Friday, April 29, 2016

Foodie Friday-Helpful Kitchen Gadgets

As my illnesses have progressed, it's been difficult for me to prepare meals. I enjoy cooking and baking, and I have found a few tools that make it easier for me, so I thought I'd share them with you.

One of the first things I purchased was a mini food processor. I just love it! I mainly use if for chopping vegetables for use in soups, casseroles or other recipes, but I know you can use it for many more things.You do have to do some initial cutting of larger food pieces, but it's not nearly the amount you'd need to do otherwise. I believe mine was about $30, and it was worth every penny. Here's the one I have:

Another kitchen appliance I have is a KitchenAid stand mixer. No doubt, this was a major purchase; but I got it on sale at Target, and I think I paid around $280. KitchenAid has so many models and colors to choose from, I, of course, have a red one to go along with my black and red kitchen theme. You can buy a variety of accessories, but so far, I haven't found I needed them. I love to bake, and last Christmas was so much easier having my stand mixer. It's obviously much easier than stirring by hand, but I was surprised at how much easier it was than using a hand mixer. My arms are weak and holding up a hand mixer for even a minute or so was just too difficult. It's also nice to be able to add your ingredients and step away if you need to, something that you cannot do with a hand mixer.  Even if you don't bake, there are many uses for a stand mixer. I use it to shred cooked meat quite often. Here's a blog post I ran across that lists some of the many uses for a stand mixer (she also gives some information about different models). 12 Creative Ways to Use a Kitchenaid Mixer. Obviously, not everyone would need or use a stand mixer; however, if you are someone who would use one and you've been on the fence about whether or not it would be worth it, I have found it to be a purchase I don't regret. Plus, it looks good on my kitchen counter, don't you think?

There are many kitchen utensils and gadgets made specifically for people with disabilities. A Google search of Kitchen aids for disabled persons returned over 30 million results! If you are having difficulty preparing meals, ask your primary care doctor for a referral to an occupational therapist. Occupational therapists assist patients with activities of daily living. They can do an evaluation and help you find the techniques and tools you need to help make life easier. They also teach exercises to help strengthen weak muscles and teach individuals ways of moving to help conserve energy and reduce pain. 

A few more things. In case you missed it, I did a post on Crockpot cooking. You can find it here: Foodie Friday-Crockpot Cooking. I am not being paid or compensated in any way by Kitchenaid or Cuisinart; I'm just giving an honest review of the particular products that I own. Something else, I hope none of you find the word disabled offensive. I use editing software, and it tells me that this is no longer a politically correct term. But, from what I've read, many people with physical challenges much prefer that term to some of the others that are currently in use. I'm sure it's one of those things that's just a matter of opinion. 

Happy cooking!

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