Tag Archives: cooking az

King Kooker 12-Slot Leg and Wing Grill Rack – Item of the Day

wingrackEvery day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is the King Kooker 12-Slot Leg and Wing Grill Rack.  Oh you out door cooking types are going to love this, though it works quite well in the oven too!  Since I first reviewed this item the price has gone up to 16 bucks but the good news is it is no longer an “add on item” so you can buy one alone if you want to.

There is so much I love about these things, first they hold either 12 wings or 12 legs and they do it in about 1/4th of the space that you’d normally need.  Next is that they end up with perfectly crisped and seasoned skin.  Since they never touch the grill rack and you never have to turn them.

I generally cook my chicken on a low temperature on indirect or very low direct heat until almost done.  Then bring up the temp at the end to crisp up the skin.  It also makes sense to set these in a small pan or toss away aluminum pan to minimize flare ups when cooking over direct coals or flame.

Again they work great in the oven as well, cook until almost done at say 350 then pop up to 425 for a bit to crisp up the skin, want a recipe, tune into today’s show for one!  You cans see in the above photo how the wings are hung from the rack by the tips and in the photo below how the legs hang and are held by the knuckle.

Let me tell you try the King Kooker 12-Slot Leg and Wing Grill Rack and you will never loose that crispy skin off a drum stick ever again.

legrack

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

P.S. – My latest cook with these was indoors and let me give you the skinny.  I coated the wings in my famous “chili garlic pepper oil” and then dusted them with a mix of chili powder, smoked salt, garlic, cumin, paprika, onion and black pepper, all about equal amounts ground in a Mr. Coffee Grinder. (FYI this is my everything seasoning mix)

I used the “convection roast” setting in my oven, ran them at 425 for 45 minutes, they were beyond fantastic.

To do this without creating a grease fire or lots of smoke take a large aluminum foil ban like for baking a turkey, put this rack inside it and put about 3 inches of water in it.  This will catch dripping fat and the water won’t let it scorch on the pan when it gets caught.  The extra humidity will be good for keeping them juicy.

On this latest run I got 15 wings on the rack with a bit of fiddling, which is 30 pieces.  The only down side is you can only fit one of these in a standard oven.

The Bradley Smokers Original Smoker – TSP Item of the Day

bradleysmokerEvery day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day the Bradley Smokers Original Smoker.  I first learned about this smoker from Kevin Kegan one of my partners at PermaEthos.  He recommended the digital version, but after a lot of research I decided the original version was good enough for my needs.  So I could not justify the extra expense and I always cook with a two probe thermometer anyway.

The four rack system give a lot more cooking area then you would think.  I recently removed one of the racks and with a bit of creativity in how I slid in the other three was able to do six pork shoulders in a single smoke.

If there is a downside to Bradley it is you have to use their “bisquettes” which are compressed little pucks of wood shavings.  To me though it isn’t a big issue, if you smoke with a tool like this you are not making a single meal, rather you are making a significant amount of food. When you pro rate the cost across the per pound of yield it is insignificant.

The fact that you can keep many different woods on hand in a small space is nice too.  Alder for salmon, hickory for that home cured bacon and cheese (using the cold smoke adapter of course), oak for pork, pecan for brisket.  (crap giving away more of my secrets here)

Frankly I never let any extra space go to waste.  Lets say I am doing a single pork shoulder for a small family get together.  Okay great, so I will toss in a few rib racks and say a chuck roast, smoke it all.  I then let the extra stuff cool, vacuum seal and freeze it.  All you do is take it out and re heat it and rock on.  This means you can have low and slow smoked wonderful meats ready to go.

When you do a brisket you have to cut it in half, it just won’t fit whole, but two fit cut in half.  Half a brisket is still a lot of meat, so one smoke, 4 half briskets, for a family thing two halves go in the freezer, but if it is just for Dorothy and I, one half gets used and three go in the freezer.

How does that effect quality?  It doesn’t, at all, I could put fresh and frozen and re heated in front of you, you’d never know.

I am a guy that loves my grills and smokers.  I love that I can smoke on a kettle grill, I have a huge side box old school smoker, but once I got this it is just too easy to not use most of the time.  The results are dead simple consistent.

There is one caution, one time I ran 2 briskets and got distracted and ended up with a grease fire.  It was easy to put out and didn’t get out of hand but it could have.  This is because you have so much fat dripping into one area.

