baskin robbins, eat your heart out

Ever since my friend Anne got us an ice cream machine (!!!!), we’ve gone kind of, well, overboard — not only making but also of course consuming many, many batches, including:

  • Jasmine tea with chocolate slivers
  • Brown sugar cinnamon
  • Spicy chocolate
  • Fresh mint with Oreos


(Any suggestions for future ice creamery are very welcome.)

The ice cream maker is but one of many kitchen upgrades we hope to make before our March 2011 departure for Benin. You’d think moving to the developing world would require downsizing technologically, but I’ve been assured that our house will be equipped to handle anything, assuming of course we invest in the appropriate converters. Bread machine? No problem. Pasta maker? Sure. Deep fryer? Why not.

We’ve already got most of the basics (except for a food processor — that’s probably next up), but what other kitchen gadgets would you suggest? The more bizarre (i.e. the more popular they would make us at potlucks), the xenical or orlistat

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9 Responses to baskin robbins, eat your heart out

  1. Anne says:

    A pizza stone might be worth while

  2. Andy says:

    Pizza stone – perfect. Thanks Anne!

  3. EH says:

    I love my Breville Juicer.

  4. rich kolker says:

    Absolutely a pizza stone. If you want to grill, a grill, although I get by with a big George Foreman. Here’s the thing – see how much power each draws so you don’t make the mistake I did and overdraw on a transformer which couldn’t handle it. Kitchen appliances, particularly with heating elements, draw more watts than you think! If you’re going to make, say, pizza dough, a serious mixer with dough hooks isn’t a bad idea (I almost burn out my hand mixer every time I make donuts).

    And a big transformer. For kitchen appliances, you don’t need to worry about a power conditioner.

  5. If you’re coffee drinkers, bring an espresso machine. Good coffee is hit and miss in Cotonou. Rich is dead on with the transformer. If you don’t bring one, you can buy one here, but it’ll be 2x more expensive and 1/2 as reliable.

  6. Don says:

    I have 2 words for you – George Foreman!!!

  7. Randee says:

    Try making sorbet! It’s actually easier than ice cream and way delicious!

  8. eve says:

    I’m curious about these recommendations of bringing transformers…
    I was under the impression that we are supplied with two decent ones. Anyone know if that’s true? Or are they crummy ones that just fizzle?
    Oh! Agree with the sorbet comment! We made grapefruit this past winter and it was OUTstanding. We want to try some using fresh herbs next… peach mint? strawberry basil…? lime cilantro?

  9. rich kolker says:

    There’s nothing wrong with the ones they provide, but there aren’t enough and they max out (at least here) at 1000 watts. If you have a 1200 watt appliance, you’re on your own.

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