"New kitchen appliances seem to be hit or miss" by: Jessica Shepard

   So, mom got herself an Instant Pot for Christmas and it’s kind of just sitting on the counter top.
   The excuse was that she’s always wanted one and there was an awesome sale.
   At least, that’s what she’s told us.
   My brother also took advantage of the same sale and has been taking more recipe risks than we have.
   He even brought one of his experimental recipes home for us to try and I’ve got to say – I’m not a fan.
   His recipe was for beer-steamed polish sausage for sauerkraut dogs.
   I’ve never gagged so hard in my life, outside of stomach flu, before I smelled that monstrosity.
   Mom managed to eat hers and remarked that it didn’t taste any different than a usually boiled sausage.
   I’m too picky about my preferred sausage, so I definitely skipped out on that dinner item.
   Even with that, mom keeps finding more recipes online to try and says we’ll get to them, but, we’re still eating the same meals over and over again.
   Not that I mind too much, I’m still leery for the Pot and it’s pressure-cooking wizardry.
   I mean the appliance says you can make yogurt with it and that’s terrifying in itself.
   I honestly thought she should have just picked up a rice cooker instead, but, no one listens to me.
   Still, we’re nearly a month into owning the Pot and it’s just sitting on the counter after my brother’s culinary foray.
   Also, my siblings and I pitched in to buy mom a Kitchen Aid stand mixer – another sale purchase!
   My brother and sister footed most of the bill while I was the person in charge of picking the color.
   Again, we’re used to hand mixers and mom received the gift just last week – post-Christmas baking frenzy and all.
   But, mom made happy squeaking sounds and didn’t stop smiling when she unpacked it, so, I guess it’s a win.
   I just don’t plan on using it any time soon.
   In short, new kitchen appliances sound cool and are great when bought on sale, but, I just don’t feel like they’re often worth buying.
   I mean, in the case of the mixer – I get it.
   But, the Pot, well, almost everything we’d use it for we’ve got pots and pans for or a crockpot.
   Which totally makes me see the appeal of all-in-one Pot cooking.
   I just don’t like having to learn new recipes when the old ones work fine and I know them mostly by heart.
   Plus, the Pot is supposed to cut cooking time in half or more.
   I like to use that extra steaming, boiling or sauté time to multitask around the house.
   Pressure cooking and those pre-selected cook time buttons are really going to encroach on my usual routines.
   The worst part is that I know there’s a learning curve to using both and I don’t have a slot of patience with that sort of thing.
   Hopefully, mom is going to be better at this than me.
   We’ll see what happens during the new year if this was a good investment or not.

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