TODAY

TODAY   |  December 13, 2013

7 gadgets for faster, easier holiday cooking

Chris Kimball, host of “America’s Test Kitchen,” shows off a cookie press to help expedite baking, a pie weight to hold pie crusts in place, and a carafe that will chill wine to 50 degrees in 15 minutes.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> when you are busy getting food ready the one thing you always seem to run out of is time.

>> here with kitchen gadgets is the host of america's test kitchen and editor of cook's illustrat illustrated.

>> what do we have?

>> cookie press for sprits cookies. it is easy to clean which is nice. there we go.

>> works great.

>> christmas trees .

>> a lot of these don't work very well. this is easy to fill and clean and it works.

>> is the price right?

>> $29.99.

>> okay.

>> pie weights are used when you prebake a crust. you have to put this in the oven for 20 minutes and the pie weights. it is messy and hard to do.

>> what? i don't know what you are talking about.

>> you prebake it so it sets. i have never heard of that.

>> this are ceramic balls which you put in over tin foil . this is a ventilated pie weight which means forget that.

>> you just put this in like this. it stops the pie dough.

>> you leave it in there.

>> then you take it out.

>> so here is the problem. you have a bottle of white wine . it is warm. you want a glass or two. so you want to chill it fast. this does it in 15 minutes . you put the wine in the bottle. this has an insert which you can fill with ice. and then put that in. put the top back on like that.

>> and this is what i want for christmas.

>> i'm observing. and you put it up as it were. then you have a glass of wine. it takes about 15 minutes to chill this to 50 degrees which is about where you might want it.

>> what if you put the bottle in the freezer for 15 minutes ?

>> the freezer takes quite a long time and then you risk the possibility of leaving it in too long.

>> i'm going to let that one slide.

>> so this is when you want to take the temperature of something at a distance. this hooks up to your iphone or ipad. you can set a timer on it and set an alarm to go off when it hits a predetermined temperature. if you were doing a steak, for example you might set it at 120. this is a pork tenderloin you might set at 140 or so. when it reaches the temperature the alarm goes off. and you have it with your iphone so you can be hundreds of feet away in your house depending how big your house is and the iphone says go back to the oven. these wires come out of the oven.

>> this -- you put this in the oven with the meat and the probe. seems dangerous to me.

>> you have this wire that comes out. the door closes on the wire.

>> that is what i asked. or you can put it on the grill and do the same thing.

>> seems like sparks might fly.

>>> this is the american innovative. it has four things you can time at once. you can set them like this. one, two, three, four. then you use the outer ring to set the minutes you want. and it has come it is finished, these are the four timers that will beep different colors.

>> that's a good one.

>> i just don't understand it.

>> four things at once is easy to see.

>> how about just watch it.

>> when you wake up in the morning and find this in the kitchen.

>> that means your kids are home from college.

>> all eight of them. this squeegee gets it off.

>> i like that. and when you put this in the dish washer it does a better job of cleaning than if you have little bits of food. the bread or bun warmer can be heated in the toaster or oven for about ten minutes.

>> it is an old concept. and this you would put in the bottom of the bread basket.

>> that's a nice hostess gift.

>> this would be very hot for 15 minutes and warm for about 45.

>> thank you.

>> low tech.

>> like you.