less space, more stuff!

22 Nov

I like to think that I have a very well-equipped kitchen. From utensils and gadgets to pans and hardware, I have a lot of really solid tools for my trade. Some might say I have too many kitchen toys… The things is, as you all know, finding places to put all this stuff. Storage! That is the one thing you can never have too much of.*

Thankfully, technology is my friend and helps me find more ways to save time and space in the kitchen!

Okay, but seriously. I used to own this:

a 4-quart crock pot, without that nasty stock photo meat in it

and this:

an 8-cup rice cooker

and this:

a 6-quart stove top pressure cooker

Whew! Large and in charge, all three of these items took up a ton of space. A few months ago, Jim and I were looking at getting a newer, nicer rice cooker and stumbled across this beast:

Fagor 3-in-1 6 quart multi-cooker

I immediate busted out my phone and did what I always do when I’m considering an unknown purchase- look at reviews on Amazon. It was looking pretty promising and the price was totally right, so we decided to take the plunge and get it. It has since taken the place of all three of the above, which I was liberating by releasing into the wild (of other people’s kitchens).

After several months of using it, here is my assessment:

-Replaces 3 large kitchen appliances.
-Pressure cooking done on the counter top now, rather than taking up the stove!
-Rice/quinoa is cooked under pressure and cooks in just 6 minutes once the unit reaches pressure (so total time is about 10 minutes). I only need to run it for 2 cycles for wild rice! Nice.
-Rice texture is fluffy and great plus no more browning on the bottom of the pot when left on “warm”.
-Much quieter when pressure cooking than the stove top model.
-Beans are tender.
-Slow cooks perfectly.


-Because there is only one way to release the pressure (valve), can’t employ the “quick release” method we were used to on the stove top. It’s not really a con, but has taken some getting used to in our bean preparation times based on our old habits. We haven’t ruined a batch yet, though, and we’re getting a better feel for it each time.
-The only option for slow cooking is the low setting, no high setting. This works fine for us because I never use the high setting, but could be a drawback for someone else.

So, you can see the pros outweigh the cons significantly. I’ve been incredibly happy with this purchase and keep recommending it to people, so I figured I should blog about it! The cost of a really good rice cooker alone is usually close to double the cost of the this unit. And, for the record, I am writing this review on my own accord. Cool companies never offer me swag. Alas, I buy my own gadgets. πŸ™‚

What kitchen appliance or tool do you most love?

*This is a totally unrelated side note but whatever, I love tangents. I know there are a lot of grammarians and English majors who read this blog. As I was proofreading this entry, I noticed the above sentence, which I ended with a preposition. “Eeek!” I could collectively hear you saying. “You should never end a sentence with a preposition!” Little known fact, I used to be a Linguistics major in college, so here’s a story about the history of English and that silly rule.

Centuries ago, when more and more books and pamphlets were being put to print, grammarians were concerned about the degradation of the English language (when aren’t they concerned?). They decided it was time to put more rules and parameters around English. Latin was revered as the true, “educated” language to which we should aspire to emulate. It was natural to them that they decided in order to speak proper English, they would apply rules of Latin to it. In Latin, there is a rule which says you cannot end a sentence with a preposition because you literally cannot. Your sentence would not make sense because within the structure of Latin because it would not be reflecting back onto a noun, it would just hang there and be nonsense.

Now, being that we aren’t speaking Latin and that you can understand most English sentences with the preposition falling at the end of the sentence, it’s not actually necessary. Sure, sometimes a restructure of a sentence makes it sound better, but sometimes it sounds worse. As I always say, do what feels right to your ear. And if you’re interested in reading more about this misguided rule, click here or here.


13 Responses to “less space, more stuff!”

  1. Jojo November 22, 2010 at 5:56 am #

    I really want one of those now?

  2. Fanny November 22, 2010 at 6:05 am #

    That seems like a really cool thing to have! I have neither of those three things now, but all of a sudden I want to have them all in one.

