Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Spotlight On: The Effin’ Chefn'!

Is “cute” the new kitchen “black”?

I admit it: I adore my Switchit Spatula more for its dapper looks than its ability to hold up under stress. My baby pink utensil (though available in a range of colors, from frost to avocado to huckleberry), made by the design hipsters at Chef’n, juts out of my makeshift kitchen-caddy like a newly sprung tulip. When I first bought it up for about $10 more than a year ago, it was something of an impulse buy, a rare occasion for someone who is an extreme comparison shopper. But by golly, look at it!

The scenario goes, as Alton Brown would say, thusly: You’re in the spatula and pancake-flipper section of your favorite kitchen store, when a jar of colorful Swithits catches your eye. The Switchit demands you pick it up for a closer examination. You notice its firm and rubbery self is a joy for the palm to behold, or in any case, “hold.” Its weight is assertive, but not overbearing. It’s sturdy, yet flexible at the wide tip. Slender, yet durable. It can withstand temperatures up to 650 degree Fahrenheit.

So naturally, as you fondle the Switchit seductively, suddenly remember that you are indeed in public, you come to believe that this spatula will somehow revolutionize your kitchen duties, or at least look really effin’ pretty in your caddy.

In all honesty, I do use my Switchit nearly every day, but occasionally with some amount of distress. It’s a bit sturdier than other spatulas, which is great for cooking—especially flipping crepes—but not nearly as useful as a flimsier one for scraping bowls, ribbed cans, or the curved inside edges of a blender. And hence, that is precisely how I managed to gouge a few tiny tears in the wide end of mine. I had been trying to coax out the last dribbles of a smoothie one morning and underestimated the width of the tapered end. Under the blender blade it went to become firmly stuck. The blade had a firm chomped-down grip on my girlie little Switchit, and for a good minute I didn’t think I would be able to rescue the poor thing. I yanked. It tore, but overall, the Switchit faired really well. The damage most closely resembles the work of a teething puppy, which means I’ve declared it officially still usable.

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