What I suggest is the smoker comes with a small pan which you fill with water, replace it with a aluminum throw away oven pan, so it has more capacity.  Empty and refill it say every two hours.  This pan isn’t just for moisture the finished pucks are pushed into it and extinguished.

Next is if you are only using one to three of the racks, put one of the aluminum pans on the lowest rack and let it catch your fat drippings.  This helps keep your smoker a lot cleaner anyway.  With three racks I can still do two shoulders, 3 rib racks and  couple rings of sausage.

If you love smoked meat but don’t relish the constant tweaking for old school smoking check this thing out.  And as always don’t be a purist.  Smoke up to about 160 for your meat.  Then wrap in foil and finish in the oven at about 225.  This is called the Texas Cheat, and as a good friend of mine says, if you are not cheating you are not trying.  The oven finish is the way to go, and let me tell you a secret, a real secret.

This is exactly how I pull off freezing roasts and heating them up and them tasting so great.  I don’t finish them!  I smoke up to 160 (it is called “the stall”) and I wrap in foil, then vac seal and freeze what we are not going to use right away.  When we want to use it, we defrost it, pop it in the oven and finish it the day we eat it.  Now guys, that is a real Spirko hack and until I published this review, it was a closely guarded secret.

Oh and hey, want to blow it up for Thanksgiving?  Get one of these, quarter your bird, smoke it, then wrap and oven finish.  Don’t try to cook it heavy in the smoker, go lite, about 2.5 hours, just to season it with smoke, then cook in wrapped foil until it is perfectly tender.

Do this and you will never have a dry turkey again!  Sure it won’t be a big giant browned bird on the table but how long do they stay that way anyway, in the end it is what is on the plate that matter.  So for all these reasons and more check out the Bradley Smokers Original Smoker today.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

P.S. – Of course I hate one trick pony type things, like a smoker that only smokes.  So check this out, when I have big gatherings one of my favorite thing to provide is brats and sausages.  It is finger food, help yourself type stuff.  So I cook them on my grill and then put them in the smoker, I put in no wood pucks and simply set the Bradley to about 120 degrees.

It is then a hot box to keep them warm, I can now have a beer and socialize and people just help themselves.  Just make sure after about an hour to clean it out or you may find something very unappetizing next week when you go to cook again!

 

Kuhn Rikon Julienne Peeler Item of the Day

kunEvery day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is the Kuhn Rikon Julienne Peeler.  I covered this item in my episode Episode-1820- 15 Items for the Prepper Kitchen and How to Use Them.  But it is an great item especially for those of you on the low carb lifestyle.  But I can tell you anyone will love the dish I am going to tell you how to make today with this peeler.

First I think any kitchen should have a good Julienne Peeler in it.  From Asian dishes, to making salads look and taste awesome and more they are just a great tool.  They do so much and cost so little.

But when it comes to making zoodles, they really shine.  What is a zoodle, a made up word meaning zucchini noodle.  They are simple to make but there is a right and a wrong way to do it.  There are also cool machines like The Sprializer that making them a bit thicker and in long sprials.  Those machines are not expensive but they are one more big item in your kitchen and a Julienne Peeler fits in a knife drawer.

In the PS I now  have a video showing you how to make these.  It is really easy though, his is all you do, take a few zucchinis and just julienne them, turning them as you go.  As you get to the seedy part you are going to stop.  Toss that to the chickens, ducks or compost bin and go to the next one.  You can cut bit into the seeds it won’t hurt anything but you will notice a point that you have worn it out.

NOW COMES THE IMPORTANT PART, you Do NOT COOK THEM THIS WAY.  Put them into a strainer and sprinkle kosher salt on them.  How much?  Not a lot just enough to coat the top, toss them around, give them a bit more and leave them to drain into the sink or a bowl.  In about 10 minutes they should be very wet, if not add a tiny bit more salt.  After a few times you will know how much to add.  Over the next 30 minutes turn them by hand 2-3 times.  Make sure they drain at least 30 minutes.

Now put down a couple layers of paper towel and spread them out (don’t be all fussy about one layer, but just spread them out).  Let them sit that way, perhaps flip a few times.  This is less work to do than to read and write about.

I generally do this all when I start cooking, once they are on the paper towels they can sit there an hour if you need them too.  When everything else is about ready, heat up some olive oil (I like garlic infused for this) in a skillet, toss in your zoodles with any other seasonings (no salt though of course) toss them at medium heat for a minute or two.  Finish with some real butter melted in and serve.  This is a go to side dish for grilled steaks at my house.

