener with a patented PowerGrip suction cup, which attaches securely to any smooth surface, eliminating slipping and jamming. Once attached, knives can be sharpened single handed to keep both hands away from danger. The top also has a useful scissor or blade sharpener. It comes with a 10-year guarantee and is an eco-friendly product available in kitchen décor-friendly casings of grey or carbon fiber.
Savora Oil Mister (www.SavoraStyle.com) — $24.99
The Savora Oil Mister is a great help for healthy non-stick cooking, baking, grilling, roasting and basting, and for dressing salads, vegetables and more. Cooks can easily control the amount of oil used with the non-aerosol, non-chemical, and propellant-free mister. That means less fat and more flavors. Featuring the Micromist insert, which is engineered to optimize airflow and liquid mixture for a finer mist, the Savora Oil Mister has a no-clog filtering system. Not only is it a practical addition to the kitchen, it has a striking design that is made with a reservoir that has been engineered using BPA-free Eastman Tritant, which is more impact-resistant than glass. The contoured head was modeled on the easy-to-use shape of a professional bicycle pump.
Quirky Pluck (www.Quirky.com) — $12.99
Make brunch a breeze thanks to Pluck, the cutest and coolest yolk extractor ever. Simply place it over the yolk of a cracked egg, squeeze the silicone bulb, and release to suck the egg yolk up into it. Makes separating those egg whites fun, whether for healthy omelets, soufflés, meringue or any other recipe that calls for only part of the egg. This innovative kitchen product comes from Quirky, a social product development company that involves a global community of in-house designers and engineers that work with anyone around the world who wants to submit their own product idea and enjoy revenue sharing with Quirky when the products are brought to life.
Stem (www.Quirky.com) — $4.99
Here’s another neat innovation from Quirky—the Stem citrus sprayer that allows you to easily tap the flavor and add some zest to your gourmet dishes. This clever citrus sprayer is designed so you can tap directly into a piece of fresh citrus fruit and spray juice directly onto your food or drink. Stem has serrated teeth that allow for simple insertion into the citrus fruit. This particular product was invented by Tim Houle of Hazel Park, Michigan who submitted his product idea to Quirky and worked with the social product development company’s design and engineering team to bring it to market. Quirky finds some of the best ideas from people all around the world who have ingenious ideas that make life more convenient.
The Snug (www.ThinkHat.com) — $17.99-$28.99
Never has a tiny silicone device done so much in the kitchen. The clever, Apple-esque designed Snug lets users affix a metal or wooden spoon to the edge of a hot pan or pot while cooking to keep the utensil well at hand, clean and heat-free. It can also be used to keep a lid open just a bit, and prevent cooking and serving utensils from slipping into food. The patent-pending Snug is made from an FDA-approved, heat-resistant, food grade silicone material that prevents utensils from absorbing extreme heat. For that cook you adore, this means that there is greater protection from burns and other accidents in the kitchen.
Beatriz Ball Collection (www.BeatrizBall.com) — $191 (cutting board)
When entertaining, any host or hostess of note will have a few signature pieces as part of their serving collection. And, the more artful, the better, which leads me to the Beatriz Ball Collection—a premier manufacturer of handmade tableware pieces with innovative, gorgeous designs. These eco-friendly products are made of 100% recycled aluminum and never tarnish, so they do not require polish. What’s more, they can chill or warm foods up to 350 degrees. Two of my personal favorites from the collection are the Soho Charcuterie Cutting Board, which features a removable cutting board of sanded wood on one side and a surface of gleaming metal on the other. The Vento Lola Pedestal makes a perfectly tempting perch for party sandwiches, pastries, and fruit. It works in tandem with the entire collection of Pedestal and Vento items.
