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Toaster & Egg Poacher

Posted on Nov 5, 2010 in Gizmo Girl

How cool is this multi-tasking toaster?  This might just be one of my all-time favorite gadgets as far as looks go.  Not only is it a great showpiece, but it also makes breakfast much easier and cleaner. You don’t even need to turn on the stove or wash a pot. Where poached eggs are concerned, toast is practically a necessity. You need something crunchy and porous to sponge up the warm, runny yolk and toast always does the trick. In four minutes, breakfast is ready. This clever gizmo comes with a removable crumb tray and a measuring cup. There’s also a control touchpad to adjust the level of heat, so people who like their toast well done (burnt) can have perfect toast. Egg and Muffin Toaster & Egg Poacher ...

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Muffin Tops

Posted on Oct 27, 2010 in Gizmo Girl

There’s a gadget for almost everything these days.  Craving a muffin sans the bottom?  No problem.  Someone with a muffin top fetish or a Seinfeld fanatic came up with this clever pan.  Though I’d have no problem baking the whole muffin, the truth is I’d rather just eat the crusty top too.  Most people would.  Since the molds are shallow, it takes a lot less time to bake.  So if you have a few extra minutes at breakfast, you can whip up some batter, pour it in these non-stick molds and can start your day with a freshly baked, homemade muffin.  Since it’s pumpkin season, I want to make pumpkin muffin tops. Muffin Tops $...

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Foolproof Homemade Donuts

Posted on Sep 15, 2010 in Gizmo Girl

I don’t know about you, but we’re so over cupcakes. Thankfully, pastry chefs are turning their attention to other baked creations, like pies and donuts.  It doesn’t get much better than freshly fried dough, sprinkled with cinnamon and sugar or stuffed with raspberry jelly.  Of course, it’s probably not a good idea to make a daily habit of fried donuts, which is why we’re obsessed with Babycakes’ baked donuts.  But unless you happen to live near the Babycakes shop in New York or Los Angeles, you’re stuck with the fried variety. So we decided to make our own. We found the Mini Donut Factory (pictured right), which bakes, not fries, your donuts for you.  Literally.  Making donuts at home usually requires special pans and donut cutters, but with the donut maker, all you have to do is make the...

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Taco Rack

Posted on Sep 9, 2010 in Gizmo Girl

I don’t know about you, but I’d like to pretend summer’s not over just yet.  Who wants to leave behind barbecues and picnics and dinners with cocktails and friends?   Luckily, we don’t have to.  Instead of barbecues, we can throw Mexican fiestas, replete with margaritas and tacos.  But as we recently discovered, hard tacos can get very messy.  I don’t know if you’ve ever tried to serve tacos, but they don’t stand up on their own.  They tip over and the fillings spill out all over the plate.  So we dug around a little and found this taco rack (pictured right).  Just heat up the hard shells in the oven, place them on the rack and layer with fillings.  It even has vinyl grips at each end, so you don’t burn your hands on the metal rack.  And...

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Rib Rack

Posted on Sep 2, 2010 in Gizmo Girl

Labor Day is fast approaching, which sadly means summer is almost over.  There goes half-day Fridays, white pants and local peaches.  But there’s still time for one last, big BBQ before the summer fun ends.  We want to go out big, so we’re making ribs, but as we learned a few weeks ago, one rack can take up the entire grill.  There was no room for corn or zucchini on the grill, not to mention that you have to grill each rib rack one at a time, which took forever.  It got ugly. We dug around a little and found this stainless steel rib rack (pictured right), which allows you to grill six rib racks at a time.  Each rack of ribs fits into a compartment on the stainless steel rack and cooks vertically, creating more room under the...

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DIY Ice Cream Sandwiches

Posted on Aug 25, 2010 in Gizmo Girl

Last week’s sleek popsicle molds inspired a search for other inventive gadgets for making frozen treats. There’s only one frozen dessert we love as much as popsicles and that’s ice cream sandwiches.  And apparently, we’re not the only ones who feel this way.  The mix-and-match ice cream sandwiches at The Meatball Shop, located in the East Village, are just as popular as their meatballs, With this ice cream sandwich maker (pictured right), you can make your own ice cream sandwiches whenever the craving strikes.  The possibilities are limitless.  You can make a peanut butter and strawberry ice cream sandwich,   a chocolate chip mint, or snickerdoodles with moosetracks.   Just bake a freshly baked batch of cookies and use the cookie cutter to create equally sized triangles for the two cookie layers.  Use the mold to combine the cookies...