The salt is the key, zucchini squash have a huge amount of water in them.  The salt draws it out and they taste like and have the texture of an actual noodle.  I won’t say they taste just like spaghetti, what I am saying is if you ate them blind folded you would swear they are a type of thin noodle.  Omit the salt treatment and they are fine but they taste like well zucchini rather than a noodle.

Pasta is one thing I really have missed going back to low carb living, until I found these.  Once I did it isn’t even an issue any more.  And here is a big bonus!  If you have a garden you likely grow zucchini and get a lot of them.  Miss a day of picking and you end up with big zucs, they start to get tough, way too seedy, etc.  Well when you julienne them, that issue is not a problem and you discard the big seeds anyway.  In fact we have found zucchini about twice the size you find in stores make the best zoodles.

So give zoodles and the Kuhn Rikon Julienne Peeler a shot.  If you already have a julienne peeler you are happy with by all means just try the zoodles.  But that being said if you need one or a new one, get the Kuhn.  It is the highest quality tool of its kind I can find.  Kuhn Rikon is a Swiss Based company, think Swiss Army Knives, they make some of the best cooking tools on the planet.  Besides with this tool being under 11 dollars, why wouldn’t you buy the best?

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

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Thai Whole Dried Chiles by Asia-Trendy – Item of the Day

chilipeps

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day one of my favorite cooking ingredients, Thai Whole Dried Chiles by Asia-Trendy.  First let me say I don’t even understand how they are able to provide these we free shipping at this price.  These things ship right from Thailand, it is on the fricken package when you get it.  This means you know you are getting the real thing.

Next they do bring some heat to the party but they are not a blow your brains out of your ears type of heat, just a nice warming heat that makes you know yea, that is a chile pepper in there!  Lost of people use them re-hydrated in stir fry and the like, that way if you actually eat them whole they pack a big punch but if you just use them to flavor the dish again we are back to a nice warming heat.

You can also take them for a spin in your coffee grinder to make a pretty impressive chili powder, or cut it with some dehydrated garlic for a bit more mellow heat and a nice addition in flavor from the garlic.

Yet my favorite use and the entire reason I tracked these down years ago is my famous chile, garlic, pepper oil.  My god this stuff makes the best chicken wings you will ever eat.  Here is what you need and how you make it.

Jack’s Famous Chile Garlic Pepper Oil

  • About 1-2 dozen dried chile peppers
  • About a half a hand full (about 3 TBS) black pepper corns (Tellicherry is best)
  • One whole garlic bulb or about 10 cloves
  • 2 cups of peanut oil

Crumble the peppers into a sauce pan, add in the black pepper corns, peal the garlic cloves and throw them in whole.  Add the 2 cups of oil and put on the stove, heat over low heat stirring often until you see the first signs of the peppers and garlic starting to fry.  DO NOT FRY THEM, what I mean is when  you see the first signs of bubbles forming, kill the heat.  It is best to use a thermometer and heat to at least 275 degrees. 

Set a towel on the counter and put the pot on it, cover it with a lid.  Fold the towel around the pot to hold the heat in, let it sit for at least 2 hours until oil is cool.  Now put everything into a blender, VitaMix, Nutri Ninja, what ever you have.  Blend the crap out of it until everything is pulverized.

Now strain into a ball jar, it should make right about one pint of oil.  This is great oil for cooking anything you want garlic and heat added to and again the heat really is not that intense, it is mostly incredible flavor.  Trust me you can’t buy anything like this, most chile oil in stores and restaurants is crap, you have to make it yourself if you want something this good and fresh.

My favorite use is on chicken wings.  Put your wings in a bowl and add enough to coat them all, toss them well to evenly coat.  You can roast or gill them strait away or add on a dry rub of your choice, if you want my dry rub for this tune in to today’s episode of TSP which will be Episode 1908.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

P.S. – This stuff is one of those things that makes a great gift for people who like to cook.  Put it in a nice bottle or jar, with nice label or what have you.

P.P.S. For best results while it can be left out for a time, store it in the fridge.  There is no real risk of botulism if not refrigerated because even though we use moist garlic, by heating to 275 degrees we are 25 degrees above the temps needed to kill all botulism spores. Additionally almost anything you cook with it will have a surface temp above 250.  But it will simply keep fresh longer in the fridge, so you know what to do!

Chard/Cary 9.5 quart Smart Pressure Canner and Cooker – Item of the Day

cannerEvery day I will bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is the Chard/Cary 9.5 quart Smart Pressure Canner and Cooker

In the past I have recommended the PowerPressure Cooker XL, as it was the only electric canner guaranteed to be safe for pressure canning by the manufacture.

