Monday, October 5, 2009

Kitchen gadgets...

A short post today, I've got a looooooooong day tomorrow and must sleep, but I wanted to post quickly about my new-found love of kitchen gadgets!

Today I had to make another batch of Filets de Poisson a la Bretonne (oh, darn) because I'd bought too much of everything that goes in it, but still had enough of the delectable creamy white wine sauce leftover from the first time around to skip that laborious step (yay!). So I did the cooking in stages today, in between other things, which I've realized is totally the way to go with french cooking, since most things keep well for several hours, and/or Julia tells you where in the recipe you can prepare up to in advance, so I actually heeded her advice today, and poached the fish around 3, made the risotto when I got home from supervision around 5:30, and stuck the fish under the broiler right before hubby got home and everything was perfectly hot and ready when he walked in the door! (I know this sounds sooooo Stepford, but it benefited both of us that I was so timely (finally) with dinner, since I was starving and we had somewhere to be at 7:30). I think the fish was actually better this time, because I poached it in a mix of white wine and dry white vermouth (picked up at my new favorite wine store, "Wine Country" next to my favorite store store, Target! It's so nice when the stars align!) this time, which I think gave it a nice little kick. Hubby and I both hate Vermouth (and gin) usually, but for cooking it's divine.

Anyway, I digress. The point here is that today I got over my fear of my huge food processor (a very gift, I think, from a few years ago), which I have only ever used to make pesto, which I've only made twice. I remembered a few days ago that it comes with a slicing/grating blade, and I've been reading Julie Powell's old blog, and she mentions how fantastic her Cuisinart was for chopping onions, which as we all know, is my least favorite thing. So, I pulled it out, blew off the dust (ew, that sounds gross, it wasn't really that dusty), figured out how to put it together (much easier than I thought) and it sliced two onions in about 30 seconds. Woot! I will now use that thing any chance I get. Fantastic.

I also used my little onion chopper (for the onions that went into the risotto), and it minced them up nice and quick with very little tearing up from me--this is huge, because when I cut onions, my eyes tear to the point of mascara running down my face, and my eyes burn for about the next 3 hours. Not pretty. So I also love my little chopper that I got at BBB for $9.99.

I also used my Microplane today! (The gadget love is overflowing). I always forget I have it, because I bought it with a wedding gift card we got to Williams Sonoma, a store that I never set foot in usually, since the nearest one is 30 minutes away and feel like an imposter in there, and I bought it because it seemed so fancy-pants and like the kind of thing that "real cooks" have, which I am only now even getting close to becoming, so...needless to say, the Microplane hasn't been appreciated around here, but that's all changing! I used it to grate the Swiss cheese onto the fish, and it was super easy, super fast, and you can grate right into the pot, quickly, which is good for fresh cheese because otherwise it all lumps together while you wait to sprinkle it. Did you know that about fresh cheese? I didn't, until about 6pm tonight, but Microplane saved the day!

So that's all today! Bon soir!

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