Review: Mario Batali Italian Essentials 4qt Dutch Oven – Cast Iron With Porcelain Enamel Finish Dutch Oven

Mario Batali 4qt Dutch OvenThe Mario Batali 4qt Dutch Oven takes the secrets of cooking from generations ago and makes them modern.

This Dutch oven begins with cast iron construction at its core, which will create a fast and stable heating environment for anything you put inside of it. Making it easier to clean and use on any stovetop is the porcelain enamel finish on both the inside and the outside. Not only is the finish more stovetop friendly, but it also makes clean up a lot easier as porcelain is much more simple to clean than cast iron.

If you are looking for durability and a heavy-duty pot, you will not find one that fits the bill more than this. Weighing in at 16.5 lbs, this 4-quart pot has the weight to back up its boasts.

Another benefit of the construction style of this Dutch oven is that once you are done cooking, you can move this pot right to the tabletop. Simply set a trivet down and the outer porcelain enamel will be an attractive addition to your table while the cast iron core will keep the food inside nice and warm.

Mario Batali 4qt Dutch Oven Assorted ColorsAdditionally, this is a self-basting oven pot. Because of the construction of the lid, whatever you put in the Dutch oven, and then into your oven, will stay nice and moist. The lid is lined with self-basting spikes, which continue to drip liquid back onto the food, keeping it moist and fresh.

The Mario Batali 4qt Dutch Oven is available in 4 gorgeous colors, persimmon, Chianti, espresso and Pesto.

What We Like:

  • This pot heats evenly and quickly.
  • It can be used on all styles of stovetops.
  • It can be used in the oven as well as on the stovetop.
  • The 4 quart size is one that will get a lot of use.

Other Things to Consider:

  • This is quite a heavy piece, especially when full. The weight can be tough on those who are not used to lifting heavy things or have arthritis or other problems with their wrists or hands.

Where Can I Buy the Mario Batali Italian Essentials 4qt Dutch Oven?

Review: Black & Decker G48TD Grill and Waffle Baker

Black & Decker Grill & Waffle BakerWhen it comes to something that allows you to do everything you need to in the kitchen, the Black & Decker G48TD Grill and Waffle Baker is the perfect appliance. If you are in the mood for waffles, set it up as a waffle maker. If you prefer to make sausage, pancakes and hash browns, switch out the pieces to make it a griddle. Or grill up your favorite piece of meat on the grilling surface. This is a very versatile piece.

When you are making waffles you fold the mechanism shut to create those golden-cratered treats. If you want a griddle or grill top, open both halves of the piece and lay them flat to have two cooking surfaces. You can have bacon going on one side and pancakes on the other.

Adjust the heat as needed to get the temperature you need for the cooking job at hand.

Unlike other waffle makers that you have to put away after breakfast, this piece is good for use all day long. You can make Paninis for lunch and grill up a chicken breast for dinner all on the same surface. This saves a lot of space in the cabinets and is perfect for smaller kitchens.

Black & Decker Grill & Waffle Baker OpenIf you are worried about having too much grease in your food, you don’t have to with this piece. It has grease-draining channels that will move the grease from the cooking surface to drains in the corner of the griddle.

What We Like:

  • The removable grill makes for quick and easy clean up after you have finished cooking.
  • You have the option of a griddle, grill or waffle iron in one kitchen appliance.

What We Don’t Like:

  • It is very hot to the touch, not just the cooking area, but also the edges and outside of the mechanism as well.
  • It doesn’t always heat evenly.

Where Can I Buy the Black & Decker G48TD Grill and Waffle Baker?

Review: Magic Bullet Express – Mix, Chop & Blend

Magic BulletAre you ready to be able to mix, chop, dice and blend up nearly anything without having to pull out the blender or food processor? That is just what the Magic Bullet Express  High-Speed Blender Mixing System was invented for.

This compact unit can hide, almost unnoticed in any corner of your kitchen, being only 4 x 4 x 10 inches, but be ready for making fast work of any food items you need chopped. The set comes with:

  • The Base Unit
  • 2 Bullet cups With Lids and Steamer Tops
  • 4 Mugs with Lids
  • 2 Blades

There is not much this unit can’t do and the pieces that it comes with make it easy to use. If you want a mixed drink, pour the ingredients into one of the mugs, blend and then put on the plastic cup top and you can drink out of the same container you mixed in.