The Chard is better in so many ways, while also being guaranteed safe by the manufacturer for pressure canning, it has several additional features that make me want to exchange my PowerPressure Cooker, they are…

  1. The Chard allows you to can quart vs. pint jars.  In fact with it you have the ability to can, four quart jars, six pint jars, eight jelly jars or ten half-pint jars in one batch
  2. It also does a separate water bath or steam function for water bath canning
  3. It uses true petcocks and hence can be used at higher altitudes then the PowerPressure Cooker
  4. It has twenty built in safety features to ensure your safety.

Additionally while I brought this product to you first almost a year ago it was constantly sold out and would go up in price as quantity dropped.  Cary now seems to have supply side worked out and they are readily available for under 120 dollars with free shipping.

Remember you can always see the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here.

P.S. – The PowerPressure Cooker XL is available in sizes like 6 and 10 quart but that is all about capacity, none of them are tall enough for the lid to go on with quart sized jars inside of them.  I really don’t recommend it.

P.P.S. – I  have changed the item name here to the “Chard/Cary 9.5 quart Smart Pressure Canner and Cooker – Item of the Day” because the same product has been marketed under both names.  This is because Chard was founded Richard Carey, or as the brand came from riCHARD Carey, you can read about that here on the chard website.  Just know if the product says Carey or Chard it is the exact same product, I have verified this with the manufacturer.

Sadaf Sumac – Item of the Day

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is Sadaf Sumac.  Note that this is middle eastern sumac not our native variety here in North America.  While there are some similar characteristics sumac from the Mediterranean and Arabic parts of the world is a different species with a long history of culinary use.

Dorothy and I really got hooked on this stuff when we found a recipe for “carrot fries” which are really just roasted carrots with this stuff on them, the recipe is really simple.  Cut carrots into sticks, coat with peanut oil, sprinkle Sumac, Salt and Pepper on them, roast at 425 until done, (20-30 minutes depending on your oven).  We use the “convection roast” setting on our oven when we make these and they come out great.

Yesterday I made up some Lamb Heart, Lamb Sausage and Oyster Mushroom stew.  I posted that on facebook and you can see it here.  I used Sadaf Sumac in the homemade lamb sausage that went in that stew, I have to tell you it was pretty fantastic.

This stuff is great on fish and chicken as you might imagine as it has a tart lemon like flavor much like its US cousins we all know and love.  On that note, the reason for this is it is high in ascorbic acid (AKA vitamin C).

Hence it is natural anti oxidant and has quite a bit of good press around health benefits.  There is a pretty good write up about that here.  This is about the best quality stuff I was able to find and at less than 10 bucks with free shipping on prime a 12 ounce container will last you a long time for not much money.  So consider adding Sadaf Sumac to your spice cabinet today and expand your culinary options.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

P.S. – I guess I have to say it, no this isn’t poison sumac and no variety of sumac with red berries is poison sumac.  So no this stuff will not make you itch.  That said anyone with an allergy to cashews may have an allergy to sumac, so keep that in mind if it effects you or your family.  Bluntly always use all new food items with caution on the first use.

 

Camp Chef Ranger II Table Top Stove – Item of the Day

stove

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is the Camp Chef Ranger II Table Top Stove.  I bread down the value of this stove into four distinct areas.

First if you are on electric for your stove and the power goes out you do not want to try to run your range with your generator, unless you have a huge one.  Running a coffee maker puts a hit on a small gen set let alone a stove.  So it is back up cooking for those of you with electric.

Second is for the camper that “truck camps”.  I mean this is no back packing stove but mostly when I camp now I have my truck with me.  So between this stove and my Steven Harris battery system in my truck box, I feel like I am on grid.

Third is for you folks with electric stoves even when you do have power.  Look cooking on gas is just a hell of a lot more fun then electric.  This little thing has as much power as my gas range in my kitchen.  Many home cooks would love to have a gas range but just don’t have gas service and a big propane pig is not practical.  This is the next best thing.

Fourth is what I consider life style enhancement for all of us.  Let’s say it is a beautiful morning on a non work day.  You and your family want a nice breakfast.  Well go out on the porch or the deck and cook outside.  Just set this guy up on a table and get to work.  Get yourself a nice French Press and boil some water and make coffee or hot tea to go with it.

adapterA quick note, this stove comes with a hose and is designed to run on 20 gallon grill sized propane tanks.  If you want to run small one pound cans (which is really convenient for this stove) you need to add the small bottle adapter to your order.

