Six of the best breakfast gadgets
February is officially Hot Breakfast Month and these gadgets will allow you to enjoy warming brekkies, without spending an absolute age in the kitchen. Polly Weeks finds out more.
Breville VTP130 Traditional Crepe Maker, £30, from
There's no finer breakfast than pancakes, especially if they're accompanied by a mug of strong coffee, the morning newspaper and a lovely weekend ahead of you. This contraption will allow you to whip up a treat while relaxing at the table rather than standing over the hob. Mix up your batter and then, once the surface is nice and hot (there are five temperature control settings to choose from), put a ladle of your mix onto the hot plate and use the t-stick spreading tool provided to spread it evenly. This is a really good gadget, one you could bring out at dinner parties or to celebrate the forthcoming Shrove Tuesday. Don't like pancakes? Use it to whip up an omelette instead.
Egg them on
Lakeland Egg Cooker, £17.99, from www.lakeland.co.uk
How do you like your eggs in the morning? Boiled? Poached? Scrambled? In an omelette? Well, with this device you can have them any way you choose. Small enough it won't eat into your precious counter space, you can quickly cook a batch of eggs without cracking (sorry) under pressure. Fill up the base with water - the amount you pop in will dictate how you want your eggs cooked i.e. hard, soft or medium boiled - flick the switch and when the light goes out your eggs are cooked. Given you use water to cook it, you won't be surprised to hear the gadget works by steaming them. It's a lovely little device that will save on washing up big pots and pans.
Hotpoint MF IDC AX0
Milk Frother with Modern
Induction Technology, £69.99, from www.hughes.co.uk
In the late Nineties and early 2000s, milk frothers were all the rage. If you missed out the first time around or simply want to update yours, this is the device for you. Considering how quickly tech moves, it's no surprise that this modern-day version is a world away from earlier models. Begin by popping one of the two whisks into the device, then add your milk (up to 400ml) to the dishwasher-safe metal cup and turn the dial to one of four temperatures - cold (perfect for milkshakes), 40, 65, and 85 degrees centigrade. You can keep it simple or add ingredients such as chocolate chips for a deliciously creamy hot chocolate. With breakfast in mind, the obvious use is for cappuccinos, but why not use it to heat up milk for cereal? There's no greater breakfast than Weetabix with hot milk is there?
Fill them up
Deep Filled Sandwich
& Omelette Maker, £20, from www.qvcuk.com
Enjoy a protein-rich omelette for breakfast and keep hunger at bay until lunch. Easy enough to make when you're in a hurry, turn on the machine and while you're waiting for it to heat up (a green light will glow when it's ready), get the rest of your ingredients in order. Then add your veg/ham to the hot plates, pour on your whisked egg, close the lid and in a couple of minutes you'll have perfectly formed omelettes. You can also use the hot plates to make a hot sandwich - or make the most of the fact there's two plates and make both at the same time.
Cuisinart WAF1U Waffle Maker, £54, from www.currys.co.uk
For the ultimate weekend treat, create a batch of waffles and add your own toppings - whether that's blueberries or thick chocolate sauce. You'll need to make up your batter and turn on the machine to warm it up, but that's the hard work all done. Simply pour the mixture into the plates, close the lid and a light will glow to tell you when your Belgian breakfast is ready. When it comes to cleaning up, the plates are detachable and dishwasher safe.
On the go
Hamilton Beach Electric Breakfast Sandwich Maker, £29.99, from www.amazon.co.uk
If you're keen on a breakfast muffin or bap, this nifty little device is the gadget for you. Pop your favourite type of bread in the base, add cheese, cooked meat, then pop a raw egg into the relevant tray and add an additional slice of bread on top. Close the machine, wait for it all to cook and then remove the egg cooking plate (it just slides out) and there you go, your lovely warming breakfast bap (great for when you're on the go). Be careful of that yolk though, it has an annoying habit of dripping on your favourite shirt, tie or top!
App of the week
Breakfast food, free from the Google Play App Store
A fun game for children, especially if they're fussy and you want to get them interested in food. This app sees you make your own virtual breakfast, not only picking ingredients and 'cooking' them, but also heading outdoors to milk the cows and get fruit from the trees.
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