The modern kitchen is overflowing with gadgets, accessories and technology to help make all tasks that little bit easier. Over time, some new inventions have come along that have revolutionised how we cook and prepare food, while others have enjoyed brief popularity before falling by the wayside. So if you could have just one thing, what would it be?
Most kitchen-related inventions are born out of a desire to make a messy job cleaner or to speed up slow processes. Anybody who has spent a lot of time slaving over a hot stove will be all too aware of how food processors, microwaves and other devices have helped to revolutionise meal preparation. However, there is always room for improvement. Whether it’s something entirely new or an upgrade to an existing product, things rarely stand still for long.
But if the Dragon’s Den has taught us anything, it is that while there is plenty of ingenuity in the field of kitchen appliance design, innovation doesn’t always necessarily equate to quality. For every great invention, there are usually a dozen truly awful alternatives. Perhaps not exactly in the chocolate teapot category, but not far off – does anybody remember the cucumber cover?
Integration over Invention
Integration of new technology in existing appliances is often popular. Televisions have been built-in to the doors of fridges, while some microwaves could soon come equipped with scanners that will use barcodes to set the time for perfect results. One is useful, the other, well, slightly less so.
So perhaps you’re bored of having to roll your own pastry, or you can never quite get the thickness right. The rolling pin has been used, without much change in its design, for centuries – perhaps it’s in need of an upgrade.
Maybe you’re inspired by the Carad Minitro, which somehow manages to combine an oven, hob and dishwasher all in one handy appliance. This helps to save space in a tight kitchen, plus it means you can do pretty much everything in a single machine – what could be better?
If you’re not convinced about the value of a dishwasher, you could instead look at an integrated fridge for your oven. Fortunately the good people at Whirlpool are only too happy to oblige, having dreamt up the imaginatively hot and cold Gold Polara range. As baffling as it is brilliant; while it’s hard to see the two opposites working in harmony, the fire and ice combination is an impressive feat of both design and engineering.
So what else rubs you up the wrong way?
Have you ever tried to peel and core a mango? If you don’t know the tricks of the trade, it can be a long and messy process. If there was a machine that could do it all for you, cleanly and quickly, leaving only the juicy flesh; well, that would be fantastic, a little niche, but useful as and when required. How about an automatic tea maker, which removes the tea bag at the right time and pours the optimal amount of milk for the perfect cuppa? Sure, it might sound like laziness, but why should you do all the hard work when a machine can do it for you?
Maybe there’s something around the oven that could do with improvement. We’ve already seen that you can include a dishwasher or even a fridge, so what other additional extras could be squeezed in to make your life that little bit easier? Should worktops include in-built touchscreens that provide helpful instructions for difficult meals or baking tips, including timings, sizes and quantities?
We want you to share your ideas on our Facebook page. So from something nice and simple to an appliance full of elaboration, what would you like to see invented to make your kitchen a better place to be? If you’ve got a million pound idea, you might want to keep that to yourself, but for everything else – we want to hear from you.
Test Tubes image from Flickr
Chocolate Teapot image from Flickr