The purpose of a kitchen gadget may not always be obvious to everyone. A recent consultation with a young man reminded me that if you don’t know what something is, you might assume it is designed for a different job altogether.
This charming young bachelor is working on improving his eating habits, and the basics of healthy cooking was a key topic of our discussion. “Do you eat vegetables?”‘ I asked.
“Not that often,” he replied, “I don’t know how to cook them.”
I mentioned that roasting is a good, simple method, and I went through the basics with him. He wanted to know how to steam vegetables, and I told him, “Oh, that’s super easy. Do you have a vegetable steamer basket?”
The response: “No, I don’t think so.”
I described the inexpensive gadget and recommended that he pick one up at Target or Kohl’s. “It’ll cost you about $5,” I said. I used my interlocking fingers to demonstrate how it opens up to accommodate any size saucepan. “It opens like a flower from a bud,” I went on, “with little metal ‘feet’ that hold the vegetables above the water as they cook.”
His face lit up. The lightbulb just went on. “Ohhhh, . . . so that’s what that is! We have one of those in the drawer. My roommate and I thought that was for straining pasta!”