Tag: Pillsbury Bake-off


Hail to KitchenAid and Cooking to Win

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The other day I asked some friends what their favorite kitchen appliance was, not counting stove and refrigerator. Among the favorites were counter ovens (such as Cuisinart’s Brick Oven), immersion blenders, a good set of knives (love my santoku), food processors, and blenders. But, the hands-down winner was the KitchenAid Stand Mixer. It didn’t seem to matter what model they had, those who own one find it indispensable. And, of course, I have one. Her name is Fiona. She’s one of KitchenAid’s Professional models with a bowl that lifts into place.

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I recently rearranged my very limited counter space to bring Fiona to the front. I don’t use her as much as I should but am hopeful that her more prominent position on the counter will change that. In fact, I used Fiona yesterday to make cookies. Yes, it was very hot in my house, but I had a cookie craving. And I caved.

Fiona is not my first KitchenAid Stand Mixer. My first, which was lost in a move, was the more “traditional” white. One of the main selling points of the KitchenAid Stand Mixer is its longevity. The other day, I was looking at an ad for the mixers. Yes, there were colors our ancestors knew–white and off white (now almond)–but there are so many others from which to choose. Now personally, I don’t know why anyone would want a gunmetal gray, but if you do, it’s there. And the green apple is gorgeous, as are the blue willow and buttercup. I wonder what those who bought the first model back in 1919 would think about the colors today’s cooks have available.

In order to be a kitchen workhorse, the KitchenAid Stand Mixer has had to prove its sturdiness. And these mixers are no lightweights, as anyone who has had to lift one very often can attest. But, did you know that the first one weighed 69 pounds! The Hobart Company, maker of industrial mixers, wanted to give restaurants an alternative to the large mixers that sat on the floor. And with that, Fiona’s ancestor was born. And we thank them for that. That and making it a more manageable weight.

Cooking to Win

Many of us who like to cook fantasize about entering cooking contests. Some do more than fantasize and actually enter a recipe–or several. Alas, few of us ever have a recipe chosen. We keep trying and pass the time watching cooking competitions on television. Whether you watch the various competitions on the Food Network or shows such as Bravo’s Top Chef, we all have the chance to live vicariously through the competitors–amateur and professional.

(Incidentally, am I the only one who is amazed when someone on, say, a Food Network burger competition, admits to not actually cooking the burger before sending in the recipe?)

The other day, I was watching a rerun of the Pillsbury Bake-off. I searched online for the next one and found that you can now vote for finalists. Check it out on the Pillsbury Bake-off site.

Here are a few cooking contests you might consider entering. You never know when your’s might be the prize-winning entry.

Best of the South Recipe Contest

Deadline is October 1, 2009. Grand prize: $5000.

1st French’s LIVE National Cook-Off

Grand Prize: $25,000

Submissions end October 31, 2009

Selection period runs November 8 through November 25 and includes online voting.

There will be a live cook-off in February or March.

Jif Most Creative Peanut Butter Sandwich Contest

This one’s for kids between the ages of 6 and 12. Deadline: November 13, 2009.

First prize is a $25,000 scholarship. Four runners-up will receive $2500 scholarships.

If you know of a cooking contest, please e-mail foodies@knife-fork-spoon.com with details, and I’ll post it here.

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