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Trusted gadgets we don't really need (but use anyway)


What is your favourite #firstworldproblem-solving gadget? (that’s not related to wine!)

In other words, a tool, device, app or other “solution” that has been specifically designed to make your life easier by addressing the kind of need that only exists in our consumerist society?

This has to be mine - the egg-boiler. I was a bit surprised when I got it, but it became a regular breakfast partner and when the element went, I felt somewhat bereft, and my breakfast eating suffered, so we’ve actually replaced it.


Ah! - another Andrew James device!

My candidate is my ice-cream maker.

I used to have one of those things where you put the base in the freezer, but I wore two of them out, so got this. A big thumbs up if you like making and eating the stuff. It makes up to 2 litres at a time, and after a quick clean-up you can go straight on to make another flavour. With the old system you had to wait till the base thawed before you could clean up, then wait at least 24hrs to freeze it down again.

(Just between ourselves, you don’t actually need anything other than a bowl and a freezer to make the stuff, but it’s very time-consuming that way, and the texture is not quite so good.)


The Lakeland catalogue my wife recieves every week, or so it seems, is full of items that will be at the back of the draw/cupboard almost as soon as they arrive.
All are deemed to be neccessities in the modern world for the modern woman, from hand held spiralisers, to ginger graters !, to cherry and olive pitters, who the hell could be bothered with that if you can buy them already pitted, to a gadget for squeezing tea bags, the list is endless.

I must admit to fascination for this catalogue and read it front to back every time it arrives looking for the latest instantly forgotten gadget, I know I should get a life…

How did our old mums survive without a Heston Blumenthal foamer and a canister of liquid nitrogen in the corner…


Ah, but the thread is about those gems amongst all that catalogue dross that you DO use.

Everything is a waste of space if you don’t use it. :slight_smile:

My egg-boiler, for example, gets used a LOT more than our food processor that is supposedly “more useful”

We could have a separate thread of the most egregious examples of waste-of-effort-and-resources gadgets, but that might be a rather longer topic


If the world is, indeed, ‘modern’, then surely these silly gadgets you mention would be aimed at the modern man too…


This thread reminds me of what is still one of the most snortingly funny columns I’ve ever read:

It’s from a (no longer) regular feature poking fun at kitchen gadgets - I recommend taking the time to read through a few of them during any moment when you feel a need for light relief.


We have one too @robert_mcintosh! My parents had one as my father loved a boiled egg. My mother on the other hand loathes eggs, so when Dad died I offered to give the egg boiler a good home knowing she would never use it. It is great!


Thanks for sharing this. Certainly got me chortling. And as for Mr Tea, least said the better🤭


Ohh very PC of you Inbar :wink:


Oh, a PC is a gadget I wouldn’t know how to operate! :wink:


Whenever I see a gadget like the ones mentioned and think “why would you bother when you can just…” I try and catch myself and think that maybe I’m not the target market; so for example @robert_mcintosh your egg boiler, yeah what’s wrong with a boiling in a pan but what if you haven’t got a hob? Or @cerberus with the tea bag squeezer, might be great for someone with less strength in their hands.


Go onto Youtube and look up the eggmaster review by ‘Ashens’.


Both your assumptions are correct, there is no problem with boiling an egg in a pan, no hob, how many people don’t have a hob, but you can be sure Lakeland provide for that eventuality regardless of demand.
And you are right about the tea bag strainer and other items that help those who struggle, my wife has osteo arthritis in the hands and elsewhere so these items do help, I was being flippant, though she can’t open tins or milk cartons, ridiculous, etc wine bottles cork, yet there is no easy tin opener apart from electric ones that only open some types, unless you know different


I’m guessing most of us use electric kettles and toasters, which are as redundant as stand-alone egg boilers in most kitchens.

We also use a breadmaker - not just for the occasional fancy loaf, but as our main source of bread.


I would really love something that peels eggs… my biggest frustration in the kitchen. Otherwise to be on topic I don’t think I have any gadgets that I use and don’t really need… plenty however that I don’t use and don’t really need.



It’s of course entirely possible to light a non-gas barbecue and get one going successfully without one of these contraptions, but they just take all the stress out of it. Marvellous things.


my father-in-law uses the same gadget, it is indispensable


I have a small hand cranked BBQ fan, a Cypriot mate uses a hairdryer lol :smiley:


Yes, hairdryer does the job.


Yup, another hairdryer user checking in.