Saturday, January 9, 2010

Fun food allergy Christmas gifts

Before I had Ainsley, I never knew what to say when people asked what I wanted for Christmas or my birthday. I am not one of those people who enjoys collecting purses, jewelry, perfumes, shoes, DVDs, CDs, or anything like that (believe me, Dave is quite happy that he married a girl like me! I have saved him a lot of money over the years). So I have always had to think of random things for them to get me - but it was never anything that I really had to have.

Since we discovered Ainsley's allergies and I began (slowly) learning how to cook and bake from scratch, however, I have discovered the fun world of cookbooks, kitchen gadgets, and appliances, and all of a sudden I had things I really, really wanted - or even needed - that I could put on my Christmas and birthday list.

This Christmas I got a great haul of these items, including: the Food Allergy Mama's Baking Book, a new food processor (old one died), a new hand mixer (Leighton threw away one of the beaters to my old one, and a one-beater mixer is not very effective), an immersion blender (I saw this on someone else's blog and thought it looked really cool), and a Belgian waffle iron (I looooove Belgian waffles).

So far I've used all of them except the immersion blender, which I plan to break out next time I make soup. I've even combined gifts: I used the waffle recipe from the baking book to make waffles using my waffle iron and have also made her berry breakfast smoothie in my new food processor (I have resolved that our family will eat a healthier breakfast in 2010 so I've been feeding them bran muffins and smoothies every weekday morning; I break out the waffle maker on weekends).

The fact that Ainsley's entire family, including the grandmothers, is cooking more means that I also have more ideas for gifts for them than I did before. This year I got my mom a new cake pan and cookie sheet because the ones she uses now are really old, and she was really excited.

Any cool kitchen gadgets/appliances you love? I am always interested in hearing what gets used a lot in other kitchens.


Anonymous said...

Let me know how you like your food processor... I only have a blender and am thinking about getting one. Also an immersion blender. I looooove soup, but don't usually make creamy ones, but if I had an immersion blender I might! I'm also thinking about getting one of those rolling pins that that are one piece, without handles, bakers say those are the best. Do you use one? I don't have any suggestions for you, sorry, the stuff I use is pretty basic. I do love my hand (plunger) chopper- not sure the proper name for it. Elena

hannah lyn said...

i also need to buy a food processor. the only kitchen gadget that gets used multiple times a day in my house is one of those round apple slicer/corers with handles on the side, that you position over the top of the apple and push down. my kids can't get enough apples and pears these days, so i find myself slicing them up with that thing all day long! it's not fancy, but i love it. :)

Leigha said...

Elena, I had no idea that the one-piece rolling pins are supposed to be better. The kids' baking kit you got Ainsley has a small one of those for kids, but mine has handles. Let me know if you get one and like it.

So far I really, really like the food processor. It purees things much better than my old blender did (but my blender was terrible).

I really need a hand chopper. I still chop everything with a knife. I will put that on my birthday list.

Hannah, we have an apple slicer too and that is one of our most-used devices!

Mamma Sarah said...

I love my kitchenaid mixer i got for Christmas 2 years ago. This year my folks bought me the pasta maker attachment so I can't wait to make some allergy friendly pasta!! fresh pasta!!! I also love the Magic Bullet. Perfect size for baby food based on what we are eating for dinner and also for a single serve smoothy! Mmmm... now I want one!

Anonymous said...

It is not really a gadget, but I love the window herb garden I got last month. Herbs are really expensive, and this is really simple. No gardening expertise required.

Karen said...

My little hand mixer died, I am sad.