Hot!That's not the way you are supposed to use that!

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bartl
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2014/05/21 16:22:45 (permalink)

That's not the way you are supposed to use that!

OK, the topic is: Kitchen tools, gadgets and appliances that you use in a way other than what the gadget was designed to do. It can be as simple as the old "butter knife as a screwdriver" trick. Or, it can be more off the wall, like what I used to do with my electric knife: use it to carve foam rubber, to be formed into useful items (like custom shaped cushions). One of my Italian friends used to borrow my large wok for making spaghetti carbonara.
 
So, what kitchen tools, gadgets and appliance do you find to be very useful in an originally unintended way?
 
Bart
#1

33 Replies Related Threads

    felix4067
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/21 16:38:03 (permalink)
    Coming from a theatre background, it was weird for me the day I learned electric knives weren't made to carve foam rubber!  Aluminum pie plates used as "donuts" (sharpens the focus on patterns in stage lights), also aluminum foil used as a cheap barn door (blocks ambient light coming from a fixture from shining on things you want to stay dark).
     
    If you're very, very careful, you can open a bottle of wine without a corkscrew by placing the neck (where the cork is) against the edge of your sink and hitting it with a meat mallet. The glass will break fairly cleanly, and you can pull the cork out with your hands.
     
    Plastic forks make excellent holders for labelling trays when you start your seeds (thread a piece of cardboard or paper through the tines like the card on a floral arrangement).
     
    My can strainer was useless as intended, but it's wonderful for the kids when they're panning for gold in the creek. (There is no gold, but we don't tell them that).
    #2
    mar52
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/21 18:26:31 (permalink)
    I use the bottoms of my stoneware plates to sharpen knives when I'm too lazy to hunt for the sharpener.  Works great!
     
    I do batters in my Vitamix.
    #3
    Foodbme
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/21 19:13:39 (permalink)
    My Bride has been known to use Pots & Pans as weapons against me when she's mad at me!
    #4
    tmiles
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/21 19:42:06 (permalink)
    Foodbme

    My Bride has been known to use Pots & Pans as weapons against me when she's mad at me!


    So if you go missing, we know what happened!
    #5
    mlm
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/21 20:21:31 (permalink)
    Metal spatula comes in awfully handy when my freezer ices over, AGAIN. If wiggling it doesn't do it, apply firm object to handle. Not a kitchen gadget, but I discovered last summer that if I slam a coke bottle cap against the edge of the coffee table, I can loosen it (the cap) enough. No, thank God, it didn't geyser out but I was able to remove it. It was really hot, I was alone,  I was in a hormonal hurricane, and I was going to drink that Mountain Dew come hell or high water.
    #6
    EdSails
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/21 20:57:08 (permalink)
    I used to use a vegetable peeler on occasion as an emergency pencil sharpener." />
    #7
    Uncle Groucho
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/21 21:26:00 (permalink)
    I use a stiff plastic spatula to pry open my car door in the winter.
    #8
    FriedClamFanatic
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/22 10:24:36 (permalink)
    Foodbme

    My Bride has been known to use Pots & Pans as weapons against me when she's mad at me!

     
    Sticks and stones may break your bones.
    But Cast Iron Pans will KILL YA!

    #9
    BelleReve
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/22 12:54:31 (permalink)
    The ceiling fan in my kitchen uses chandelier bulbs, and every now and then the bulb will break off leaving the metal base in the socket.  The end of a wooden cooking spoon is just the right size to stick inside the metal cap and unscrew it with.
    #10
    mar52
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/22 13:04:37 (permalink)
    I use my exercise bike as a coat rack.
    #11
    lleechef
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/22 15:07:27 (permalink)
    You can use tongs to take caps off of beer bottles.
    #12
    WarToad
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/22 15:18:48 (permalink)
    I have a maple french rolling pin I use as a meat mallet when I make pork tenderloin sandwiches.   Cover the meat with plastic wrap and whackwhackwhackwhack. 
     
    The nutcracker has opened an aweful lot of beer bottles.
     
    17" Lodge cast iron skillet is my pizza pan and all round general baking "stone"
    #13
    rumaki
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/22 15:36:29 (permalink)
    This discussion reminds me of when I was on stage crew in high school.  I remember the teacher who taught Stagecraft and supervised all the crews saying to us, "Always use a tool for the purpose intended," all the while using a Yankee screwdriver to hammer (not screw) a nail into a board while we were building sets.
    #14
    felix4067
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/22 16:45:09 (permalink)
    rumaki

    This discussion reminds me of when I was on stage crew in high school.  I remember the teacher who taught Stagecraft and supervised all the crews saying to us, "Always use a tool for the purpose intended," all the while using a Yankee screwdriver to hammer (not screw) a nail into a board while we were building sets.

