Cooking can be a struggle, particularly when you’re tired after a long day working or studying; somehow cooking just doesn’t fit into our daily schedules anymore. The temptation to turn to unhealthy ready meals or takeaways can sometimes be all too much.
A study of 30,000 British households in 2013 showed that spending on frozen foods was up by 11%, and spending on chilled ready meals was up by 19%. Also, the report showed that the time families have to spend in the kitchen preparing meals is now almost half of what it was in the 1990s. Despite these figures, the kitchen still remains the heart of the home, for socialising rather than cooking it seems. Mulberry Kitchens says they have seen more people than ever investing in their kitchens in recent years, so why not make the most out of the new kitchen space and cook more?
We know that home-cooked food is much healthier and cheaper than the frozen or takeaway option, but motivation and time constraints can often be the problem. Here are 5 cutting-edge gadgets that could help shave some excess time off food preparation, and help us all love spending more time in the kitchen.
Microwave Pasta Cooker – The Original Fasta Pasta
The Fasta Pasta is a neat design for saving time and ensuring you prepare perfect pasta every time.
Not only does the ‘microwave-cooker’ save on cooking time, but it also cuts out the waiting when making pasta. No longer will you need to wait for water to boil in the pan, continuously stir or use a colander to drain your pasta. You simply load the dish with the type of pasta you want to cook, add the correct amount of water as labelled with measuring lines, and then put it in the microwave. This leaves you free to prepare a great sauce, salad, or dessert at the same time.
The added bonus is that you are also spared washing up as the Fasta Pasta dish has an added drainer and is also dishwasher safe.
Zojirushi NP-NVC10 Pressure Rice Cooker and Warmer
Staying with the theme of saving time and getting perfect results, Zojirushi have plenty of rice cookers on the market. The NP-NVC10 is one of the newest models and allows you to effortlessly cook rice like a professional.
The machine is incredibly smart and features artificial intelligence to remember previous cooking experiences, meaning that you will get the same great results every time.
Cooking under pressure produces a softer rice which is easier to digest as well as being more satisfying. Whilst the rice cooker can seem a little pricy at over £100, the technology you are paying for is second to none. Gone are the days where your rice is either too sticky or too dry, which is great news for the rice fans out there.
Chadwick Pizza Oven
Homemade pizza is fantastic, but making it can be a long and laborious process. Pizza need not be unhealthy, but throwing a readymade pizza in the oven leads to consuming large amounts of salt.
The Chadwick Pizza Oven is a brilliant alternative and boasts that it can cook a pizza in just 4 minutes. The sleekly designed oven heats up on gas stove whilst you roll out your dough and add tomato, cheese, and your favourite toppings. Once you are ready, you can place the pizza in the cooker and be ready to eat a deliciously thin and crispy Italian style pizza in the time it takes to load the dishwasher.
The Vegetable Spirali is an excellent gadget to make dishes healthier, and to encourage you and your family to get your 5-a-day.
The Spirali makes spaghetti style spirals from vegetables which can easily be added to salads, stir fry dishes and coleslaws. The sturdy and satisfying mechanism allows you to feed in vegetables and turn the handle to run them through three different cutting blades. The process is highly efficient and leaves you with very little waste product.
The Spirali allows you to reap the health benefits of adding more vegetables to your meals in a creative and ecological way.
Omega J8006 Nutrition Centre Juicer
Whilst not strictly for cooking, the Omega juicer will make your fruit juice accompaniment to any meal fantastic.
The Omega prides itself on having a slow, ‘masticating style’ mechanism which squeezes the fruit that is added more precisely. As opposed to blending and grinding fruit, the squeezing process preserves the great healthy nutrients and enzymes found in fruit. The process also prevents oxidisation of your fruit juice meaning it will last longer when stored in the fridge. By making larger batches of juice at a time that will keep longer, you will save time and money!
The 5 cutting edge gadgets mentioned above are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the exciting tech that’s on the market to stop you relying on convenience foods. So whilst you might be dead tired after a long day and really not in the mood for cooking, or you don’t think you can cook at all, you now have no excuse to reach for the takeaway menu. And who knows, after a while you may enjoy being in the kitchen so much you might want to spend even more time in there…