Friday, November 13, 2009

Oh, Kitchen Scale, How Do I Love Thee?

My kitchen scale is this model, found for less than half of retail at Tuesday Morning.

When it comes to kitchen gadgets, I, like Alton Brown, try to eschew single-use items in favor of tools that serve many different purposes (my beloved waffle maker being the notable exception to this rule). In that vein, it should hardly be surprising that my kitchen scale ranks among my all-time favorites. Among the ways it earns its place on my rather limited countertops:
  • European recipes, which are now readily available thanks to the internet, often use weights instead of measures
  • Bread recipes that give weights for the flour produce a much more consistent product than measures (I compared once on a recipe that gave both, and found that a weight that should have measured 1 c. by volume was only 3/4!)
  • Invaluable for changing the yield for recipes that call for 1 (15-ounce) can, etc., or for when your container size doesn't match up to those in the recipe. Fresh vegetables are also often called for by weight (e.g. 2 pounds of potatoes)
  • Portioning out hard-to-measure types of pasta (2oz. dry pasta = 1 serving, regardless of shape)
  • Not sure if you have enough yarn to finish that second sock or glove? Weigh the finished item, then the remaining yarn, and compare. If you're the type to plan ahead, you can use the scale to wind two exactly equal balls of yarn before you begin.
  • Know exactly how much yarn you used for on a project, and how much is left by weighing the last partial skein. You can figure out the yards per ounce by dividing the amounts on the label. If both a weight and length aren't given, look up the yarn on Ravelry's database (registration required), or wind off and weigh 10-20 yards and use that figure.
  • Use to estimate postage when you aren't sure whether to stick that extra stamp on.

1 comment:

Michelle said...

I have this exact model, too. My husband bought it for me, he says, but he really bought to weigh my sons' pinewood derby cars for Cub Scouts. I also use it for postage.

Favorite kitchen uses include making sure both layers of my layer cake are equal and splitting dough into two equal pizzas or into 24 equal rolls or whatever.