For making dips and other hot foods, you can blend the initial ingredients in one of the bullet cups, heat it up in the microwave and take it right to the table to enjoy. It also makes quick work of those coffee beans so you can have a pot of fresh ground coffee every morning.

What We Like:

  • It is easy to use, just press and it gets to work.
  • You can mix in small containers instead of having to dirty up a bunch of big bowls for every project.
  • You can serve the items in the same container you mixed them in.
  • The screw on tops for the cups make it easy to make individual frozen drinks and hand them out as soon as they are done without a lot of blender clean up.
  • The two blades it comes with work for most kitchen jobs.
  • The mixing cups can go from the refrigerator to the microwave and dishwasher

What We Don’t Like:

  • The construction is not as sturdy as we would like and some of the plastic parts are prone to break with too much pressure.
  • Some times there is a bit of leakage from the gasket at the bottom, which can cause some sticking in the mixing mechanism.

I am Ready to Mix, Chop, Blend and Make Icy Drinks – Where Can I Buy the Magic Bullet Express?

Review: All American 30-Quart Pressure Cooker Canner – Now Nothing Goes to Waste

Whether it’s for health reasons or you just want to enjoy the fruits of your gardening labor, you may love the idea of being able to can your own fruits, vegetables and meats.

Part of that process means you will need a canner to get rid of the bacteria that could be in those food items. And the All American is one of the best ones out there.

Able to handle up to 30 quarts of liquid, 14 quart or 19 pint jars, this canner will let you get a lot done in just one shot, meaning less time spent on getting your goodies canned and on the shelf.

One of the major benefits of this canner is what is missing from it – it has no rubber gaskets around the sealing lid. If you have ever used a canner before you know that rubber gasket that creates the seal is one of the first things to break and you have to keep replacing them to be able to use your canner. Instead, the All-American 30-Quart Pressure Cooker/Canner has an innovative metal-to-metal sealing system that does the same job without the extra part to break.

What We Like:

  • This is a hardy and durable device that will be around for some time to come.
  • It can handle a lot of work, making up to 14-quart jars at a time.
  • There is no rubber seal around the top, which means one less part to break and have to be replaced.
  • It comes with a series of easy-to-follow instructions.

Some things to consider

  • The price may be considered to be a little steep for this piece, but if you are going to use it regularly you should expect to pay a higher price for a quality canner that will give you years of use.
  • It cannot be used on flattop or glass stoves

If you think the 30 quart pressure cooker canner may be a little on the large size for your family why not have a look at our review on the other sizes of  the All American Pressure Cooker/Canners that are available.

Where Can I Buy the All American 30-Quart Pressure Cooker Canner ?

Review:Mario Batali 6qt Italian Essentials Covered Pot

Mario Batali Essentials Covered Pot ChiantiIf you are looking for the pot for any and all seasons as well as any and all holiday meals, the Mario Batali 6 qt. Italian Essentials Pot is the way to go. This pot holds 6-quarts and has the strength to take on everything even if it is filled to the rim.

Measuring 13 x 13 x 7 inches this pot is made with a cast iron base and the inside and exterior are coated in a porcelain-enamel finish. The base of cast iron creates a great cooking environment, able to sustain low heat over long periods of time and heating evenly and consistently. The performance of this pot will far outdo that of aluminum and stainless steel.

One of the unique aspects of this pot is within the lid. The lid is adorned with self-basting spikes that will continue to add juices back into the meat or other items you are cooking inside.

On the stovetop this pot can cook anything from a major family pasta meal to that famous stew that you only cook for special occasions. Additionally, this pot is oven safe and can be used to cook anything from bread to roasts.

51avymfy3rl_sl160_.jpgWhat We Like:

  • The size of this pot is enough for everything you need, even if you have a large family to prepare a feast for.
  • This pot can be used on any and all stovetops, which is a nice step over some that are not as versatile.
  • It comes with a small cookbook to give you a few ideas on new things to create.

What We Don’t Like:

  • You have to wash it by hand as it is not recommended that it be put in the dishwasher.
  • The weight. With a cast iron core, this is a very heavy pot. If you have a tough time with heavy things you may want to look for another pot.

The Mario Batali Essentials Covered Pot comes in four lovely shades, the color of the pot pictured at the top of the page is called Chianti. It also comes in a number of lovely shades including Espresso and Penne. The colors that are available do vary from time to time.

Mario Batali Essentials Covered Pot EspressoMario Batali 6 qt Italian Essentials Pot - Penne

Where Can I Buy the Mario Batali 6 quart Essentials Covered Pot?