    Mine told us to always buy Craftsman hand tools, because you can return them for a replacement in case you do something stupid and break one. I'm on my second 8-inch adjustable wrench, as the first one was the victim of an unfortunate hammering accident.
    #15
    chewingthefat
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/22 17:20:32 (permalink)
    I use a cupcake pan to make bacon cooked egg munchies, damn good and easy.
    #16
    mar52
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/22 20:39:28 (permalink)
    Oh, Lisa reminded me....  You can also used tongs to squeeze lemons.
    #17
    Turtle66
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/23 02:16:00 (permalink)
    Meat tenderizer as a hammer                                                                                                                                                Aluminum Foil as an antenna                                                       Wooden serving spoons as drum sticks                                           Tongs to retrieve spark plugs thats out of reach in the engine compartment.                                                                             Wedge cut wine cork for a door stop.                                                                                                                                        Potato                                                                                          used to unscrew a broken light bulb      
    #18
    kaszeta
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/23 07:45:01 (permalink)
    My turkey fryer has never fried a turkey. I do use the wok on it a lot. And brew a lot of beer with it.

    My hot air popper has never had popcorn in it, just coffee beans.

    Similarly, my coffee grinder hasn't had coffee in it, just spices.
    #19
    WarToad
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/23 08:01:19 (permalink)
    kaszeta ...My hot air popper has never had popcorn in it, just coffee beans.

    Similarly, my coffee grinder hasn't had coffee in it, just spices.

    So... you roast your own beans, but don't grind your own beans.  Or do you grind your beans in a blender, which has never had a daiquiri in it? 

    #20
    bartl
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/23 08:47:34 (permalink)
    Woks are definite multi-taskers; I use my small wok as a steamer, stir fry pan and a deep fryer.
     
    I picked up an aluminum milkshake cup, although I don't have a milkshake maker; it is a perfect size for use with my stick blender.
     
    Bart
    #21
    harriet1954
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/23 10:25:39 (permalink)
    Bart, thanks so much for that milkshake cup idea; I stupidly left my (parents') mint-green Hamilton Beach #30 milkshake machine behind when moving many years ago, and was in no position to go back and get it. That thing was in absolutely perfect condition. Ever since, I really couldn't find anything deep and narrow enough for my stick blender. Thankfully, these cups aren't real expensive.
     
    When my daughter moved into her own place (finally), she didn't have a saucepot at all, and used her little wok for just about everything stovetop.
     
    I'm picking up some great ideas from this thread. I'm probably using something that's supposed to be utilized for something else in my kitchen, but it's more than likely instinct and wouldn't appear to me as out of the ordinary. If I come up with something...
    #22
    WarToad
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/23 11:58:49 (permalink)
    My wok dates back to 1984 whan it was my one and only "pan".  Through college I used it for literally everything.  I don't use it daily anymore, but  at least weekly, and for far more than stir fries.  It is seasoned to hades and back again.
    #23
    felix4067
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/23 12:40:08 (permalink)
    I knew there had to be more I wasn't thinking of earlier... I keep a crock pot purely for dyeing clothes (learned that when I worked at the costume shop). I also have a separate coffee grinder that only does spices. Aluminum pie tins are the best water trays for indoor plants when the pie is gone, and also make excellent broiling pans. My 12-inch diameter, 4-inch deep cast iron pan (with lid) works so well as a deep fryer I got rid of the deep fryer. When I was in college, my cats had a dish pan instead of a litter box (saved me about $8). Dixie cups are the perfect place to start seeds.
    #24
    BelleReve
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/23 13:39:56 (permalink)
    The weirdest thing I've seen - the nail salon where I go, they use a cheese grater like a pumice stone on the bottoms and heels of the customers' feet when giving pedicures.  I get a pedicure there once in a while but won't let them use it on my poor feet with their calluses and corns.
    #25
    mar52
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/23 15:19:05 (permalink)
    I slice strawberries and mushrooms with my egg slicer.
    #26
    Foodbme
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/23 17:59:46 (permalink)
    mar52
    I slice strawberries and mushrooms with my egg slicer.

    Works for Radishes too!
    #27
    Michael Hoffman
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/23 19:08:52 (permalink)
    mar52

    I slice strawberries and mushrooms with my egg slicer.

    That's an interesting combination.
    #28
    mar52
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/23 20:17:00 (permalink)
    A dripping of Balsamic pulls it all together.
    #29
    Michael Hoffman
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    Re:That's not the way you are supposed to use that! 2014/05/23 20:33:50 (permalink)
    You know, if not for the fact that I'm allergic to mushrooms ... . I'll bet you use a really good Balsamic, too.
    #30
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