Breakfast, a daily ritual for many people, seems to be more inviting on crisp, cool autumn mornings. For those who can't skip this energizing meal, there's nothing more convenient than being equipped with the proper kitchen gear to whip up a good starter course.
There is the blender for making a healthful banana shake if you opt for breakfast on the go. Or you may choose an electric egg poacher, a Belgian waffle maker, a juicer. Here are some interesting new appliances to fill in the blanks or replace tired ones; the ideas could entice breakfast fasters to pick up the morning habit.
Next to working on routine personal hygiene and listening to the radio, drinking coffee tied with making the bed (55%) in the list of top 10 morning rituals of men and women in the United States. (Ranking behind were making breakfast, kissing one's spouse or partner, reading the newspaper, watching television, exercise and last, ironing clothes.) These insights were discovered in a recent national survey--Morning Habits of America--commissioned by Robert Krups, North America.
A hot choice over all other breakfast items (including fruit juice) was coffee, with women out numbering men in this drinking habit. Krups general manager, Michael Kramm suggests a brand-new coffee maker that can be programmed in advance for wake-up coffee. "Waking up to the rich aroma of coffee is certainly a more pleasant eye-opener than the sound of an alarm."
Called Coffee Time Plus ($130 for the 10-cup and $140 for the 12-cup), the sleek-looking unit features two brewing cycles--one that makes one to three cups and another for four cups or more. It is designed with an easy to use, unobtrusive computer control pad with four indicator lights. Krups offers the unit in white or glossy black.
Krups Coffee Time Plus is available at Robinson's.
Many people can't live by plain bread alone; the bread has to be toasted, of course. And toast lovers can't live without a good pop-up toaster, which they prefer over toaster ovens for speed, proper crisping and browning. If price is no object, and with design satisfaction and long wear in mind, the serious toast cook should check into the Waring Professional Toaster ($230 for two-slice model and $300 for four-slice model).
Discovered in Buckingham Palace, London's House of Parliament and the Ritz Hotel, the commercial-grade toaster's round contours give it a nostalgic Art Deco look. It's constructed with heavy-duty elements in gleaming stainless steel construction with black trim. What's special about this sturdy toaster is its keep-warm cycle that's maintained up to 10 minutes until the pop-up knob is pressed down.
Other advantages include an automatic timing switch, a control for toasting fewer bread slices and a removable crumb tray. The four-slice toaster accommodates thick and thin breads. The product carries a full one-year warranty. For additional information, contact Waring Products Division, Route 44, New Hartford, Conn. 06057, (203) 379-0731.
The Waring Professional Toaster is available at Bullock's and at Williams-Sonoma (where it is called Dualit).
Wide slots, cool touch have become the buzzwords associated with today's pop-up toasters. The appeal of the larger slots comes from accepting a greater variety of breads and pastries--muffins, bagels and rolls. Exterior finishes that stay cool prevent accidental burns. A newcomer to this crowded field is Black & Decker's 2-Slice Toaster, Model T215 ($24.98). Available in light almond, it features a variable toast color selector, a sensor control for correct toasting doneness and a swing-open crumb tray. The unit is backed by a full two-year warranty.
The Black & Decker Wide-Slot, Cool-Touch 2-Slice Toaster is available at Virgil's Hardware (Glendale), The Broadway, Fedco and Adray's.
Remember how frustrating it is to get burned toast as the toaster becomes overheated as you toast more slices? One company's approach with its newly introduced Rowenta Electronic Toasters ($35 for compact Model TA-03 and $45 for 4-slice Model TA-04) is a microchip technology that eliminates the need to reset the toaster during repeated use for consistent browning.
Another toaster going back in time with its '50s shape, Rowenta's design is available in white with shiny chrome details or pure black. Every unit offers large knobs for easy control, flushed pop-up lever, beveled toast slots and hinged crumb tray. The appliance carries a three-year warranty.
The Rowenta Electronic Toasters are available at Bullock's.
And then there's fruit juice, the morning brightener--but freshly squeezed please. Tefal Appliances gives you two options with its new Juice Master ($89.99)--a juice extractor as well as a citrus juicer. For optimum extraction, the compact white appliance spins fruits and vegetables at a speed of 11,500 revolutions per minute through a special cutting screen and filter. The unit turns into a citrus juicer by replacing the extractor with a reamer attachment, which automatically slows down the speed for automatic squeezing of the fruit. Both extracted and squeezed juice flow through a side spout directly into a glass.
Other features consist of a safety lock that makes the unit inoperable until its lid and blades are in position, plus rubber feet to stop the appliance from "walking away" while working.
The Tefal Juice Master is available at Bullock's, Jordano's (Santa Barbara) and selected Robinson's stores.