"Self-sufficiency does not mean 'going back' to the acceptance of a lower standard of living. On the contrary, it is the striving for a higher standard of living, for food that is organically grown and good, for the good life in pleasant surroundings... and for the satisfaction that comes from doing difficult and intricate jobs well and successfully." John Seymour ~ Self Sufficiency 2003

Monday, 8 November 2010

Kitchen implements

How do you prepare your food?

Do you have the latest gadgets, with all their bling and razzmatazz? Do you use electric or manual implements in your kitchen?

I thought I'd share with you what I use:

My baby pestle and mortar does just what I need it too.

My single blade Mezzaluna - perfect for chopping fresh herbs from my garden.
My handy manual processor does just what I need...

and all the blades which came with my processor fit into the back of the unit for easy storage

The sands of time cooks MKids boiled egg perfectly, without the need of a wind up mechanism nor batteries.

An antique genuine ravioli maker - making ravioli is an absolute breeze
And then to reward myself for not using any power in the preparation of our meal, RMan gets a cup of (minimal power) filter coffee...

with beans ground with a coffee grinder...

My antique coffee grinder

and... I get a cup of Rooibos tea :-)

A perfect one cup teapot with strainer - who needs tea bags?

So I ask you - who need power guzzling kitchen helpers to make delicious food?  My only regret is that I was unable to find all my plastic items in wood - but I console myself with the fact that at least I'm not using any power when I need their help in my kitchen.

What implements do you have in your kitchen which are "off the grid"?  I would love to see a photo of them - you can e-mail me at: dani at ecofootprint dot co dot za.  If you like I will do another post to show them off for you...?  :-)


  1. I really like your kitchen implements, we just got around to purchasing our first pestle and mortar and have been making good use of it. I love your Mezzaluna and inverted cutting board, I have never seen anything like that before.

  2. Dani, I love all of your wonderful no power gadgets! Thank you for posting these great photos because I'm just now hunting things to stock my new off grid kitchen with and these photos will help so much.

  3. Very inspiring post. I hadnt really put much thought into this but now that I do...gasp...almost everything is electric. Blender. Pizza Oven. Bread machine. Coffee Grinder. Coffee Machine. So the learning continues! Thanks for inspiring me yet again.

  4. Mr H - couldn't be without my Mezzaluna - invaluble for chopping herbs finely :-)

    Ezrablue - glad to have been of assistance - that is the purpose of this blog :-)

    Deb - Loved the gasp LOL - finding a way of doing what needs to be done without having to use electricity, returns the power to your hands and allows you to give more love to what you do - gives you more peace and quiet, and time to clear you head.

  5. There a few gadgets in there that I couldn't do without as well... Add my rolling pin, I'd be lost without it!

  6. LOL cityhippyfarmgirl of course - my rolling pin is on the list too, as well as my manual tin opener...

  7. I really love this post. My giant (electric-sucking two-burner) commercial coffee maker is biting the dust, so I'm digging my French press out of the back of the pantry... today! I love-love-love my late mom's vintage turquoise bakelite hand mixer. I use it at The Home Place. Photo to follow soon. Thanks for the inspiration.

  8. Ginger - I love it when I remind someone of a non-electric gadget they have, which will work as well (if not better) than their power hungry one. Would real love to see a pic! :-)

  9. I have many off-the-grid gadgets since I am careful with how much power we use generating it ourself. I love your post and think I will do one soon about my gadgets. I especially like my pyramid toaster which I just had to replace after 11 years of use. The new one is supposed to be delivered today.

    Thanks for visiting my blog and your comment! It did show up and I don't know why I have that problem now and then with the comments.

  10. Kathleen - Welcome to my blog and thanks for your kind comments.

    I would love to see your pyramid toaster :-)

  11. Dani, I posted a photo of the pyramid toaster on my blog. I also posted a link back to this post of your's from my blog.

  12. Very cool, Kathleen. Thanks for sharing it :-)

  13. Well .. now with my big old electric grain mill sitting on my counter (LOL) let me think: I have a stove top percolator, manual can opener, mezzaluna (from Alasak:), hum ... rolling pin, that's the bulk of it. I do prefer chopping veggies by hand .. never use the food processor .. too much work cleaning. I just started roasting our own coffee and am looking for a coffee mill similar to yours.

  14. Hmmm - home roasted coffee beans - RMan would love that :-)

  15. For canning, I couldn't make do without my Sqeezo Strainer. It's not inexpensive, but I've found no faster way to process fruits. Shared picking and processing time with John Wells last year during the Prickly Pear harvest. Made jelly from the juice without further straining. I've been using it for tomatoes for over 20 years. No peeling needed (though we singed the prickly pear tunas to remove the glochids which are tiny hair-like spines on the cactus fruit).


  16. Julianne - they Sqeezo strainer sounds brilliant - thanks.

    I am a big fan of JW - do you live nearby?

    Prickly pears - we get them here too - and planting them on the farm would be perfect.

  17. My place is 4 miles east of JW's Field Lab. You may have seen me on his blog as beekeeper and/or piano tuner; both of which are basically unfinished projects for me.

    I've been working as a chemistry professor about 4 hours away and spending summers, breaks and many weekends developing a place to stay. My place is on the electric grid, so I find myself only piddling with solar, LED's and such.

    I am finally in process of moving to be here full time. Move should be complete by 1st of July. Can't wait to be done with the extensive driving and get myself planted in one place. This fall, I'll have my first real garden in 5 years. (Two tomato plants, two pepper plants and 2 squash plants, planted in tires along with endless jars of sprouts over the past 5 years don't seem to count as a garden.)

  18. Julianne - cool - thanks for letting me know your location _ I have JW placed on Google Maps, now I can find you too :-)

    Do youself a favour and get JW to assist you with going off grid (well, one favour (your showing JW how to make cactus juice) derserves another (JW helping you with solar info) ).

    Hurry up and escape - there is nothing like the feeling! Any chance you'll be awakening your blog when you move? Would love to follow your progress :-)

    Please let me know how your squash plants work out - tomatoes and peppers - no problem - squash - nada!


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