Emmi Fondue Party Helmet (www.Emmi.com) — $50 (pot); $11.99 (cheese fondue)
Cheese fondue is perfect for the cold, crisp holiday season…and most definitely for football season! It’s a versatile and easy party delight that never disappoints. This season, whip up some ready-made fondue in just 15 minutes, and serve it in Emmi’s super cool football-shaped Party Helmet. It even comes complete with a face mask that can be filled with your favorite dipping goodies, including pieces of crusty bread, broccoli, apple slices or cubes of cooked beef or sausage. . This Party Helmet and ready-made fondue kit is a must for any sports fan who likes to entertain and impress while doing so.
Trudeau ‘Stress Less’ Automatic Lever Corkscrew (www.ShopTrudeau.com) — $89.99
Wine corks driving you crazy? Fret no more as the Trudeau ‘Stress Less’ Automatic Lever Corkscrew will let you pop open that bottle in a smooth and easy two-step motion. The device has a firm grip that requires less leverage and effort to pull the cork. Plus, the tempered steel, sharp-edged spiral has been triple coated for effortless removal. Notably recommended by the Canadian Association of Professional Sommeliers, this corkscrew features a clear window to see the cork release and also includes a magnetic foil cutter that clips to the corkscrew base for storage. What a great way to pop those bottles of wine at holiday dinners and parties this season to keep the merriment flowing!
Trudeau Aroma Aerating Pourer (www.ShopTrudeau.com) — $29.99
Hardened oenophiles and novice wine drinkers, alike, are sure to enjoy Trudeau’s Aroma Aerating Pourer that allows wine to breathe, greatly enhancing its natural flavors. This well-engineered aerating pourer features an air intake system that aerates as the wine is poured. This brief touch provides the equivalent of 30 minutes of traditional decanting in mere seconds, allowing you to uncork, aerate, and serve in seamless transition to satisfy those waiting to enjoy a glass of wine. The Trudeau Aroma Aerating Pourer basically is decanting, by the glass, made as easy as possible. “Cheers” to that convenience!
Oransi Fridge Air Purifier (www.Oransi.com) — $29
Everyone loves their refrigerator to smell its very best, and the Oransi Fridge Air Purifier is a great invention in this regard. It completely kills fridge odors and bacteria, leaving food fresher, longer. This innovative air purifier works by cycling on and off and uses a microchip brain to detect when smells are present. No bigger than a large lemon, it can fit into any size refrigerator. And, there are no filters to buy and replace! This easy-to-use, completely silent air purifier only costs $1 per month to operate. The Oransi Fridge Air Purifier is eco-friendly, only uses two AA batteries and is made of fire-resistant ABS materials. It comes with great credentials, including safety certifications from GS and CE and the RoHS lead free directive.
EnviroMate Pronto P7 (www.ReliableCorporation.com) — $99.00
When all of the culinary action is complete, keep the kitchen looking its best and your appliances and cookware functioning at their best with the EnviroMate Pronto P7 portable steam cleaner. With the power of steam, 15 attachments, and a heat-up time of just two minutes, the handheld Pronto is a quick, eco-friendly and uber-effective alternative to cleaning the kitchen. Only requiring water, this powerful cleaning machine can help you tackle the sink, countertops, backsplashes, stovetop, microwave and refrigerator with ease. Not damaging to stainless steel, the steam from this machine can kill common bacteria and germs found in the kitchen. It is a great solution for sanitizing sealed surfaces, such as wood cutting boards. It can eliminate food splatters, remove stubborn stains, and clean discolored tile grout. Its compact size means that can be stored easily under the kitchen sink for easy access.
“The Luxe List” Executive Editor Merilee Kern scours the luxury marketplace for exemplary travel experiences, extraordinary events, and notable products and services. Submissions are accepted at www.LuxeListReviews.com. Follow her on Twitter here: http://twitter.com/LuxeListEditor and Facebook here: www.Facebook.com/TheLuxeList.
***Some or all of the accommodations(s), experience(s), item(s) and/or service(s) detailed above were provided at no cost to accommodate this review, but all opinions expressed are entirely those of Merilee Kern and have not been influenced in any way.***