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Tips On Buying The Best Waffle Maker

The taste and smell of a delicious waffle, there is nothing to beat it at breakfast or any time. Now established as a firm family favorite, the question arises as to how best to make them in the home kitchen? The answer of course, is to find the best waffle maker that will produce waffles in just the way you and your family like them. There are numerous makes and models of waffle maker offered in the market place and the video below shows a typical example of those available from Cuisinart:

These small kitchen appliances invariably consist of two iron plates, preferably coated with a non-stick surface, that come together to form a specific pattern of cavities between them within which the waffle batter resides during the cooking process. The shape of the cavities together with the overall shape of the perimeter of the plates, creates the well known waffle shapes and designs that we all recognize. The appliance is usually electrically heated and will come with numerous controls and/or digital screen display.

Choosing the best waffle maker for your preferred outcome in your kitchen is a very personal choice. Both the shape and size of the appliance, (where will you store it? Is it portable? Will it fit the kitchen decor?) and the waffles themselves (Large or small? How thick? How many at a time?), need to be addressed in seeking the best purchase.

It doesn't matter whether you are shopping online or offline you will discover many manufacturers such as Cuisinart, Waring, Presto, Black & Decker, Conair and Oster, each offering a whole series of models to choose from.

One non-technical point that is most important is to choose a model that you find easy-on-the-eye and you are going to feel happy about using. There is nothing worse than a cook who 'has to use' an appliance he or she actually dislikes using! That said, it is important to choose a waffle maker that has only the features and accessories that suit your preferences and that you will use. Any features over and above those will only add unnecessary costs.

Models with stainless steel casings are usually the easiest to keep clean and go with most kitchen color schemes. All waffle makers will come with basic controls such as power on/off, timer, temperature control. As you step up in any manufacturers range, you will be offered more complex controls and information displays. Mostly this means more use of modern technology in the way of LED's instead of simple on/off light indicators, continuous read-out temperature indicators and digital displays.

To gather information on what machines are available and how they are perceived by professional reviewers, use a search engine to search the internet for 'best waffle makers' and you will find a myriad of appropriate websites that can help you. To find reviews by people that have previously bought waffle makers, then go online to or your favorite online hardware store and read customer reviews for various waffle maker models.

Whether you use the internet or not it is always a good idea, before purchasing your likely choice, to go down to your local supermarket or large hardware store and to get a hands-on appreciation of the model you like.

Finally, before you purchase, make sure you understand from the seller what warranty period is given and that the terms and conditions of that warranty are fully identified. Warranties can differ from supplier to supplier for the identical product.

Large Ice Cream Scoops - Why Sometimes Bigger Is Really Better

Some individuals say size does not really matter. However, if you are in the kitchen or serving a lot of people, sometimes you do have to act very fast. And in such situations, you would definitely want to reach for something that has a larger capacity. The same can be said of the ice cream scoop. While ice cream scoops can come in a variety of sizes, the biggest of which is about 1 cup or ¼ of a quart and the smallest is 1/100 of a quart or about 9-10 mL, you definitely will find the larger to be particularly useful.

But why not use the smaller one? Well, if you are going to perform a lot of food decorating by creating miniature balls the size of a pea then perhaps you will need the smaller one. The point is that ice cream scoops, particularly the disher type, can serve a variety of functions. Because most ice cream scoops come in different sizes with respect to the quart, one of its most helpful uses is as a measuring cup. And this is why an extra large ice cream scoop really matters.

If you are in the business of portioning meals to individuals, you will be a lot more efficient using a large ice scooper than a smaller version. This facilitates faster scooping and portioning of the food as well as faster turnover. This also translates to fewer irate heads because some people may have already finished their meals while others are still waiting for you to complete portioning their food.

If you are dealing with liquids, you can use the ice cream scoops as a dipping tool much like you would a scooped ladle. Fruit punches or other refreshments can be efficiently served using a large metal ice scooper. Imagine how many scoops it would take you to fill up a glass if you were to use a Size 100 ice cream scoop. Now imagine how individuals will feel if they have to wait for you to fill up their drinks.

If you are into baking, you can use the ice cream scoop as a measuring tool for your dry baking ingredients. For example you need 4 cups of flour and a cup of baking soda. So you will need to use the Size 4 ice cream scoop and you need 4 scoops of the flour and a scoop of the baking soda. Now, try consider using a Size 50 which is about 19-20 mL per scoop. That simply translates to 200 scoops of flour and 50 scoops of baking soda. Unless you are in an arm endurance competition, we doubt if it makes sense to use a smaller ice cream scooper. You can also find online some good ice cream scooper size charts to be able to find the right ice cream scoop for you, but personally I prefer the large stainless steel ice scoop.

