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If you’re a foodie, having a kitchen packed with culinary gadgets is either a dream you hope to achieve one day, or an ambition you’ve already fulfilled.
In either case, it’s important to think about not only how to acquire the equipment that will make your gastronomical experiments more successful, but also how to maximize the impact of items already in your cupboards.
It’s tempting to assume that you’ll be able to get to grips with a given piece of food and beverage equipment just through your own intuition, or even trial and error.
However, reading the instruction manual that comes with even the simplest kitchen gadget can make a big difference, not only in terms of how effectively you can use it, but also from a safety perspective.
The paperwork will come with crucial maintenance tips, which you’ll need to follow to stop premature wear and tear taking your precious cooking accouterments out of action.
You could even find that the manufacturer has included some suggestions for recipes to try out using their product which are a good introduction to what it can do. If you’ve already thrown out the instructions, a quick online search should let you find a digital copy.
Only ever buying new food and beverage equipment isn’t just expensive; it’s also an issue from a sustainability perspective.
Given that the market for second hand gadgets is vast, there’s really no excuse for overlooking this avenue.
If you’re not confident about buying used gadgets from generic online marketplaces, you should try Revelation Machinery’s auctions for a more focused experience.
We touched on the maintenance requirements of this type of equipment earlier, and it’s worth noting that performance will be compromised if parts are left in place once they’ve exceeded their usable lifespan.
So for mixers and processors with dull blades, or any food prep gadget with old and tired components, buying and installing replacements rather than continuing to use it unaltered, or replacing the entire unit outright, is the best choice.
Just because you’ve got more gadgets for preparing food and drink, that doesn’t mean you’ll get better results or make optimal use of every item in your collection. It is particularly true if you aren’t discerning in terms of the brands you buy, and instead put affordability at the top of the agenda each time.
It’s better to focus your budget on buying a few high-quality items from respected and reputable brands, rather than going for bargain basement equivalents.
If in doubt, read customer reviews and professional coverage of equipment to get a sense of whether a manufacturer is deserving of its reputation.
This also applies to the versatility of the devices in question. A good food processor with lots of different attachments can do more than having lots of separate gadgets that are only fit for one specific task.
A mistake that a lot of people make during food preparation, especially when they’ve got equipment involved in the process, is failing to take into account the amount of time it takes to get different ingredients needed for a recipe ready to go.
Rather than risking delays or realizing that you don’t have some vital ingredient right before it needs to go in to cook, make sure to get all of your prep done in advance. That way your experience of cooking will be more akin to what you see on food shows, where each ingredient is there, waiting to be added with the flick of the wrist.
If your equipment breaks down or starts behaving erratically, rather than attempting a potentially complex repair job yourself, consider outsourcing this to a pro.
There are plenty of workshops out there that will be able to fix common faults and prolong the lifespan of a gadget.
You should also check to see whether the manufacturer’s warranty is still in effect, in which case you might be able to return the gadget to its original producer and have it fixed up free of charge.
There’s no point settling for second best when it comes to food and beverage equipment. Choose the items you own wisely, don’t cut corners or dedicate space to objects you rarely use, and you’ll find that your love of food prep flourishes.