I can’t tell you how impressed I am with the value of the Camp Chef Ranger II Table Top Stove.  It really blows me away that you can get a portable two burner stove that cooks as nice as my 1200 dollar range in my kitchen does for under 100 bucks.  And like everything I recommend it is very highly rated on Amazon with 4.5 star with over 130 reviews.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

Mushroom House Dried Oyster Mushrooms – Item of the Day

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is Mushroom House Dried Oyster Mushrooms.  In my view oyster mushrooms are one of the more underrated mushrooms out there.  To me they are also one of the mushrooms that I feel actually benefits and becomes better when dehydrated.

Fresh oyster mushrooms are pretty good but they lack intense flavor, the also lack any real “body” instead they are very soft and easily over cooked.  However when we dry them and re-hydrate them they come up a lot more firm and their taste intensifies.

The other big thing is of course how storable these guys are.  How well do they store you ask?  Well the package I recently bought had a best by date over 2 and a half years beyond the date I received them and we all know that manufactures practice more than just a little CYA on expiration dates.

So what is the best way to use these guys.  First soak them in water until they re-hydrate and that takes about 20-30 minutes.  Save that water for cooking or making stock.  Then slice and prepare them in what ever way you see fit.  I like sauting them in butter and garlic, then toss in some sweet and hot peppers, saute a bit longer, then add some greens like baby arugula and baby spinach just to wilt, then add in two duck eggs and gently scramble.  Top with your cheese of choice, Gruyere is really nice with this and you have a gormet breakfast in a matter of 15 minutes.  Yes you can use chicken or other eggs for this, I just happen to have a lot of duck eggs always around.

There are tons of recipes I could give you for these but I thought I might give you a recipe using 100% long term storables that would really blow you away, and make it very fast too.  Here is what you need.

Procedure –  Put water in large cooking pot and add mushrooms, turn on to medium heat and heat until steaming hot.  By then mushrooms should be soft enough to work with.  Use a strainer and remove mushrooms, this is simple because they float.

Now add dehydrated veggies and a big pinch of each of rosemary and thyme, add about two big pinches of parsley.  Bring to a full boil, while you wait for that, run some cool water on the mushrooms so you don’t burn your fingers, shake them dry and cut them on a cutting board into thin strips, sort of like “mushroom noodles” (moodles?).  Then add them back to the pot.  When it comes to a boil add bouillon or Better Than Bouillon stir to dissolve.  Also now add the can of crushed tomatoes.  (Costco has some awesome organic ones).

Simmer until the mushrooms and vegetables are to your liking, stir in canned beef including the broth (don’t use a variety with “gravy”) bring back to a full simmer to heat beef through.

Serve with a topping of fresh chives or green onion, if you don’t have any on hand use dehydrated chives.  Add salt and pepper to taste, best to do that at the end as the canned beef and bouillon both have a significant amount of salt.

This all takes less time to do that it does to type it all out.  The soup comes out amazing and it is a great use for canned beef, allowing you to keep it for long term storage but still rotate it by eating what  you store and storing what you eat.  You can adjust quantities to your liking and it absolutely can be made with fresh meat, bone stocks, etc.  One really nice over the top addition is some green snow peas right at the end!

Just a few ways you can use this awesome ingredient and remember they are dehydrated so they weight about 1/4 of their weight when fresh, hence a one pound bag that sells for just under 17 bucks is equivalent to about 4 pounds of raw oyster mushrooms.

I have tried many different brands of oyster mushrooms but so far, Mushroom House Dried Oyster Mushrooms are my favorite, so check them out to day and add this great and versatile storable to your pantry.

To store them after opening I just put them in ball jars with a big pinch of rice in the bottom to act as a desiccant, there is no need for dry canning/vac sealing them.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

P.S. – You will notice that the dehydrated veggies all are linked to one gallon sizes on Amazon, the brand is Harmony House.  I have always loved their quality and when I buy this stuff I buy it in bulk but you can use any dried carrots, celery and onion in this recipe.  I recently did a bulk order on stuff like this with North Bay Trading Company and was impressed with their quality, service and pricing so you might try them as well.

Perfect Cook – Digital Instant Read Thermometer – Item of the Day

perfcook

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day the Perfect Cook – Digital Instant Read Thermometer.  This isn’t a hard item to figure out but there is a big misconception about the most valuable thing it does for you.

