Nifty Kitchen Gadgets

Christmas and Valentine’s Day may be far behind us, but spring brings more excuses for gift-giving. Soon there will be Easter baskets to fill, brides to shower with housewares, and—at least in my family—a slew of birthday gifts to be purchased. Judy’s Parlor offers a selection of quirky culinary gifts from a company called Fred & Friends.

The To-Do Tattoo kit comes with 12 temporary tattoos and a skin-safe gel pen, so that those of us who write shopping lists on our hands can now do it neatly. Unfortunately, if you need more than seven items, you’re going to have to tattoo multiple list-grids up the length of your arm. Perhaps you’d be better off with a paper shopping list, organized by aisle.

There’s also a beakerlike measuring cup that measures not only cups and ounces, but also oddball amounts, like “one hundred penne rigate pasta” and “twenty thousand grains of rice.” It’s the perfect gift for the person in your life who really gets into contests in which you have guess how many gumballs are in a fishbowl. (Of course, for the cooks in your life, it’s hard to beat the OXO Angled Measuring Cup.)

Judy doesn’t recommend buying any of Fred’s spring-loaded food fight spoons for kids (unless you’re plotting against their parents), but she digs the Banana Handle. This bright yellow silicone gripper slides over thin pot handles (think All-Clad) and makes them safe to touch—perfect for a careless young cook or the seasoned chef who has it all.