We're a big fan of kitchen gadgets, but some of them can very dangerous. Keep a look out for these gadgets to help keep members of your household out of the emergency room.
1. A Dull Knife
Dull knives can be among the most dangers of kitchen gadgets. It’s not just about having clean cuts. A dull knife requires pressing harder and this makes you more likely to slip and cut yourself instead of the food.
When someone says “my blood and sweat went into this meal”, it’s probably because they were using a dull knife.
Be sure to keep your knives honed and sharp with a honing steel or knife sharpener. It’s a good idea to at least hone your chef’s knife with a steel before slicing and chopping.
2. Mandoline Slicer
These are great for making thin slices, but watch your fingers on this one. As the uncut portion of the food gets smaller, your fingers get closer to the blade!
Be sure to use a slicer with a some kind of holder for the food that keeps your fingers out of the way. The safer slicers will come with a holder or some kind of blade guard.
3. Magnetic Knife Strip
Attached to a wall, magnetic knife strips can be a space saver for storing knives. These holders are basically a block of wood or other material with magnets, either hidden or exposed, that hold the knife blades in place.
Storing knives this way makes them visible and easily accessible.
Of course, this only work with metal knives that actually stick to magnets. It won’t work with ceramic blades.
There are some other serious safety cons:
- If the magnets are too weak, the knives fall off. As the saying goes, a falling knife has no handle. At least place the knives with the point facing up.
- The blades are open and exposed, so this is dangerous, especially in a household with children. The strip should be mounted well out of the reach of small children.
- Pulling knives off the strip also puts extra stress on the tang over time, shortening the life of the
- The knives are continually exposed to more open air for longer, increasing the chance of corrosion. Minimize this by ensuring the knives are perfectly dry before being placed on the holder after washing them.
4. Immersion Blender
Also called a stick blender, an immersion blender is a wand with a switch that turns on a spinning blade on one end.
They are super-convenient for blending or chopping a limited amount of ingredients, especially in small containers.
These are less stable than the stationary countertop blender with a cover. This doesn’t end well if the wand slips out of your hand with a spinning blade. If shopping for an immersion blender, look for one with a grip that is comfortable and won’t easily slip.
Make sure the end of the immersion blender is actually immersed in whatever you’re mixing in the container, and that container has side walls high enough to catch any splattering food. Taking the blender out of what you’re mixing before the blade stops spinning can send hot food everywhere.
And going back to the past...
5. The Vintage Presto Hot Dogger
They don't make them like they used to, and sometimes, it's for a good reason.
You can find these hot dog cookers used, but personally, we’d just stay away from this appliance that looks like a medieval torture device. You push each end of a hot dog onto a metal spike, place the lid and plug it in. Give it a minute or so and the hot dog is cooked by.... electrocution!. The vintage models came with an un-grounded plug and had no on or off switch.
What could possibly go wrong?
Let us know of your experiences with these items in the comments below!