Many people feel that a meat thermometer is so you don’t under cook meat.  I refer to these people as “the people who ruin meat and are not worthy of a cows sacrifice to create a steak”.

Now don’t get me wrong there are minimum temps different meats should be cooked to, but very few people would actually eat and under cooked piece of chicken.  The problem tehre is you take the poor bird out before it is done, cut into it and ruin that wonderful roasting you had going as now it must go back in cut open.

So yes, a meat thermometer can help you make sure meat is done, but that is its second greatest use.  Its higher use is to ensure meat is not over cooked.  And that is why you need one of these.  I have gotten pretty good at doing steaks by eye, no matter how, frying pan, broiler, gas grill, charcoal, you name it I can nail it by eye and touch.

Well that is until I am trying to make 4 steaks and they have been requested to be 1 rare, 2 medium rare and 1 medium well (which I call almost ruined).  With a thermometer you remove each steak at just the right time, every time.   What you want your steak “well done”, okay you will have to do it yourself, I don’t ruin meat.  Perhaps I can interest you in say a pot roast

Seriously though, every good cook should have a good instant read meat thermometer.   And the Perfect Cook – Digital Instant Read Thermometer is the best one I have found under 25 bucks, hell it is the best one I have found under 50 bucks but it is only 22 dollars.  There are two things you need in a tool like this, first speed and the second is accuracy.

This one gives you a reading within one degree of accuracy in about 5 seconds or less.  It will change the way you look at your grill because now you will know you can nail the internal temp you are looking for every time.  It will also please your guest and in spite of my humor above, even the ones that insist on a “well done steak” even if you and I never understand their thinking.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

Mr. Coffee Electric Coffee Grinder – Spice Grinder – Item of the Day

coffeeEvery day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is the Mr. Coffee Electric Coffee Grinder.  And yes it does a bang up job grinding coffee and occasionally I grind up some Mai Thai Coffee and drop it in my french press, but that is not my primary use for this tool.

To me this is the greatest ever dried vegetables and spice/herb grinder you can get your hands on for under 20 bucks.  In fact for Prime members this awesome tool is just 17.88 with free shipping.

I use this grinder to make hot pepper powders.  Garlic and onion powder from a store?  Never I buy dried onions and dried minced garlic in large quantities, I then make up powders as I need them in small quantities.  Just smell fresh made garlic or onion powder and you will see why.

I whip up my own spice mixes like this one I will cover on today’s show.

  • About a table spoon of each
    • Thyme
    • Dried garlic
    • Dried onion
    • Mustard Seed
    • Fennel Seed
    • Chili Powder
    • Dehydrated Celery (yea that is a secret)
    • Cumin
    • Tellicherry Black Pepper Corns (another secret)
    • Kosher or Sea Salt
  • Then about 3 table spoons of paprika
  • About 2 table spoons of parsley

This is all done by estimate by the way, not with spoons but you can do that if you want to.  This is a go to rub for poultry and fast grilled pork.  I just whipped up some for my buddy David to go on quail.  You can see that here.  The best thing with small pieces like quail, cut up chicken etc, is to put it in a large bowl and toss till well coated then grill.  For my go to finish basting sauce for this tune in to today’s show.

Anyway it is unlimited what you an do, did you see the celery above, we always have it on hand, grinding it gives you the same type of punch as celery seed but it sure costs less and it is more versatile.  You guys that grow 15 different hot peppers can go mad scientist with pepper blends.

The Mr. Coffee Electric Coffee Grinder is also equipped with what they call a “Chamber Maid Cleaning System”.  This little device you spin with your finger and it helps get out all the stuff hiding on the edges.  For actual cleaning though, the bowl is water tight!  Fill it just below the max fill line with water (don’t get the base wet), put the lid on, pulse for a few moments, dump it out, set it upside down to dry, DONE!

Lastly I bought my first one of these before I even started TSP, it lasted until this year, when I stupidly tried to grind oyster shell with it!  So I got a new one, and I have found its limits, no rocks or shells, LOL.  Trust me no kitchen specifically no prepper kitchen should be without this tool.

This item has 1100 plus reviews and 76% are 4 or 5 star.  If you read the negative reviews they seem to be either coffee snobs that want a 17 dollar grinder to grind with the precision of a 500 dollar tool, or people to dim to get the cord out of the storage space on the bottom.  Friends you can’t fix stupid but you can fix up some amazing rubs and powders with this fool proof tool

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