Auckland City Harbour News - - YOUR PAPER, YOUR PLACE -

Be­ware the al­lure of bet­ter Buy less, buy qual­ity

Get your bal­ance right

you went in.

Some of the items in the cat­a­logue were so spe­cific, they were funny.

Bear claws ($39.95): Imag­ine knuckle-dusters in the shape of plas­tic bear claws, so fear­some I sus­pect you’d be ar­rested if caught wear­ing them in the street. ‘‘Per­fect for shred­ding meat, and pulling pork’’, the cat­a­logue says.

Onion gog­gles ($16.95): Brightly-coloured rub­ber sealed eye wear. ‘‘No more tears when slic­ing onions’’.

Herb scis­sors: ($19.95): Five­bladed scis­sors to cut fresh herbs into lit­tle bits with one fifth of the snip­ping ef­fort.

A real chain-mail coat for your chicken called a ‘‘Roast­cosy’’ ($154.95). Helps your chicken roast bet­ter, and look mas­sively cool.

I have no doubt each item does its job, but it is ex­pense to achieve a modest amount of bet­ter­ment.

Some ‘‘bet­ter’’ in ev­ery life is clearly good, but there’s a kitchen bet­ter­ment ma­nia go­ing on, and sin­gle-use items seem to me to be ex­em­plars of the trend.

I could serve bet­ter cof­fee, if I bought a cof­fee ma­chine. I could make toasted cheese sand­wiches more eas­ily, if I bought that press.

I could juice a lemon faster with that gad­get. I could do four pieces of toast at one go, if I up­graded my toaster. My boiled eggs would be per­fec­tion with that egg-cooker.

For me, small in­cre­ments of bet­ter­ment shouldn’t get in the way of the re­ally big kinds of bet­ter in life, like clear­ing debts and hav­ing money in the bank. Here’s my rule of thumb.

If your kitchen is TV-ready qual­ity, your cof­fee would win barista awards, and your main


Ev­ery­one’s aim­ing to be A Master chef these days.

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