Expert Advice to Choose the Best Deep Fryer

Deep frying is a delicious way to prepare certain foods. The crisp texture is hard to beat. A lot of people use oil in a deep fry pan for frying foods and this can work very well. However, a deep fryer can be a very nice alternative, especially if you do a lot of deep frying.

There are drawbacks to frying with oil in a deep frying pan. First, the temperature can be very hard to control. Frying foods at a specific temperature is important because of frying time and the certainty that your food is done. Second, depending how big the frying pan you are using is the food may not fit properly. And third, the used oil must be stored or thrown away. This can be a messy and dangerous job. If you do decide to consider a home deep fryer there are several features to look at before purchasing.

Storage

A home deep fryer is about the size of a toaster oven. Consider size carefully as you want to have a deep fryer big enough to use but also one that fits on your counter or in your cupboard. Look for models with sturdy baskets and deep oil wells, and then think about the amount of clear counter space you have that is near an outlet. If you decide to store the deep fryer in a cupboard think about a way to protect your unit and how to keep the oil clean and covered.

Temperature

Avoid models that have a simple on and off switch with no way to control the temperature. Also stay away from models that have only the temperature settings low, medium, and high. Look for units that let you set your oil to a specific temperature. Oil temperature is very important when frying food and you want a model that will keep your oil hot and at a certain temperature.

Capacity

Consider your needs when deciding which deep fryer to buy. Will you be frying for one person or a whole family. Make sure you buy a fryer with the maximum capacity that you think you will need. A too small capacity will cause food to not cook properly.

New Innovations

Watch for new technology. Get the latest up to date features that deep fryers have to offer. For example, there is a fryer that will rotate food through the oil. This results in crisp food that doesn’t have as much residual oil.

It is essential to read the best deep fryer reviews on the type of frying equipment that you need in your kitchen.

Hack a Toaster Oven for Reflow Soldering – The Convection Option

Toaster ovens are becoming more and more popular these days and for very good reason. There are several key factors that make the toaster oven so appealing, and understanding them will help when deciding on whether or not to use one in your home. The following is a list of the most important facts about toaster ovens and they will cover both the pros, as well as the cons, of purchasing one for yourself.

One of the biggest benefits to using a toaster oven is its energy saving ability. The average toaster oven will function properly on 1,500 watts of power whereas the average electric oven needs 7,500 watts of power if it is to operate normally. Keep in mind however, that a standard toaster will function on 900 watts of power, so preparing your morning toast might be better done in the toaster. However, cooking a roast for dinner can easily be accomplished in a toaster oven, and energy will be saved in the process.

The Space Issue

There is no question when it comes to the toaster oven’s ability to save on space. A toaster oven is typically 1/4 the size of a standard oven and that can be very important when dealing with a small kitchen. This also makes the toaster oven very portable which means that it can easily be moved back and forth between storage and counter top, as needed. Keep in mind however, that a toaster oven should never be setup against the wall as it can get very hot in that area.

The Maintenance Issue

Maintaining a toaster oven is much easier than maintaining the standard size oven, as long as it is done properly. Make sure that the oven is cooled down completely before cleaning it. Check for a nonstick coating on the inside of the oven. If a nonstick coat is present, use soap and water to clean it out. Strong chemicals can eat away at the coating, removing it permanently. Keep in mind that most toaster ovens have a removable tray at the bottom that is used to catch crumbs. Simply remove the tray, empty the crumbs, wipe out the tray and place it back into the appropriate slot.

The Convection Option

While the next fact isn’t standard in all toaster ovens, it is typical in many. Convection ovens have always been something to be desired by those who frequent the kitchen, but they have always been very expensive. Many toaster ovens now include a convection option which simply means that the owner of a toaster oven will have easy access to a portable convection oven as well. Anyone who knows what a convection oven is capable of knows that cooking times can be cut in half when a convection oven is used properly. Keep in mind however, that using the convection oven option will require definite adjustments to the cooking time, and technique, if food is to be prepared properly.

Good Meat Slicer for Home Use

Food-SlicerA meat slicer is a great way to save money and time when cooking. When you buy roasts or large cuts of meat you can slice the meat prior to freezing. This way you plan can use the meats for several meals. When freezing large batches of vegetables it helps to slice tomatoes, carrots, potatoes, and other vegetables for easy packing. A meat slicer shaves ham and other meats or poultry thin for serving at dinner instead of using a carving knife.

