Sunday, February 8, 2009

Kitchen machines

I was lazy today and made pudding from an instant mix instead of cooking it from scratch. Scratch is a little cheaper (although generic mix is pretty cheap!), but it's a lot better, and I suspect it's better for you. Well, not as bad, anyway.

I poured in the milk and added the mix, then reached for my handy dandy, sooper dooper, hand cranked old fashioned egg beater. They're not easy to find any more, but they're one of the best tools ever created for a kitchen. A good egg beater barely whines when you turn the handle. It's a finely tuned machine, perfectly balanced and intricately designed. Since it's manual, I can use it anywhere instead of reaching for an electric receptacle. It doesn't cost one penny to operate and what little exercise I got from it was good for me.

Multiply that times however many electric machines and makers you use and subtract the total. If you did the math right, you got less than nothing in exchange for using electricity and not using your own muscles.

Many kitchens have 5 or more electrical outlets for all the coffee makers, rice machines, electric knives, blenders, food processors, mixers, can openers, bread machines, electric teapots, toasters, toaster ovens, slow cookers, popcorn poppers, electric skillets, juicers... not to mention electric griddles and grills, electric woks, electric fondue pots, electric steamers and egg cookers and timers, hotplates, deep fryers, warming trays...

And then we wonder why our electric bills are so high.

(I realize there are those who are disabled who cannot do things otherwise and for those, I am glad electrical machines are available.)


  1. You are really helping me today. When I cleaned my mom's house after she died, I brought home some of her kitchen tools, including a non-electric egg beater. I put it in a basket for kitchen decoration. Now it's coming out of decoration and put int he drawer for practical use. I also make instant puddings. Not becuase it's cheaper, just because I'm too lazy to cook it. LOL
    Regards, again.

  2. Yes the old egg beaters are great, I also love my hand held can opener! I have an electric one, but if Dh isn't watching I use the hand held one, It works so well, on any can.
    But I love my Crock Pot, and Dh especially loves the Rice pudding I make in it. I know I don't need a crock pot to make rice pudding, but it saves heating the whole oven. And it is such a lovely treat. Most times I make it with raisins, but sometimes I use cranberries, just for a change.

  3. Kootenay Annie - please post your recipe for crock pot rice pudding - much cheaper than baking in my electric oven - and comfort food at its best!

  4. Crock Pot classic Rice pudding

    4 cups cooked white rice
    3/4 cup raisins
    1 1/4 tsp vanilla
    1 1/4can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
    1 1/4 can ( 12 Ounces) evaporated milk

    1 1/2 tbsp sugar
    1 tsp ground cinamon ( or to taste)


    Spray inside of slow cooker with cooking spray. Mix all ingredients except sugar and cinnamon in cooker. Cover and cook on Low heat setting 3 to 4 hours or until liquid is absorbed. Stir pudding. Sprinkle pudding with sugar and cinnamon. Serve warm.

    My personal notes.
    Omit last amount of sugar ( for us diabetics)

    Make own Easy Evaporated milk

    11/3 cup water
    1 cup of instant dry milk powder. Stir or shake to combine ( I shake it in a small jar with lid on tight)
    This is the equivalent of a 12 ounce tin ( see above that's all that's needed!).
    If you want to make Evaporated whole milk, you will need to add some fat to replace the milk fat in whole milk. Do this by preparing evaporated skim milk then adding 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil to the milk. Stir it up vigorously to emulsify The fat with the milk.

    It will separate on standing, so mix it really well right before using it.
    This is best used in cooking and baking. A spritz of nonstick spray will help the emulsification process.

    Sweetened Condensed milk: ( from the Tightwad Gazette. the best one for taste and texture I've found)

    1 cup instant nonfat dry milk solids
    2/3 cups sugar
    1/3 cup boiling water
    3 Tbsp melted margarine
    combine all ingredients in the container of an electric blender . Process untill smooth. Store in the refrigerator until ready to use Yield about 1 1/4 cups.

    I just use this amount in the above recipe. Also I put water in a glass measuring cup, add margarine, and heat to boiling in the microwave. I have the other 2 items in the blender and then just add the water with marjarine, and blend. Very easy.

    Usining these 2 recipies cuts the cost WAY down in making the rice pudding.

    When I cook rice for supper I try and make extra, so I can make this up anytime.

    Hope this helps.

    Kootenay Annie

  5. Sounds good, Kootenay Annie.. Love the name. haha Sounds like it should be on a Wanted Poster.