To earn a title like "Gadget Guru," you'd expect America's Test Kitchen's Lisa McManus to be a lover of unitaskers, but the opposite is true: she's anti-gadget. That's good news for followers of her reviews; to get a recommendation from her, a product has to be well-made and truly necessary. In an interview with the L.A. Weekly, she recently shared her thoughts on a few of the best and worst gadgets on the market — and why a strawberry huller is worth it.
McManus has a lot to say about the badly designed but popular gadgets out there. She is especially hard on the brand Joseph Joseph, which makes good-looking, appealing gadgets that she finds "always disappointing" when it comes to function. Most gimmicky chopping tools also get a thumbs down. Instead, she says, "Just pick up your knife!"
A strawberry huller from Chef'n gets the pass, though. While McManus would normally just pull out her paring knife to get the job done, she realized the huller's usefulness when a group of 9-year-olds helped out in her kitchen and were able to hull strawberries in seconds, a task she wouldn't have given to them with a sharp paring knife.
No big surprises with her other favorite kitchen tools: her All-Clad 12-inch stainless tri-ply frying pan, 12-inch Lodge cast iron skillet and OXO tongs. Even the Gadget Guru trusts the tried-and-true over the new and flashy.
Read more: Q & A With Lisa McManus at the L.A. Weekly
What are your favorite (or least favorite) kitchen gadgets?