The Chefs Choice International 627 VariTilt Food Slicer tilts to make it easy to slice meats and cheese. The special 30 degree tilting lets you slice fruit, bread, and vegetables with ease. The 7 inch stainless steel blade is easy to clean and remove for consumers. The thickness knob adjusts letting you slice thin to a thickness of about 3/5 of an inch. It is not recommended to clean parts in the dishwasher. It comes with a plastic tray for food when slicing.

Continental PS77711 Professional Series Deli Slicer is a made with of stainless steel and cast iron for durability. This machine has a 150 watt motor that gives its power to slice meats, cheese, and vegetables. The blade is very sharp and slices meats extra thin when desired.. It is easy to clean with a wet cloth. Some parts have to be removed using a screw driver. Plastic parts may be needed to be replaced.

Chefs Choice 610 Food Slicer is made of with aluminum and stainless steel. It has a high powered motor and seven inch steel blade that slices thin to 3/4 inches thick. It is a large size and has the capacity to tilt giving you fast accurate slicing. All parts are easy to remove and clean. It is classified as a premium food slicer. It easily slices extra large roasts, or hams with ease.

MamiMatic EMT-503 Elite Gourmet Food Slicer is made of die cast aluminum and is black. This model slices cold cuts, meats, cheese, and vegetables very thin or up to 1/2 inch thick. It has a 75 inch steel blade that is easy to remove. This model has a food tray for food items when slicing. The plastic parts break and may need to be replaced. Overall this works well for common food items. It is easy to clean.

Chef Choice 615 Premium Food Slicer is made of stainless steel and cast aluminum. The stainless steel blade slices thin and up to 3/4 inches thick. All parts are easy to to remove for cleaning. It is easy to use to slice meats or cheese for large trays or platters. A serving tray is included with this machine. It slices large roasts and hams with ease for holidays and entertaining. It is easy to clean and take apart.

A electric food slicer is a handy tool for home cooks that want to prepare meats and vegetable to freeze. The added bonus is that it slices the food thin for various recipes.

How to Find the Best Bread Machine

How-to-Find-the-Best-Bread-MachineFor homeowners that wish to make their own home made bread, making the decision of acquiring a bread machine is an excellent idea. A bread machine can automatically make home bread effortlessly, all that is required from the user is the correct measurements of ingredients and the proper customization of the program, in order to receive the desired results. With that said the type of bread machine you will purchase will vary in price from approximately $50-$300, all depending on the type of bread you wish to create. Here are a few things to consider when comparing bread machines.

Loaves created from bread machines contain no added synthetic preservatives like the ones used in commercially available bread and as such, it does not last as very long in comparison. One thing to consider when comparing bread machines is how big of a loaves you need. The typical bread machine creates loaves ranging from 1-5 pounds. While there are a few machines that cater to one specific size such as 1.5 pounds, which is sufficient for a family of 2-4 people, there’s a wide selection of machines that offer the selection of up to 2-3 sizes.

All bread machines offer some level of programming, while the traditional programming usually only consisted of selecting the option of light or dark crust, kneed dough without baking, etc, with the advent of modern innovations, many manufacturers now offer a deeper level of customization. Some bread machines offer a more sophisticated level of programming that gives the user an option of creating specific types of breads such as: art breads, sweet breads, french breads and many more. They are able to do this because some bread machines have built in programs that give details of the specific ingredients needed to create your bread of choice, along with a time indicator that signals the best time to add those specific ingredients during the process.

While the traditional bread makers were recognized upon site due to the fact that it created only one specific shape of bread. Modern bread machines can cater to a wide variety of sizes and shapes of loaves, ranging from the commonly known rectangular commercially available loaves, down to more horizontal loaves that’s mostly associated with subway’s infamous 12 inch footlong. Some machines even give the option of creating other things such as pizza dough, cakes and even Jam.

So in a nutshell whenever you’re comparing bread machines, the three main things you need to consider are the shapes of the breads you will need such as vertical or horizontal, the weight of the bread you need and the level of customization you require.

