› Nicko › Reviews by Nicko

Reviews by: Nicko

Great value Great performance


Pros: Inexpensive, easy to clean

Cons: None really

A hand blender is an indispensable tool in any kitchen. They are in every pro kitchen but often not in as many home kitchens but what a time saver. I was looking for an inexpensive and easy to clean blender and this was a great choice. One button on, easy and comfortable to grip, blender portion detaches and is dishwasher safe so it is easy to clean. My only regret might be I should of purchased one for with more power (higher watts) but then the price would of gone past what I wanted to pay. For the money I feel this is a great buy. Very well made and I have not had any issues.

Extremely reliable thermometer


Pros: Well made, sturdy, accurate

Cons: Little bulky not as convenient as a pocket thermometer

I own this same thermometer only in orange and have owned it for years. It is probably the best thermometer I have owned and the accuracy it excellent. Mine is mostly used for roasting meats and for making yogurt but I have also used it to test the water temp on my espresso machine. What I like about this thermometer is you can clean it after use and run it under water and not worry about ruining the electronics. You can also get a silicone jacket for it which I did and it offers even more protection. There is definitely a cost issue with the thermometer but you will have it for the rest of your life it is that durable. I have never regretting this purchase and I would recommend this to...
(read more)

One Day Bread class is a blast


Pros: Learn a large variety of breads, In Paris, prices are reasonable

Cons: Can't really think of any

Back in 2009 my wife and I took a trip to Paris and I thought it would be a lot of fun to go to the Le Cordon Bleu in Paris and take a one day bread making class. Le Cordon Blue Paris actually offers a number of 1-3 day classes for those looking for a fun culinary adventure while in the great city of Paris. The classes are taught in French but an English translator is present and literally translates the entire class. I was curious about this and the interpreter explained to me that even their regular programs are all translated into English due to the many students from all over the world who attend the school.    The cost at the time was 180 euros which is about $250.00 US...
(read more)

An excellent tour of the cuisine and people of Greece


Pros: historical reference, understanding of local products and producers, unique recipes

Cons: no resource guide and certain ingredients are difficult to find.

While Greece may be struggling financially, one part of the country that will remain forever strong is its fascinating cuisine. Although many people don’t realize this, Greek cooking is incredibly diverse and so much more than the ubiquitous dishes such as gyros, moussaka, and roast lamb.  If you have never had the pleasure of travelling through Greece and enjoying the people and the food then let “The Country Cooking of Greece” be your guide.   Chronicle books have put together “The Country Cooking of….” series which currently includes Ireland, Italy, France, and Greece. While the Irish and Italian books were authored by Coleman Andrews (co-founder of Saveur magazine)...
(read more)

A Beautiful CookBook


Pros: Amazing photography, authentic recipes, history and holidays of Greece

Cons: Not many. Would love to see photos of techniques not just finished products.

  “Food From Many Greek Kitchens” by Tessa Kiros has to be one of the most beautiful cookbooks I have had the pleasure of reading and using. Not only are the recipes authentic the photos that accompany them are absolutely amazing and help set the context for the food. As you cook your way through the recipes it is easy to feel like you are making your way through many different homes in Greece.   The book begins with a brief introduction to the Greek alphabet which was difficult to understand the relevance. While it was thoughtful to include it did not lend anything useful to the book. It also includes in the beginning chapters a rudimentary glossary which while more...
(read more)

New Steel Makes Light Work


Pros: sharp durable blade, light, beautiful handle

Cons: price

  The latest line from our friends at New West Knife works is the upgraded fusion wood “2.0” line. The “fusion wood” line has always distinguished itself from other knifes by the beautifully crafted handles (multiple colors of layered veneer) and well crafted blades. New West’s fusion wood knives have always stood out not just as great pieces of cutlery but as works of art that look as great as they perform.    ChefTalk received three knives (The 9 , The 8 both 2.0 versions as well) and of the three this knife was a Santoku style. Santoku originates from Japan and is generally considered an all purpose kitchen knife. A Santoku makes sense for just about any...
(read more)

Fantastic everyday utility knife


Pros: Good steel, compact and easy to use

Cons: Non

    Often as a cook you get comfortable with a certain set of knives and don’t always venture outside of that depending on what type of cooking or work you do with food.  My gear was pretty standard, a 10 inch chef knife, paring knife, boning knife and a slicer made my kit.  It wasn’t until I had to cut large amounts of fruits for banquet displays that I added a serrated bread knife to my kit.   Peeling the skin of fruit is easiest with a high quality serrated blade. Of course slicing through bread or pastries is what a serrated knife was intended for and makes those everyday tasks much easier. My choice was always for a standard bread knife length 8-9...
(read more) › Nicko › Reviews by Nicko