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DIY Popsicles

Posted on Aug 18, 2010 in Gizmo Girl

You never really grow out of popsicles.  I love them just as much today as I did when I held my first popsicle, though I do eat them more gracefully these days.  And this sleek, stainless steel mold (pictured right) is practically made for grown ups.  It’s also BPA free, dishwasher safe and comes with stainless steel lids and silicone rings, which makes for easy clean up and worry-free licking. The best part is that whatever you can dream up, you can create.  You can layer different fillings and flavors to make a colorful, multi-flavored creation or blend a few of your favorite ingredients together and pour it into the molds.  You can freeze your own creamsiclea with vanilla cream and orange juice or a healthy afternoon snack of Greek yogurt whipped up with greenmarket berries.  And you don’t...

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Dual BBQ Grill Pan

Posted on Aug 11, 2010 in Gizmo Girl

It’s the height of BBQ season and we’ve been taking full advantage of cooking on the grill.  Really, there isn’t much that doesn’t taste better grilled – our recent favorites are peaches and octopus.   The only complain we have is that smaller ingredients, like local stone fruits or shellfish, fall through the grates of the grill and are lost forever. So we did a little digging and found the Dual Grill Pan, (pictured right) that prevents anything from falling into the flames.   The pan lays flat across the top of any grill, so there’s no chance of losing food.   The perforated side of the pan is perfect for cooking vegetables and shellfish, while the ridged side is made for big cuts of meat, like steak or chicken.  It’s also nonstick, which makes for easy clean up.  That something...

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Wine Tote

Posted on Aug 4, 2010 in Gizmo Girl

When summer arrives, we’ve got to milk it for all its worth.  Really, it doesn’t get better than dining in the great outdoors, whether that be al fresco sidewalk seating in the city, a picnic in the park or a day at the beach.  The only problem is that by the time we make it to our destination, our bottle of rose has gotten warm. That’s why we fell in love with this wine tote (pictured right.)  This isn’t your average insulated bag.  It includes 2 wine glasses, checkered picnic napkins, a corkscrew, and an insulated compartment to keep wine at its optimal temperature.  All you have to do is add your favorite bottle of champagne or wine, throw the tote over your shoulder and seize summer before fall sets in. $30,...

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On-Ice Bowl

Posted on Jul 28, 2010 in Gizmo Girl

Throwing an outdoor party, unfortunately, tends to require a lot of time spent indoors prepping.  Whether it’s getting meat for the grill, ice for drinks, or snacks to refill bowls means plenty of trips back & forth from the kitchen to your guests.  This on-ice acrylic bowl (pictured right) won’t eliminate your trips inside altogether, but it will certainly cut down on them. Simply put ice in the bottom compartment, put the bowl on top of the ice and fill it with anything from pasta salad to shrimp cocktail to a green salad.  The additional sections are ideal for separating fruit or crudite and the center compartment is perfect for dip.  The vented grate at the bottom of the bowl keeps things cold and prevents food from getting soggy or the ice from melting all over the table.  The...

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Curly Fry Cutter

Posted on Jul 21, 2010 in Gizmo Girl

There’s something very gratifying about curly fries that makes them seem tastier than stick fries.  Instead of going to your favorite burger joint, you can easily make your own at home with this curly fry cutter.  It only takes seconds to crank out spiraled cuts of potatoes or sweet potatoes.  The stainless steel blade makes for a more precise cut, while the dishwasher-safe exterior guarantees an easy cleanup.  The cut potatoes are housed in the bottom compartment, which stores up to three cups, and can be conveniently emptied directly into the frying fan. We tinkered with our new gadget this weekend and made some salty,sweet potato curls to complement our barbecue burgers.  Yummy. $26.99,...

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Ice Crusher

Posted on Jul 6, 2010 in Gizmo Girl

A limitless supply of ice is essential to any summer bbq.  Crushed ice takes drinks to a whole new level.  Think about how fun it is to drink a Slurpee.  This ice crusher (pictured right) is an easy way to make your own slurpees or better yet, summery cocktails. Just add ice cubes, close the lid, and turn the handle to make crushed ice in a few seconds.  The suction-cup base sticks to any surface, so you can bring it to the table and set up a bar outside.   We’ve successfully made icy mint juleps and our frozen raspberry margaritas. $14.99,...

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Five-In-One Unitool

Posted on Jun 23, 2010 in Gizmo Girl

I’ve seen loads of gadgets, but this is the first one that performs five functions at once. This might just be the perfect kitchen tool and it’s under ten dollars.   It may not look like much, but the unitool saves a lot of kitchen space and money.  There’s a slotted spoon on one end and a solid spoon on the other along with a blade for cutting up ingredients.  You can also this gizmo as a spatula and a turner.   If that wasn’t enough, you can also stick it in the dishwasher.  Pretty perfect. Dream UniTool   $8.00...