De’Longhi 2.2 lb Cool-Touch Roto Deep Fryer

De-LonghiDoes the thought of a deep fryer for your kitchen sound messy to you? Have you tried a home fryer and thought, no thanks? As much as you may like fried food for special occasions, the mess can make you order out! Splattered oil all over the kitchen is simply not a draw for busy families, and when you are entertaining, the very last thing you need is more mess! But, now you really have no excuse. There is a product, the De’Longhi 2.2 Roto Deep Fryer, that will completely change your mind about home-based deep fryers. Check out the following amazing features!

Closed unit

Since it is a closed unit, the clean up does not feel so overwhelming. And the clean oil draining system makes the whole process a breeze. Not an easy thing to say after my history with attempts at fried foods! All you need to do is pull out the attached hose that is stored in the front of the fryer and then drain the used oil into an oil collecting container. Easy, safe and not even a fraction of the messy ordeal I used to deal with when cooking fried treats.

Filtration system

There is a dual filtration system complete with replacement filters to aid in cleanup. The filtration also does wonders for the lingering odors of frying food at home. This perk is easy to miss if you have never attempted fried foods at home. If you have, then the difference is amazing. Now you can actually surprise your friends with a yummy selection of fried foods without letting the odors give it away first!

Safety features

Aside from easy clean up and odor free cooking, safety is another big concern with frying foods. Thankfully with this unit there is nothing to worry about. The non-slip feet and cool touch exterior calm my fears and the nifty magnetic cord is a wonderful feature. If the cord is ever pulled on by a child, or snagged by a clumsy cook, it detaches easily.

Temperature controls

Being able to easily set the thermostat between 300 and 370 degrees means your food will turn out just the way you expect each and every time. If you want to check on the foods while cooking, just peak into the windowed lid to view the progress.

Compact enough

Although this unit has a generous 2.5 pound capacity, it is compact and takes up little room on your counter. But if you do need to move the unit, the stay-cool exterior walls and handy side handles are completely safe to touch, even while frying your favorite foods.

Great gift idea

When you need to find a gift for that hard to by young adult or family that has everything, this is the perfect idea. Wrap it up with a few dishtowels and it will be a guaranteed hit! College kids and empty nest adults alike will enjoy this unique gift. It will be like giving them an ongoing gift of inexpensive treats! Egg rolls, onion petals, french fries and even concoctions like fried Twinkies can be popped in the unit for impressive meals every time. And every time they enjoy their delicious food, they will think of you!

Overall, the De’Longhi 2.2 lb Roto Deep Fryer is well worth the price. It is a sturdy, value packed unit that will quickly pay for itself with the money you will save from not have to order for take-out. Try new recipes, experiment with fun party foods and all without the mess or hassle of typical home frying methods.

Top 5 Best Electric Meat Grinders Reviews In 2015

Meat-GrinderWalking through the meat section of the grocery store, you look at the ground beef and it just doesn’t look appetizing. It is a beautiful day for grilling hamburgers,but will this meat be worth the price you are paying? Now is the time to purchase a meat grinder. You can grind your own meat and have much better hamburgers to serve friends and family. These are 5 of the best meat grinders for you to choose from:

STX INTERNATIONAL STX-3000-TF Turboforce 3-Speed Electric Meat Grinder

This 3000 watt meat grinder comes with many attachments to create the meat you desire. It is a large grinder that gives you the ability to make quick work of the grinding you need. This grinder has a top rated customer satisfaction, and comes with a 1 year, 100% guarantee.

Sunmile 1HP 5# Stainless Steel Electric Meat Grinder SM-G33

The Sunmile is fully wrapped in versatile stainless steel. It performs with precision and high speed, grinding up to 170 pounds of meat in 1 hour. At full capacity, it uses 800 watts of power. The Sunmile comes equipped with 1 set of stainless plates, 1 stainless blade, and other attachments.

STX INTERNATIONAL STX-3000-MF Megaforce Patented Air Cooled Electric Meat Grinder

Similar to the first STX grinder in that it operates on 3000 watts of meat grinding power, and also comes with a wide variety of attachments. This STX grinder has a patented air cooling system which allows you to work with meat to your heart’s desire. Have no worry of the grinder getting too hot. It also comes with a 100%, 1 year guarantee.

LEM Products .75 HP Stainless Steel Electric Meat Grinder

LEM makes this meat grinder that is great for heavy usage. The gears are metal, unlike plastic in many other grinders. This grinder comes with a full range of accessories and carries a 2 year warranty on parts and labor.