  3. Hope November 22, 2010 at 6:22 am #

    I have the same problem. No Space!! I figured maybe I just need a trip to Ikea for some kitchen organization solution…?

  4. radioactivegan November 22, 2010 at 8:28 am #

    To paraphrase Churchill: A preposition at the end of a sentence? That is ridiculousness up with which I will not put! πŸ˜‰

    That looks pretty cool. I have a slow cooker and a pressure cooker too … and I’ve been thinking about getting a rice cooker. I might have to look for one of these instead!

  5. Lizzie November 22, 2010 at 9:26 am #

    I love my food processor a lot. It is a fairly cheap Hamilton Beach model, that I got for a Christmas gift about six years ago – it is still going strong. Unfortunately, the husband dropped the bowl a few weeks ago, and it now has a nice crack on it. It hasn’t been a problem so far, but it makes me very sad to think of the prospect of having to search for a new one…if only a Vitamix was in the budget. Ha ha, just saying that makes me laugh, it’s so unrealistic! ;p

  6. Beth November 22, 2010 at 10:20 am #

    OH god, I want that! Must… resist… spending…

    My favorite appliance was my immersion blender. Til it broke. 😦

  7. Amanda Nobile November 22, 2010 at 11:01 am #

    No more browning on the bottom of rice? I am sold! It will be so great to only need space for one item instead of two (I have a slow cooker too). Thank you for sharing this!!!!!!

    As for my favorite kitchen item…….I would have to go with my immersion blender too. πŸ™‚

  8. Courtney November 22, 2010 at 5:39 pm #

    Hahaha…when I read this “I immediate busted out my phone and did what I always do when I’m considering an unknown purchase- look at reviews on Amazon.” I thought–her phone?! Doesn’t she mean her computer? But then…I realized what a lame technology loser I am and figured you could go on-line on your phone. Yeah. I have had the same horrible old cell phone for the past SIX and a half years! It still works, so why change!? But I can’t go on line on it, that is for sure!

    My favorite kitchen appliance/tool? It is a toss up between my salad spinner and my vita-mix. They are both great!


  9. aimeekluiber November 22, 2010 at 6:14 pm #

    i use the Latin argument all the time when someone tries to correct my grammar (as if!!).
    Fave tool? Ms. Vita-Mix, natch! Your new toy looks quite wonderful!

  10. Lee Ann November 22, 2010 at 6:35 pm #

    I’ve been wanting all 3 of them but don’t have any yet since I don’t want the clutter.
    Might have to put it on my list to Santa.

  11. Lee Ann November 22, 2010 at 6:40 pm #

    Forgot to say – I love my immersion blender that and my microplane grater are the 2 things I have to have in my kitchen.

  12. Andrea November 22, 2010 at 6:48 pm #

    I was looking at the 3-in-1 cooker, too, but didn’t buy it, yet. Thanks for reviewing it! It makes a lot of sense to combine appliances. If it breaks, though, you loose three tools at once!

  13. Josiane November 22, 2010 at 9:21 pm #

    That sounds great! I’ve been thinking about getting a pressure cooker after reading quite a few posts raving about how fast it cooks beans but this, being more versatile, sounds even better. Tempting…

    As for what kitchen tool I love most, I could say my immersion blender or some other appliance, but honestly, the first thing that popped to mind was my wooden spoons. I love mixing stuff by hand using a wooden spoon, I love how I can do so many things with it, even though it’s so humble. I also love how warm and beautiful wooden spoons are. Really, I seem to be in the mood to write an ode to wooden spoons! πŸ˜‰

    And thanks for the info about using (or not) prepositions at the end of a sentence; that’s very interesting. You know how French has so many rules, and even more exceptions? Part of the reason why would be that when school became obligatory in France and grammar books were published for that new market, the publishers thought that they would sell more books if theirs was the most “complete” one, i.e. the one detailing more rules and exceptions than the competitors’ – so they started piling them up. That was so very nice of them… :/

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