Monday, August 11, 2008

Silly kitchen gadget No. 16

I'm on the fence about this batter dispenser. I suspect others are too, since it was on the discount table at Williams Sonoma ($25 down from $35). If it were marketed solely for pancake batter, I would roll my eyes at it as one more uni-tool requiring extra cleanup. Really, it's not that hard to make reasonably uniform pancakes with a little practice.

(Tangent: I just found Tim's blog, The Second Pancake after he left a comment on my Creamery conundrum post. Great blog-name concept backed by beautiful photos, good writing and tasty recipes. End tangent.)

But as the side panel of the box notes, you can also use this for other kinds of batters that might be a little harder to dispense evenly: madeleines, waffles, muffins. It's the madeleines that get me. If you mess up those, they're not pretty at all. And if you were baking a lot and wanted uniform cookies, this might be really handy.

What do you think? Do you have one of these? Would you like to have one?


  1. I bought one when it was marked down to $8 (!) at Smart and Final, just couldn't resist. I used it a couple of times for waffles & pancakes, but it is so fussy to fill and such a pain to clean that I gave it up. I've never made madelines, so maybe it would be worth it for that.

  2. For Madeleines, I fill a large funnel with batter and hold my finger over the end. I find it much more controllable than this sort of dispenser, because you know the end is going to get gummed up and the thing will leak everywhere. At least with the funnel you are already committed to getting your fingers a little messy.

  3. It looks like a bit of a pain. I sometimes use a cookie scoop for a thicker batter, but otherwise I'd just use a spoon. Much less washing up, even if I drop it everywhere!

  4. I've told you before but it bears repeating: I LOVE this feature of your blog. I'm fascinated by the brains (in the heads of industrial engineers maybe?) that dream up such useless gadgets and by the human urge to buy them. Yard sales were invented to deal with such items.

    To answer your questions, no I don't have one and no I don't want one. But then I won't even use an electric can opener.

  5. Thanks, Pam! Everyone's trying for a better mousetrap, I think.

    Ayse, that's an excellent tip. A funnel's probably way easier to to clean, too.

    Kathi, at least it was only $8! I've never heard of Smart and Final. Is it like Tuesday Morning?

  6. You know, what *does* appeal to me about this is the fact that the Lions Club members used to use something like this for the pancake dinners of my youth.

  7. Lin, that's a sweet memory. For measuring out in bulk, I could see the utility of this, if it worked well.

    Now I want pancakes.