STX INTERNATIONAL STX-1800-MG Magnum Patented Air Cooled Electric Meat Grinder

This is very similar to the other STX meat grinders. It is also air cooled, but has an added feature that gives it a huge advantage. This grinder comes with an added tomato juicer. Many cooks and chefs add tomato juice to their meats. this gives you the tools that top chefs use. Add fresh tomato juice to your ground meat before cooking.

All of these grinders are great buys and can save you time and expense overall in the kitchen.

Best Electric & Gas Tankless Water Heater Buying Guide

Tankless Water HeaterFar more space and energy efficient than those big bulky tanks, tankless water heaters are the way to go if you are looking for a better way to heat the water in your home while keeping a bit more money in your pockets.

The Stiebel Eltron Tempra 20 Plus is one of the most advanced tankless water heaters available. This very reliable water heater features a clean design that does require ventilation, so it will fit just about anywhere you need it to. It also boast digital controls and is estimated to save anywhere between 15%-20% on your energy costs.

Designed specifically for outdoor use, the Eccotemp L10 High Capacity Outdoor Tankless Water Heater is a permanent solution for the cabin. It comes with a CSA approved 9″ gas regulator and hose to be used with a standard 20lb grill style tank, a garden hose adapter, as well as a stainless steel cap for collecting rain water. The L10 also keeps safety in mind with an automatic shutoff feature.

The EcoSmart 11 KW Electric Tankless Water Heater is worth a look as it comes with a host of attractive features at a very affordable price. The EcoSmart comes with self-modulating technology and allows the user to modulate the temperature of the water in 1 degree increments, giving you fine control over how hot the water is. It also claims savings of up to 60% for your water heating costs and even comes with a lifetime warranty.

If camping is your thing, look at the Eccotemp L5 Portable Tankless Water Heater and Outdoor Shower. This relatively lightweight heater runs on liquid propane and ignites with a 2 D cell battery, making it perfect for that weekend at the cabin or a refreshing shower in the woods. For a portable machine, the Ecotemp L5 is a solid contender, pumping out a minimum flow of 0.3 liters per minute.

The Ecosmart ECO 27 Electric Tankless Water Heater is another fantastic choice for home use. Never letting your shower water run cold, the ECO 27 is capable of heating 3 gallons of water per minute, all while saving you as much as 60% in water heating cost. This unit features EcoSmart’s patented self-modulating technology, but also lets you decide on the temperature of the water in 1 degree increments. And the ECO 27 is backed by a lifetime warranty,so you can trust Ecosmart to support you.

In this economy, we all need ways to save a few bucks. Tankless water heaters are a great way to lower the overall costs of running your home, as well as realizing drastically improved performance over traditional water heaters. Ditch the tank and go start saving today.

How To Compare Bread Machines

How-to-Compare-Bread-Machines-1024x819A bread machine is a wise and excellent purchase. You can have fresh bread for our toast in the morning and warm, fresh rolls with dinner. Because you are making the bread yourself, you will know exactly what is going into it. This can be helpful if you have family members who have allergies to certain foods. When you decide to purchase a bread machine, it is important to know how to compare the various models. You should know what to look for in your potential purchase.

Loaf Size

When choosing a bread machine, you want to know what size loaf you want. Bread machines models will make 1 pound, 1 ? pound, and 2 pound loaves. You should choose a bread machine to fit your needs. If you are unsure of the loaf size that you will want, or if you will want various sizes, it is best to get a larger model. Be sure however, that you have the counter space for a machine that is very large.

Loaf Shape

If you are very particular about the shape of your loaves of bread, you should look at the different models available and find the bread machine that will make the loaf shape that you want. If you want loaves that are long and horizontal like the bread that you find in a store, you should find a bread machine that makes that shape loaf. If the shape of the loaf is not that big of a deal, you can find a machine that is less expensive and makes oblong, vertical loaves.

Timer Options

When choosing a bread machine, you should keep in mind when you want the bread baked. If you choose a model with a timer, you can load the machine with the necessary ingredients and set the timer. This option will allow you to wake up to fresh baked bread for toast or come home from work to fresh bread to serve with butter at dinner. If you are home all day or if you do not mind waiting for the bread to bake, you can find a less expensive model that does not have a timer.