Now of course, these are all hypothetical situations but you would agree that a reasonably-sized ice cream scoop is a lot better, more efficient, and more practical than a small sized version. If you think a Size 4 is too big for you, then get one in the middle. A Size 14 should provide you with 3 ounces of your ingredients or food. You could also use a 2 oz ice cream scoop as well. This should cover most of your cooking and food preparation needs as well as the perfect size for your ice cream cone. 

Halogen Ovens For Efficient Cooking

Did you know that a halogen oven can cook more efficiently than a conventional oven? In fact they can reach full heat faster largely because they are smaller in size but also as a result of the high performance fan. The fan circulates the air and as a result, the heat is distributed throughout the bowl.

Not only is a halogen oven efficient, it fits in any small space. It just needs a bit of space around it since the bowl will get pretty hot during the cooking cycle. As well you will need some space above the lid so you can open it to add or remove food.

If you love to camp, have a boat or a weekend cottage without a conventional oven, you will love adding this oven to your kitchen area. You can produce a lot of food in this tiny oven and not miss your full-sized oven one little bit!

A halogen oven is great for single people or a couple since you can produce a dinner or quick meal without a lot of fuss. Forgot to take the meat out of the freezer before you left for work? No problem. Just add the frozen meat to the halogen oven and in a few minutes you will have a well cooked meal.

So what can you cook in a halogen oven? Everything from chicken to turkey to steaks and potatoes and vegetables. You can even cook breads and cake or your favorite apple pie. Truly you can't beat halogen oven cooking for efficiency.

You will love the shorter cooking time that gets you out of the kitchen quicker. As well clean-up is a breeze. You simply remove the bowl and hand wash it in hot, soapy water. Some halogen ovens even have a wash cycle so you just add water and soap and press a button.

You can clean the oven after each use or clean it once a week. The lid is a little more difficult to clean since it houses the elements that shouldn't get wet. Just use a soapy brush or sponge and wipe it off.

All in all, a halogen oven is still a lot easier to clean than a conventional oven.

When it comes to safety you will find that halogen ovens have a clever mechanism that shuts the power off the minute you lift the handle. Even when grilling a steak, you don't have to worry about flare ups or flames like you would with a barbeque.

One of the best parts of a halogen oven is watching the food cook in the glass bowl. Although one might argue that the best part is enjoying the delicious, moist and tender meat and poultry that gets cooked in a halogen oven.

Making Sense Of The 4 Sides Of A Box Cheese Grater

If you are like other homemakers who simply do not have a clue as to the purpose of the different holes in a four-sided box grater, then consider yourself lucky you stumbled on this post. The box cheese grater in your cupboard is not only an excellent cheese grater, it is also a very convenient and truly versatile kitchen utensil. Most homeowners only use one or two sides of these useful products which greatly undermine the functional utility of the boxed grater.

Box graters have different holes in different sides for different purposes.

Small-sized Holes
One side of the box cheese grater contains holes that have a sharp cutting edge in the bottom. This is perfect for shredding pieces of food ingredients into finer particles. Firm vegetables like carrots, potatoes, zucchinis, squash, pumpkins, and even garlic will be perfectly processed using this grater surface. The smaller holes will also be perfect for certain kinds of hard cheese like Parmesan, Asiago, and Romano. This is also perfect for grating ginger, garlic, and onions to effectively hide them off the prying eyes of children.

Medium-sized Holes
Medium-sized holes are good for food items that require moderately sized shreds. Cabbages for coleslaw as well as potatoes for hash brown will simply be excellent when this portion of the box cheese grater is used. Semi-firm cheese such as cheddar, Edam, Gouda, and Colby will be perfect in this type of box grater hole.

Small-sized Holes with Protruding Edges
The rough surface of the small-sized holes with protruding edges is typically used for grating citrus zests. Whether it is a lemon, an orange, or even a lime, this will be perfect for scratching the surface of the citrus fruit without going into its white skin perfect for adding a certain zest to cakes as well as salads and desserts. A sprinkle of grated chocolate on top of your vanilla ice cream will also be made equally possible by this grater surface.

Slicing Slots
For people who may have problems slicing vegetables into thin slices, the slicing unit of a box grater will prove indispensable. Just run the vegetable across the blade of the slicing slot and you can already have a nicely sliced ingredient for your next dish.

Technically, the use of the different sides of a box grater is largely dependent on how you want your ingredient to be processed. If you require an ingredient that is fine, then use the small holes. If you require ingredients that are a little bit larger, then the moderate holes will be used. If you require ingredients with less fluid, get the ones with the protruding edges. And, if you require slicing, then you use the slicer slot. Simple.