10 kitchen must-have appliances for 2018
What’s on the menu for kitchen appliances in 2018? Clever designs that cater to our busy lives and cooking and entertaining needs by helping us prepare tasty, healthy meals more quickly and with less effort – sometimes while we’re out and about.
It’s a simple recipe for success: if you design a kitchen appliance or gadget that helps home cooks prepare the meals they enjoy in less time, with less effort and less mess, it will sell like hot cakes. The leading appliance designers have taken this ‘recipe’ and in 2018 will offer the following products:
1. Wi-Fi connected ovens and refrigerators
Appliance designers such as GE, LG and Samsung have created new ranges of ovens and refrigerators with Wi-Fi connection enabling you to remotely operate them via your smartphone and to access the web from a smartphone-style touch screen. This means you can set cooking programs and chilling options, check the contents of your refrigerator via ‘fridge cam’ photos, receive updates on food expiration, access the latest recipes and download your shopping list while you’re out.
Samsung’s Family Hub 2.0 refrigerator is currently available from Harvey Norman and The Good Guys and features a Wi-Fi enabled touchscreen that displays its interior via a ‘fridge cam’, creates shopping lists and food expirations alerts, and, via your smartphone, uploads your appointments, photos and notes, and gives you access to the internet and apps, like the Woolies grocery ordering app.
2. Refrigerators with multiple separate compartments
Major brands are catering to our busy lives and entertaining needs by designing refrigerators with multiple separate compartments of various sizes and temperature settings that not only make finding food easier but accommodate ready-to-eat food on trays and in packaging such as pizza and cake boxes and chill it to the right temperature. Some models feature a setting for thawing frozen food, so your meat or meal is ready for cooking when you are or as soon as you get home.
3. Multi-function cookers
Multi-function ovens are gaining popularity for their ability to offer a wider choice of cooking modes and save on precious benchtop space by being five or more appliances in one. In fact, the Kogan Multi-function Cooker replaces six appliances as it’s an electric stove, deep fryer, steam cooker, slow cooker, oven and yoghurt maker (surprising but true) in one, while Breville’s Smart Oven Air is an oven and grill that air fries, roasts, slow cooks, bakes, cooks pizza, grills, reheats and keeps food warm.
4. Induction cooking
Induction cooktops will continue to be a popular choice as they quickly heat pans and are generally more energy efficient than gas or electric ring models as their electromagnetic field only heats magnetic cookware when it touches the surface. The latest cooktops feature touch-pad and touch-and-swipe magnetic controls, which maintains their smooth, easy-to clean surface. While you may need to buy induction cookware, they will stay in good condition for longer as there’s no exposed flame or rough surfaces.
5. Healthy cooking options with sous-vide cooking, steam cooking and air frying
Appliances that offer sous-vide cooking – vacuum-sealing food and cooking it in a temperature controlled water bath – steaming and air frying are set to become a popular choice as they cater to our desire to create flavoursome and healthy meals. Breville’s The Quick Steam Digital, The One Precision Poacher and Smart Oven Air are all compact countertops appliances that cook food efficiently with less fat while keeping the flavours in. The Smart Oven Air is also a multi-function appliance, as it’s an oven and grill in one that air fries food as well as roasting, slow cooks, pizza, grills, bakes, reheats and keeps food warm.
Harvey Norman’s The Belling Black Series Oven is a steam combination oven and warming drawer, which warms and defrosts food. In addition to steam, it offers convection, fanned grill, microwave and oven cooking, with 80 automatic cooking programs and LED touch screen controls. Another choice is the Kogan Multi Cooker with Sous Vide Function enables you to cook food in the sous vide method as well as roast, bake, sauté, slow cook, simmer, steam, warm, and make yoghurt and rice!
To help catch and remove fat while cooking, use a silicone cooking mat from Fish Pond. As the silicone surface is non-stick, it doesn’t require oil or butter and efficiently drains away fat and any oil as it cooks.
6. Retro style appliances
Our enduring love of retro style will see an ongoing selection of refrigerators, ovens and stoves with curved edges, smooth finishes and stainless steel detailing in both bold colours such as cherry red, yellow and French blue and soft gelato pink, lemon yellow, sage green and light blue. Go retro with a red Belling Richmond Induction Freestanding Cooker and rangehood from Harvey Norman and Domayne or introduce a vintage vibe with small appliances such as the Morphy Richards toasters and kettles from Harvey Norman in soft pink, stone, teal, and pale blue, as well as white, black and grey silver and copper.
7. Return of the food processor!
Before the Thermomix came to Australia in 2001, food processors like the Magimix and Breville Kitchen Wizz, which sliced, diced, pulverized and blended in the blink of an eye were a fixture in many kitchens. In the ‘70’s and ‘80s they made it quick and easy to prepare dishes such as pesto sauce, guacamole, carrot cake and pumpkin soup quick and today, with our love of fresh sauces, dips, soups and salads, they’re experiencing a renewed pride of place on our benchtops (those acai and banana blends that fill bowls in hip cafes take seconds to make in a food processor!).
The latest range of food processors in a wide choice of styles and prices by leading brands including Breville, Sunbeam, Russell Hobbs, Kambrook and KitchenAid are available from major retailers and Appliances Online.
8. Pasta and noodle makers
Our enduring love of Asian and Italian dishes has inspired the creation of a new generation of pasta and noodle makers. The Philips Pasta and Noodle Maker automatically mixes, kneads and extrudes fresh pasta or noodles within 15 minutes and can be programmed via its LED display to make seven pasta shapes including spaghetti, penne, fettucine and lasagna sheets.
Our desire to quickly and easily create quick and easy healthy dishes – and get our kids to eat more vegies – will surely keep the spiralizer a popular gadget choice. The Joseph Joseph Spiro spiralizer from Yellow Octopus collects as it grates and spirals food within its hand-held, BPA-free design. It also features a soft-grip lid for easy turning, and two guide arms that help keep food straight as you twist.
10. Clever gadgets and ‘helper’ accessories
Clever kitchen gadgets will continue to be popular simply because they make every day cooking chores quicker, easier and less messy. Of the seemingly endless selection of gadgets on the market, a few standouts come from Dreamfarm’s range, which features gadgets with names that sound like they come from Mars including the Levoop adjustable level measuring spoon for scooping an accurate amount of powdered product such as ground coffee, protein power, and baby formula; the Vebo silicone cooking basket and vegetable steamer and drainer in one; the Onpot which rests the lid on the side of the pot so you don’t have to put a hot lid down on your benchtop, which can leave a mark or steam water behind; and the Fledge Kg flip, edge cutting board which catches liquids, weighs food and prevents it rolling off.
What is your favourite kitchen gadget?
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