There are few pleasures in life that beat a glass of fresh-squeezed orange juice. We’ve compared Williams-Sonoma’s Vintage Manual Juicer with the newly improved L’Equip electric pulp-ejecting juicer (Model 226) to help you find the best way to create your own liquid gold.
|What it Juices
||Anything: The new model features a wider feed tube (3-inch diameter) to accommodate whole apples (small or medium).
|Juicing Speed & Ease of Operation
||Cut oranges in quarters or smaller, otherwise juice may spill over the top. There's no need to peel, which saves time. Manual lever that smashes fruit on a grid doesn't require muscle.
||Throw in (peeled) orange after orange and they're juiced in 10 seconds or less. 700-watt motor makes Model 226 the most powerful home juicer on the market. But if you think this machine is effortless, try peeling 7 oranges just to make a medium-sized glass.
||Very good. A little pulp may get in. Pressing with peel can make juice slightly bitter.
||Very good. Juice is pulp-free. A filter in the pitcher keeps out the pulp that gets through the machine. The mechanism aerates the juice, creating a foamy layer on top.
||Detachable grid for easy pulp disposal- necessary between every couple presses. Hand wash.
||Pulp collects in a dishwasher-safe container at the back for easy disposal.
||Heavy duty die-cast aluminum with nonskid feet. Bright orange enamel and vintage design make it fun and eye-catching.
||Black and silver. Looks like a space pod that has arrived on Earth to crush our fruits and vegetables.
||$29 plus shipping
||Williams-Sonoma, Internet/catalogue only
||Sur La Table in Woodmere, exclusive.
Vinegar from the Valley … In their former lives as restaurateurs in the San Francisco Bay area, Albert and Kim Katz relied on artisan products from California’s Napa Valley. But after 10 years in the kitchen, the couple decided to go direct: They moved to Napa and began creating their own oils, vinegars and honey under the name Katz and Co.
Their products, treats such as citrus blossom honey and Meyer lemon olive oil, are for cooks who like to work with the finest ingredients. Under their two brands, Branches and Kitchen Line, the Katzes have unveiled some intriguing concoctions, including Sonoma Trio vinegar, which gets its strong red-wine taste from Merlot, Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon, and Late Harvest vinegar, with a delicate, sweet taste that comes from grapes left on the vine an extra month to concentrate the sugar.
The latest addition to the Katz collection is the unfiltered Katz Rock Hill Ranch Suisun Valley Extra Virgin Olive Oil, cold-pressed by a Jesuit monk. Made from a variety of hand-picked olives, it has a clean, grassy flavor with fruity undertones.
Availability: Miles Farmers Market in Solon, or by mail from Katz and Co., 1-800-676-7176 or www.katzandco.com.
Cost: The Katz Rock Hill Ranch Suisun Valley Extra Virgin Olive Oil is $19.99, the Kitchen Line Sonoma Trio Vinegar is $11.99 and Kitchen Line Late Harvest Sauvignon Blanc Vinegar $9.99. Quantities are limited.
Simply One Spoon …Cooks now have the option of dumping all those tiny measuring spoons in favor of a single, streamlined device. Swiss company Dalla Piazza is introducing an adjustable measuring spoon, a smaller version of the award-winning Nuscup adjustable measuring cup. The durable, easy-to-clean Nuscup Mini measures both wet and dry ingredients with the help of a moveable rubber thumb knob. Measurements range from 1/8 teaspoon to 2 tablespoons. Another perk is that Nuscup Minis are magnetic, so you can stick your one-and-only measuring spoon on the fridge for easy access.
Availability: To find a retailer, call (905) 764-1121 or
Cooking Comfort …Beautiful wood and tile floors can be hard on a body. Stand in comfort sans sensible shoes with Gel Pro Chef’s Mats from Let’s Gel. They’re soft, shock absorbing and ideal for people with back pain, foot pain or arthritis or anyone who spends hours working in the kitchen. According to president Robb McMahan, about 40 percent of customers purchase two of the nonslip, stain-resistant, easy-to-clean mats — one for the stove, one for the sink.
Availability: Sur La Table in Woodmere, or online at www.letsgel.com