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Odd-Sized Measuring Spoons

Posted on Jun 17, 2010 in Gizmo Girl

Recipes come in all shapes & sizes.   Creme brulees call for blow torches, others call for 3 1/2 lime juice or 1 3/4 teaspoons of vanilla.   Most end up eyeballing it and hope for the best.   Baking’s a science and approximating measurements can make or break a recipe. Spoon Sisters came out with a line of odd-sized measuring spoons for all those recipes that make you nervous.  No more praying for the best, now 1 1/2 teaspoons, 1/8 or even 2/3 are accounted for in your five-piece set of spoons.   They’re essential to anyone who cooks a lot at home. Spoon Sisters —...

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Cupcake Corer

Posted on Jun 10, 2010 in Gizmo Girl

Have you ever wondered how they get the jelly inside a donut or the cream into a puff?  Discovering the filling is half the fun.  It was a delcious mystery to me until I decided to make cupcakes with a fudge center.  I snooped around and found this clever gadget (pictured right,) which inserts filling into the beloved cupcake. The cupcake corer does all the work for you by carving a perfect hole in the center of the cupcake.  Just twist the corer into the middle of an already baked and cooled cupcake, pull out the corer, and push down on the plunger to remove the core.  Then fill the empty center with whatever you like, using one of the squeezable decorating bottles included in the set. You can do anything from cream in the center of a banana...

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Coffee Bean Ice Tray

Posted on Jun 2, 2010 in Gizmo Girl

It’s officially iced coffee season.  Walking down the street with a cup of hot coffee on a hot day can feel like wearing a turtleneck to the beach.   The only downside to iced coffee is the ice cubes melts too quickly and you end up drinking a watered-down drink.  Not anymore. We tracked down these coffee bean ice trays that literally eliminate watery coffee because you fill the tray with coffee instead of water. Unlike your garden variety trays,  these are specially designed for hot liquids and shaped like coffee beans. Just brew a batch of coffee or use what’s leftover from your morning batch, pour into the trays and freeze.  Add these adorable, bean-shaped cubes to the glass for a strong, better tasting iced coffee.  You can also add them to a glass that’s been sitting out a...

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Electric Griddle

Posted on May 27, 2010 in Gizmo Girl

Crepes are one of those great anytime foods.   Sweet or savory, crepes can be served for breakfast, dinner, or dessert.   They always make it look so easy in restaurants.   Instead of a pan, restaurants use griddles to make perfect crepes. We found an electric griddle (pictured right) that helps home cooks make crepes that are on par with restaurant quality.   It even comes with a batter spreader to evenly coat the griddle.   The result are evenly cooked and sized crepes that can be filled with anything from nutella and bananas to zucchini and goat cheese.   It works just as well on pancakes.  This is a one-stop shop for all your breakfast needs, including bacon to accompany your pancakes or fill your crepes. $49.94,...

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Reclaimed Cheese Board

Posted on May 20, 2010 in Gizmo Girl

Have you ever been to a house party and wanted to know what kind of cheese was on the cheese plate?  It’s nice to know exactly what you’re eating and where it’s from. This  cheese board (pictured right) is made of reclaimed chalkboards from a real high school in Illinois.   That means you can label all your cheeses right on the board.  When you’re done, just wash off the chalk and start all over again.   You can throw your own cheese & wine tastings or give to a fromage-obsessed friend as a gift.   The origin of this chalkboard cheese board is part of its charm. Chalkboard Cheese Board —...

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Pasta & Parmesan Tool

Posted on May 13, 2010 in Gizmo Girl

Pasta is the kind of dish you can throw together last minute and still end up with something wonderful for dinner.  And if you keep dried pasta and parmesan on hand, you don’t even have to go shopping before dinner.   Now, all you need is the right tools. Or maybe just one. This pasta & Parmesan tool (pictured right) is 3 tools in one, making  cooking pasta even easier.  For starters, it measures out pasta into equal portion, and once the pasta is done cooking, the “fork” end of this gadget can be used to pick up pasta and its sauce.  It even has a built-in grater for topping your pasta with fresh Parmesan or any other hard cheese you like.  Really, all you need is boiling water,a box of pasta, and cheese.  Dinner is served. $16.00,...

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Long Handle Muddle

Posted on May 6, 2010 in Gizmo Girl

Muddling is a marvelous way to punch up any cocktail, not to mention take advantage of spring citrus, like blood oranges.  But really you can  muddle anything from basil to cilantro, injecting real flavor instead of those infused liquors you buy in stores. You don’t have to go out to have a muddled cocktail.  All you need is your favorite spirit and some fresh fruit of herbs to put your own spin on a mojito or Old-Fashioned.  This muddler (pictured right) has a long handle, so you can muddle right in the glass, which saves time & space.   The real clencher is the pestle’s base, which is shaped exactly like fruit, so it juices quicker and much more efficiently.   You can whip up your own batch of meyer lemon mojitos or clementine gimlet’s or whatever else looks...

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