This was a birthday gift from my very good friend, Marie. Isn’t it just so great? I love it!! Marie was so excited to give it to me – of course she had it custom made for me and was disappointed they couldn’t fit Mary Frances (nine is their maximum letter amount) – but no matter. I was using extra pitchers to hold my utensils but they get narrower at the top so what they can hold is limited. This, besides being beautiful, holds a ton, as the mouth is the same circumference as the bottom. And of course, it always starts a conversation in my kitchen! LOVE it!
Engaging stories of love, joy, comfort and friendship with proven scrumptious, healthy recipes, we celebrate LOVE as the secret ingredient for wonderful food!
Do you wear aprons? I do – all the time. I really don’t want to spend the time getting olive oil splatters out of my clothes. I also use the ends to dry my hands quickly and this one is extra long with room to do that. So I thought that maybe you’d like a LOVE-the secret ingredient apron too! It can remind us all to cook with LOVE! And with Valentine’s Day coming up, this could be the perfect little gift! It’s beautifully embroidered, 100% heavy-weight cotton twill fabric and of course, machine washable, with adjustable neck strap and two front pockets. Click on this link to order one now.
Our wonderful friend, Carl, presented this gift to us at lunch last week. He was so excited! He was recently visiting Berlin and saw a kitchen shop there near the train station and knew he had to run in and see if he could find this for us.
Steve and I looked at one another. We were perplexed.
Certainly for him to think of us while he was vacationing in the Eastern Block was so generous of him but what the hell was this thing? And Carl was oh so very careful in taking it out of the bag and setting it on the table.
At our lunch together the last time, we had this big discussion on eggs! The variety of ways to cook them, how wonderful creamy and dreamy local farm fresh eggs taste these days and how not to have them crack when making hard or soft boiled eggs.
Well, this is an egg piercer!
When you unlock it by twisting it, a needle pops up. You place the raw egg on this baby and pierce a hole, to prevent it from cracking when boiling it.
Isn’t that cool?
I suppose, if you’re really a Martha Stewart or Sandra Lee, around Easter time, you could pierce both ends and blow out the eggs and paint and enamel them for eternity, or make Christmas ornaments, or whatever. Now I see people even hanging painted and colored eggs from trees at Easter!
So, my husband, Steve, makes breakfast for both of us during the week. I only do it on weekends. (Yes he is a sweetie.) So this is his tool. I think he’s getting used to it. He’s only broken one egg.
Okay so now I can tell you, we really went to the Le Creuset outlet store to buy a birthday present for our oldest son, who is quite a good cook. I think he’s even better than me! (Both of my boys have a certain confidence that is unmatched. (The older one is a “big” flavor guy while the younger one applies his spices and flavors more gingerly.)
Now I couldn’t tell you this until we gave it to him, because I never know when my kids are reading this blog. So we got him this gorgeous red, oval cast iron skillet. It is big, unusual and heavy. Zach said he would love it because his stovetop in Brooklyn is small. You could roast two whole red snappers in this or even two 3 lb. chickens.
We had his birthday dinner (menu to come) last Sunday and this is what he emailed to me on Tuesday evening. The subject line was “Maiden Voyage.”
We had to be in Boston on Monday and on the way back to NYC, I suggested we plan to stop at Clinton Corners in CT. There’s a discount Le Creuset store there and that’s pretty much heaven to me!
I bought a new skillet and even new orange (my favorite color) hot pads. I’m telling you, I’m so happy, I feel like I have a whole new kitchen. It doesn’t take a whole lot to get me excited. I’m a cheap date.
Le Creuset is one of my favorite cookware manufacturers. I have a huge covered French oven that I just adore. Food cooked in it actually tastes better! It’s enamel coated cast iron and very easy to clean. The one drawback is that it is very heavy. But hey, it’s building the biceps!
I once cooked a huge party size serving of meatballs and had to split the recipe. Half of them simmered in my Le Creuset and the other half simmered in a copper bottomed stainless steel stew pot. (my mother’s from the ‘60’s) The Le Creuset pot was infinitely better!! Really. The meatballs and tomato sauce had deeper, richer flavors. It’s true and I’m not even paid to say this! I think the cast iron distributes the heat more evenly and this pot with the enamel coating locks in the moisture to create super tender morsels of meat and incredibly flavorful vegetables. It’s perfect for beef bourguignon, chilis and stews of any kind.
Now Le Creuset has come out with an industrial strength non-stick coated 3-ply stainless steel line and that’s the skillet I just bought. It’s lighter with deep sides and fantastic! I cut my tendon in my left hand some years ago while cutting ribs (don’t ask) and while I totally regained the bendability of my middle finger, I never really regained the strength in that hand, so lighter is better.
Once again the heat distribution and browning capabilities are terrific! Check out that zucchini in the photo.
If you have a favorite skillet or cookware line, please tell me about it.