Last week I was sorting out some cupboards and drawers in the kitchen perhaps (at the back of my mind where fluff gathers) looking for space. It hit me then how lockdown had affected me in an unexpected way. I had been buying things which is unlike me because I'm as mean as sin. But then, as they say, the devil finds work for idle hands—or those stuck in lockdown.
These are a small selection of things bought whilst temporarily insane
Two egg coddlers. Why? I read about coddled eggs in a book and was immediately intrigued. Coddled eggs sounded so warm and soothing in the winter of lockdown. Coddled eggs, it rolls off the tongue. Were they worth it? In one sense no. They’re basically boiled eggs sans shell and they don’t slip out as easily as advertised however liberally you butter them. Mind you, they are nice and buttery and perfect if you want to cook eggs with a topping like spinach, cheese, cream, or perhaps all three.
Two ‘toasties’. How many of you still have one of those Breville cheese toasty machines ie two slices of bread crammed with cheese and onion/ham/ etc sealed and toasted on both sides? The end result is predictably wonderful, but cleaning and maintenance is pernickety hell. We retrieved ours from the bottom of a drawer on a whim and found the inside covered in mould. Gorganzola toasties are not to everyone’s taste, so it went in the bin. But the contraptions above have, in fairness, proved brilliant. The bread and filling are sandwiched in them and then placed on a hob, turning after five minutes or so. End result as good as a Breville and child’s play to clean. They might work even better over a fire.
The Jean Patrique ‘Whatever Pan’ is as good as advertised, great for chargrilling, needs little or no fat and can be used in the oven. I read some reviews moaning how the handles got hot, presumably from those who hadn't heard of oven gloves.
The Bake Stone: a must for those who love welsh cakes. I’ve used it once but the results were not brilliant—my fault not that of the bakestone. I got the mix wrong, nice enough but chewy. Shop bought ones are more convenient but nowhere near as nice those made by one who knows what he’s doing. Memo to self. Try again.
And—God bless it—the salad spinner for those who want to wash their green leaves. Never thought I’d want one of these in my rock and roll years, but it makes a nice whizzy whizzy sound when you spin it.
Has anyone else experienced a similar madness? It would be nice to know it isn't just me.