The Bread Pan

When comparing bread machines, you need to know what kind of bread you want to make. If you like bread that has a thick, dark crust, you should find a model with a cast-aluminum pan. If you prefer your bread with a lighter, thinner crust, a machine with a thin aluminum pan is best.

While purchasing a bread machine may seem simple, you need to compare models if you are going to get the type of bread that you prefer.

Top 5 Kitchen Appliances Everyone Should Have

Kitchen-AppliancesWhen buyer a new home or even redecorating, one of the primary spaces in the home is the kitchen. Not only should one look at the spacial organization of the kitchen but one should also pay attention to the key appliances that one expects to use on a regular basis in the kitchen. Five of the key kitchen appliances will be discussed below with some creative ways one may use each appliance in the new age traditional kitchen.

Refrigerator

The staple appliance in every kitchen has evolved to include many functions beside just storing food. There are a number of smart refrigerators on the market that have the ability to electronically keep track of the contents and provide you an list that can be linked with your smart tablet. Some come with a television in the front panel as well as a wifi link to your i-pad in case you want your next recipe read out to you aloud.

Stove/Oven

The oven range should be selected for function as well as style. Self cleaning units are a must these days and one should explore their preference including open flame ranges or heating elements.

Dishwasher

The most used appliance in the kitchen by far should be selected for its capacity as well as its durability. Newer models also have run silent modes and provide easy to load capabilities.

Microwave

Microwaves are just as popular as the ovens and are probably the main appliance for heating food. The other benefit is that it is safer for younger adults to use and provide parents with a peace of mind knowing that the worst a child could do would be to make a mess of the microwave.

Toaster/Toaster Oven

A popular breakfast item, the traditional toaster has evolved into a mini oven its self. Great for preparing quick bagels or french toast, it is a staple of the kitchen and should be selected for its range of heating as well as timing options.

Conclusion

Each one of the appliances mentioned above can be selected to be color coordinated with the kitchen decor or simply with each of the respective appliances. Functionality and personal preference should be the paramount driving element in the final choice though.

Excalibur Food Dehydrator – 5 Tray Dehydrator Tested – Ultimate Home Jerky Machine

Excalibur-5-Tray-DehydratorWhen cooking is a desirable element for an individual or family, one item that might be missing from the kitchen is a dehydrator. A dehydrator allows an individual to remove the moisture from food, which not only ensures the food lasts longer but it makes it possible to use the dehydrated food in trail mixes and a wide variety of other foods as well. The Excalibur Excalibur 5 Tray Dehydrator with Timer offers five tray compartments with a total of eight square feet of drying space. It also has a built in on and off switch along with the ability to adjust 26 hours of cooking time, so it is possible for an individual to cook while at work or sleeping.
The Excalibur Excalibur 5 Tray Dehydrator with Timer has desirable reviews, as it averages out 4.6 stars out of 5, and 17 of the 24 different reviewers gave it the full five stars.

Janet Smith, who rated the device five stars stated, “Love this dehydrator. We have used it almost daily since receiving it. Haven’t had a bit of trouble and the food seems to dehydrate quickly and evenly.” BlueArmada, who rating it five stars said “I bought this for my husband, and he loves it. He likes the fact that you can change settings to match the food that your drying,” while Wendy Hendrix said “I ordered this for my husband and he loves it. He’s tried everything from pears to fish and says it works great.”

The equipment is small and easy to use. It takes up very little space but is able to offer eight square feet of drying capabilities. It also has a power switch, so an individual can turn off the equipment whenever they desire, and not to mention it also has a 26 hour cooking time, so a user is able to adjust the temperature and set it to dry even while the user goes to work or is sleeping. This way, the user doesn’t have to be around all the time to utilize the equipment.
The biggest con is that it does not have a clear cover so a user is not able to see inside of the device. For many devices, it is possible to monitor the progress without opening it. For this, it is just bet to following the cooking instructions and refrain from opening the equipment.
For anyone who enjoys drying food, extending the life of their food products and simply transform their food into jerky or trail mix, the Excalibur is an excellent option available to them.

Other resources:

Dehydrator Recipes
Drying food without a dehydrator

Other methods

Bed dryers
Drum drying
Freeze Drying
Shelf dryers