Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Renovation Essentials

I miss the ease of a burner and oven, and a microwave for that matter! But it has been fun to get creative and learn new ways to make things. I have a whole new respect for cooking with minimum resources! Even in my college "dorm" we had a tiny kitchen with dishwasher and all... so I admit I've been spoiled. I decided to make a guide for anyone going through a kitchen renovation, dorm/tiny apartment living, or just looking for simplicity. Some of these are new to me and others I've been using for years and have found a deeper appreciation for the last couple weeks!

Breville Panini Press:
This has gotten great use over the years for many panini! But lately, I've been using it to make grilled cheese, quesadillas, egg in the holes, even scrambled eggs. Yes, you read that right! The bottom is flat and has a little lip so it can hold about 4 eggs without spilling over. I'm certain the manufacturer wouldn't recommend using it this way, but it works and I'm desperate for healthy protein options! This press heats up really fast and is super simple to wipe down and clean. Highly recommend this!

All Clad Slow Cooker:
We got this slow cooker when we got married and I have loved it. We use it often and shows no signs of wear and tear. I love that the insert and lid can be stored in the fridge for easy meal prep the night before you throw it in and even for leftovers, just let the food cool first. I have to admit, I've been testing this thing lately and realized I haven't maximized it's potential. I heated my leftover meatballs and sauce in it and threw in angel hair pasta...just to see how it cooked. And believe it or not, the mouthfeel was excellent! I should have added a touch of water or tomato sauce to give the finished dish more moisture but otherwise, this was an easy one pan plan that I'll be making again! I plan to try this with a different shape pasta to see if this is universal with all pastas. Regardless, this is a great quality slow cooker!

Miroco Electric Kettle:
I bought this right before we started the kitchen. I drink peppermint tea every night and normally just microwave my mug of water. I knew being without a microwave I needed an option for hot water for tea, oatmeal, instant soup, thawing frozen veggies, etc. I researched many electric kettles and based on safety features, reviews, and appearance, this seemed like the clear winner. The price is reasonable but there's also a coupon to save 15% at checkout which is even better! I've been using this kettle daily for the last 3 weeks and I really have no complaints. It boils water fast and has various settings to hit your water at the exact temperature your heart desires. Very pleased with this addition to my kitchen appliances!

Nespresso Milk Frother:
I need milk in my coffee and without a microwave to take the edge off, this has been a saving grace. I'm on the team of piping hot coffee and adding cold milk or cream just brings the temperature too far down for my liking. I understand this sounds high maintenance, but coffee brings so much joy to my mornings, and I like the way I like it! I used this frother religiously when we first bought our Nespresso machine but after some time I found it an extra thing to clean. However, I'm back to loving the warm milk and frothy goodness it adds to my morning coffee(s). I have an older version that is discontinued but this is the newer model that I will switch to when my old one retires.

Sour Candies:
Unrelated to meals but I've been on a sour candy kick and these have been on my nightly rotation! If you are into sour, these are truly a must try!
Extreme Sour Chewy SweeTARTS
Sour Strawberry Belts
Sour Gummy Lips

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