Colored Paper Straws and Mason Jars

coloredstraw

colored-masonjar

Hottest item of the summer, mason jars and colored paper straws. I love and have gone through dozens. They are adorable at BBQ’s, summer Shabbos afternoons, or just a fun way to jazz up a cold drink.
Colored straws are available at www.greenpartygoods.com $8 for 50
Or from Etsy.com in polka dots and lots of colors.

And Colored Mason Jars (clear are available everywhere from Bed Bath & Beyond to Target), are available at www.greenpartygoods.com

Take Cover Knife Covers

knife-covers

While I’m grilling outside, I like to use my time well and start some of my slicing of vegetables and finishes while I am outside. That means carrying knives outside and then back inside and this can be dangerous. Edge guards made of hard plastic protect my knives in the drawer or while I carry them outside or to cooking classes.

$13.50 for a starter set of 3. Available at messermeister.com

Mini Herb Snips

miniherbsnip
Sharp kitchen shears for cutting chicken and meat are an important kitchen tool. This summer I discovered another tool I love, Herb Scissors. These sharp snippers are only four inches long so they are easy to maneuver between herb stems. A few weeks ago, I wrote about creating and herb garden and if you did, you might be enjoying your fresh herbs. Even if you buy fresh herbs, these scissors help with easy herb chopping. I chop them right into the marinade, dressing or sauce.

$15 at Williams-Sonoma.com

New Essential Grilling Tools

Gimmicky grilling tools come and go, just check out your local Home Goods or TJ Maxx for all the items that sound good but are really unnecessary and DON’T buy them. Throughout the summer, I do try many new products though and love to share the best ones, like cedar planks and the Grill Daddy grill cleaner.

A few more must-haves include….
veggie-pan
The Weber Style Grill Pan, made of sturdy, stick resistant stainless steel. It keeps small vegetables in place and still gives them a nice char. I tested many types and this was the hands-down favorite to maintain great grilling flavor while ensuring that the veggies don’t fall through the grates.

Available at Amazon.com for $20

tong
Oversize tongs make it easy to grab anything, big or small.
Available at oxo.com for $15

mitt
Heat-protective gloves with a silicone grip, so utensils don’t slip and you don’t get burned reaching to the far end of the grill. I like these because they are not too oversized.

Available at weber.com for $35

A Few Summer Must-Haves

strawberry-huller copy
Strawberry Huller $7.95 from Williams-Sonoma.com
Cute to look at, and perfect for summer salads, smoothies, fruit platters, shortcake, and stuffed strawberries. This fun kitchen tool quickly removes the leaves and stem from a strawberry.

Citrus Zeel-Peel $5.95 from Williams-Sonoma.com
Designed for best citrus peel removal, no bitter pith! It removes the peel in three simple steps. Just score your fruit with the peeler’s sharp hook, lift the skin with the tapered corner, then slip the peel through the round opening. Quickly and neatly peels whole citrus fruits. Ideal for grapefruits and oranges. Great for using the peels in iced tea, couscous salad, and sangria!

Silicone Zone Baking Mat

Silicone-Zone-Blossom-Baking-Mat-300x300 for $15.00
I’m crazy for silpat mats and use them regularly for cookie baking. They have come a long way in style recently. These 11 x 17 non-stick (no more greasing the pans needed and super easy cleanup too!), also serve as a handy guide for spacing cookie dough and look a bit better than the earlier versions. The mat is oven-safe, dishwasher, freezer and microwave safe too.

Available at lecookeryusa.com

Grill Daddy Pro, Best Grill Cleaner

bbq
Perfect for Dad on Father’s Day, Grill Daddy Pro, Best Grill Cleaner

Just add water to the handle, turn it on and the heat from the grill creates steam that cleans the grill grates in seconds. No more scrubbing and scraping. The stainless steel brush is safe on hot grills and this tool has made grilling and grill clean up so quick and easy. I’ve been bringing it to all BBQ’s and it’s a big hit.

Amazon.com has the best price, at $15.99, it’s a great gift for dad or for anyone who likes to grill.