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Nov 30, 2010 08:33 AM

Chef Basket?

Okay, so I guess I'm susceptible to the lure of the infomercials. I watched a commercial for this Chef Basket, and thought it might actually be convenient for some kitchen tasks. Any owners out there?

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  1. Saw it also, but I'm not an owner. I had these questions: How big is it? The site, nor the ad, doesn't mention capacity, although it appears to hold possibly a dozen eggs, and do you have a pot/pots that it would fit in for the handles to rest on the outer rim? How sturdy it it? Why does the handle area stay cool, it's metal? It is due to the handle being located fairly far from the heat source? I think it's a bit more pricy than it's worth, including shipping, but it could definitely have a few uses around the kitchen, if you don't already own a colander, pasta strainer, rigid steamer basket, or a few wire mesh strainers, as I do. I have a feeling that if I bought one it would end up as a fruit basket on my counter.

    1. One thing I've learned from a small number of impulse buys is that items bought off infomercials are usually very poor quality. Not much to this mesh basket. Actually a neat idea. I suspect it won't last too long. Oh but you get two for the price of one. Oh and the S & H is usually too high so the item ends up costing more than you thought. Proceed with caution

      1. All right, I'm taking one for the team. I ordered one, along with the Just For This Limited Time Offer of the "free extra basket and the knife", and of course I went for the upgrade to the heavy duty stainless, sap that I am. So, it came out to $26.96 including S&H. I'll report back after using it a few times.

        1. Well,

          1) As a colander, I don't trust it... its one thing to rinse off a bunch of fingerling potatoes or pieces of rigatoni. Show me it can cook small penne, orzo, or some other pasta that's teeny.

          2) As a deep fryer, does anybody really "fry" a basket full of chicken in one batch? To be honest, I just have a large mesh scoop and a spider that I use to fish stuff out for deep frying. You don't just "shake off'" the grease - you need to throw the things onto a drying rig for a short bit to pull off more grease.

          They don't even mention deep frying battered items - you don't just "drop 'em in" - you slowly set them into the oil so the batter doesn't get stripped off..

          Polder makes a nice "Cook's Colander" that I think might be a better buy...
          The video shows it takes the place of among other things a Salad Spinner - really? What am I a supposed to do, stand in the middle of a kitchen and spin the thing around like a helicopter.

          Cheap toy? Perhaps.. but I don't think it replaces much in my kitchen..

          1. My main question - what keeps the handle in the open position while it's on a pot - basically what's to keep the basket from collapsing into the water/oil while in use? Also seems too pricey for a cheap wire basket.

            Also, I refuse on principle to buy any product whose commercial features some cretin (who is supposed to represent me, the consumer) failing to boil water for pasta (or some other stupid-easy task) without making a mess of it and breaking into sobs.