A potato masher with style
This funky potato masher doesn’t look like anything we’d ever used before, but we couldn’t deny it had a certain goofy charm. So we were surprised (and delighted) to discover how well it did its job. Instead of pounding the potatoes (as you would with a regular masher), with this tool, you twist and stir. The gadget’s curved bottom easily slips into every nook and cranny of the pot, leaving no potato unmashed. Made by Chef’s Planet, it sells for $9.95 at Kitchenetc.com.
—Kimberly Y. Masibay
A cleverly designed roasting rack
For roasting turkey, we recently tried and liked the Cuisipro Roast and Serve roasting rack. Handles make the rack easy to lift from roasting pan to carving board; once the bird is on the board, pull the removable pin in the center of the rack and the sides are easy to pull away, saving you from having to haul the turkey out of the rack. The rack sells for $28.95 at Surlatable.com.
A flat whisk makes great gravy
When it’s time to make the gravy, a flat whisk is the ultimate tool, both for working flour into the pan drippings to make a roux and for working the broth into the roux. Its horizontal shape skims along the bottom and into corners of roasting, sauce, and sauté pans more efficiently than other whisk designs. Cuisipro makes flat whisks with very flexible, silicone-coated wires for gentle use with nonstick surfaces. They’re available in several sizes and colors from $9.99 at Amazon.com.
A carving set that’s handsome and sharp
A really useful carving set has to work well in the kitchen and look good on the table. This forged stainless-steel set with rosewood handles from Lamson & Goodnow does just that. It includes a 10-inch knife that’s perfect for carving a turkey or slicing a beef tenderloin, and an 8-inch fork. The set sells for $109.95 at Cutleryandmore.com.
A better tool for defatting broth
The fat separator—a cup with a spout at the bottom that lets you pour off fat-free liquid once the fat has risen to the top—is a pretty good idea, except for one drawback: Some fat always gets in the spout, too. Oxo has come up with a neat little solution to that problem: A rubber stopper in the spout that keeps the fat in the cup and out of the spout. The fat separator comes in 2- and 4-cup sizes and has a handy built-in strainer, too. For more information, visit OXO.com, where the two sizes sell for $9.99 and $14.99.