The Pantry: Unused and Underappreciated

They live their lives in the depths below  our countertops, gathering dust and rarely seeing the light of day.  We all have them.  They all are the results of a handful of thoughtful friends or a dozen misguided shopping trips.  What am I talking about here?  I’m talking about the appliances and kitchen gadgets that you never use.  Admit it, you have a few of these lurking in your kitchen somewhere.  You never use them, but you don’t part with them because you just might use them one day.  One day.  Maybe.  Right?  Sure you will.

I’m guilty of harboring these fellows.  In someone else’s kitchen, they’d most likely  get used much more frequently.  In mine, they take up space.

Here’s my line-up of the four  most  neglected appliances and gadgets in my kitchen:

Deep Fryer

I bought this fellow one Christmas for my husband.  I believe it was used twice–maybe three times.  Despite the fact that we live in the South, we just don’t deep fry things often enough to warrant lugging this guy out to do the job for us.  A heavy pot with a little bit of oil takes a lot less effort and wastes a lot less oil.  I should’ve saved the cash for something else.

Blender

To be honest, I’d love to use my blender more often.  It’s just that every time I try to use this one, it doesn’t do exactly what I want it to.  Now, this problem may be due to the blender (which I doubt because it’s a decent, quality blender), or this problem may be all user-error related–I’m going to place a bet that it’s me.  Either way, it makes this appliance a complete hassle for me to work with.  I’d trade it for a food processor in a skinny minute–especially since most of the tasks I end up employing it for are ones that could be better done in a food processor.

Mandolin

I’ve attempted to use this gadget twice.  I have always had high hopes for it.  I’ve watched how-to’s, and I’ve even paid special attention when the celebrity hosts on Food Network break theirs out in order to prepare something super special.  Alas, I simply cannot operate this seemingly simple, deceptively easy looking contraption.  I often ask myself why it still has a place in my gadget drawer.

Gravy Separator

It’s a beautiful  looking little glass.  Fragile.  Gleaming.

It cries out to me every major holiday, “Use me!  I promise you won’t spill drippings all over yourself.  Not this time.”

It lies.  I always do.  Honestly, it’s easier to pour the drippings into a cup and skim the fat before pouring.  However, this contraption, too, maintains its place of honor in the cabinet.

Why do I keep these things around?

I think that somewhere deep inside, I hold a secret hope that one day I will overcome whatever kitchen incompetence keeps me from being able to use these gadgets properly.  Until then, they’ll continue to reside in the shadows, dreaming of their unrealized potential culinary greatness.

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