The New Year is often a time for people to try new things: test out new diets, develop new habits, acquire new skills. Why not extend that tradition to your kitchen? The next time you’re out and about, pick up a new gadget and learn about a new way to cook. Here are three gadgets you should try this year.
Sous vide machine
Traditionally, the sous vide process involves vacuum-sealing proteins like meats and eggs in bags, submerging them in a temperature-controlled water bath and letting them cook for a number of hours at a low, precise heat. Developed in Europe by three-star Michelin chef Georges Pralus in the mid 1970s, sous vide is a rather foolproof cooking method that has been used in restaurant kitchens for decades. Many high-end places in Tampa Bay, like Edison: Food+Drink Lab in Tampa and FarmTable Kitchen in St. Petersburg, use it. Nationally, Starbucks recently started offering Sous Vide Egg Bites on its menu.
Sous vide machines, like the Anova immersion circulator or SousVide Supreme water oven, work a lot like slow cookers. You turn them on, drop in your bags of food and let them go for several hours. They’re easy to use, convenient and perfect for the home cook.
They usually sell for around $200.
Spiralizers have been around for a while now; they were a really big trend in 2015. Best for making “produce pasta,” Spiralizers can turn any vegetable into shoestrings or noodles in seconds. They’re perfect to try out this time of year, especially for people trying new diets (like eating clean) or if they’re just trying to eat healthier.
Popular food blog The Kitchn tested out three Spiralizers, including:
- Veggetti Spirali Vegetable Slicer ($9.99)
- Paderno World Cuisine Spiralizer Pro, 4-Blade ($29.99)
- OXO Good Grips Handheld Spiralizer ($14.99)
Of the three, the author liked the Paderno gadget better because, though it took up space, it can be used with a variety of veggies and is easy to assemble.
Dehydrators are great for things other than homemade beef jerky (or, as my dad used to make it, teriyaki venison jerky with pepper flakes). They’re great for food preservation, especially for when pesky hurricane season rolls around again, or snacks around the house (like these fruit roll-ups or homemade banana chips).
Dehydrators used to be huge and clunky, but they’ve gotten relatively small and inexpensive. You can get a great one from Walmart for around $35.