Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy New Year Four! Playing with Kitchen Toys

I am finding it hard to believe that I have completed three years of blogging.  When I first started I was skeptical that I could fulfill even one year, and yet here it is with over 13,300 page views from all over the world and this, the 87th post.  My blog is linked into Top Food Blogs at myTaste.com and into Tasty Query.  Each post goes on a Pinterest board, too.  All of these have helped make my fun more visible.  It would not have happened at all without my daughter's encouragement and computer support.  Thanks, Girlie!

One major change in my cooking is that my confidence level for playing with recipes or just creating my own dishes has risen considerably.  I have read enough and practiced enough that I have ideas and concepts that can guide me through judging when a flavor seems "right" and what sorts of items to combine for a tasty meal.  Not everything I try works out but my successes far outnumber the failures.  I have a wonderful sense of freedom in the kitchen.

On this, my first posting for a new year, I like to set some goals.  This year has two:  to continue to explore historical or traditional recipes from a variety of countries, hopefully with a greater emphasis in using vegetables; and to explore some old kitchen gadgets to see how they are used.  With those in mind, I present to you a gadget that has been in my possession for years, mostly in storage, and I had no idea what it was designed for.


Lid on.
Lid off.
It is made of metal, in shiny chrome, has metal feet on the bottom, a flat cooking surface in the center, a well around that, a handle, a lid, and a flange on the raised rim.  Every time I saw it I wondered about its use.

I decided to figure it out.  My major clue was the manufacturer's stamp on the bottom:

The manufacturer was the Everedy Company, Frederick, Maryland, USA
It is called the Bacon-Egger, Jr., and a quick look around the 'net showed me that they were for sale in 1956: see this ad in the Spokane Daily Chronicle.  I think I inherited it from my grandparents, so this time period seems reasonable.

The description in the ad says, "Fries bacon, keeps it hot till eggs are done."  Ah ha!  Now I know what to do!

It is used on the stove top and first I cook the bacon.

Four half pieces fit comfortably on it.
The lid is used to keep the bacon flat and the well catches the grease.

The holes in the lid let out steam.
I was ambitious and cooking for three people, so I tried several batches of bacon.  Once cooked, the bacon went on the flange where it stayed warm without cooking and drained extra grease.


The problem was the well filled with grease and I couldn't drain it without removing the pieces from the side.  That means the cooking area flooded, more steam came through the holes making it too hot to hold the knob, and little geysers of hot grease erupted from the lid edges.

My conclusion is that this was designed to cook enough bacon for one to two people with built-in portion control!

I tried cooking one egg in the grease flood but didn't really like how it turned out.  I cooked it over-easy and thought it was too coated in bacon fat.
Room for two!
So I removed the bacon to a plate, drained off the excess grease, returned the bacon to the flange, and cooked a second egg.  It was much better.  Yes, the bacon stayed warm.

The Verdict

Overall it worked well. Success!  The only other issue I found was that it had two "hot spots" on the cooking surface which tended to cook items on them faster than the rest of the surface.  You can see some scorching to the right and left of the egg in the picture above.  I just had to be aware of them and make sure to move the food items around while cooking.

It was easy to clean and easy to drain off the excess bacon fat.

If you are a bacon and eggs fan, this is a handy gadget to have.  I saw them for sale on eBay for about $5.  I also think it might be a good pan for cooking crepes, but I'm not sure if the well will be a help or a hindrance.

I looked up the Everedy Company on the history of Fredrick website and found this description:
The Everedy Company was founded as the Everedy Bottle Capper Company in May of 1920. It began with a factory building on East Street in 1922, producing a range of metal items for domestic use, including “Speedy-clean chrome cooling utensils, Everedy Door Hardware, Everedy Home Bottling Equipment, Evercraft Modern Gift Merchandise.” This larger complex was completed in 1942 and connected the East Street buildings to the new warehouses on E Church Street Extended. The total complex had nearly doubled in size and took advantage of this space by securing numerous World War II manufacturing contracts.  After the war the Everedy Company produced “Anti-Tank Mines, navy Anti-submarine floats, grenades, grenade adapters, rocket parts, bomb parts.”
Remnants of the company's location still exist:
The buildings of Everedy Square were once the home of the Everedy Company, where the Everedy Bottle Capper was invented and manufactured. The product met with national success following the enactment of Prohibition. Prospering for 50 years, The Everedy Company ultimately produced a line of kitchenware that is still used in many households today.
(Citation:  Everedy Square)

I even found a legal description of Everedy's wares on Trademarkia, showing the trademark was first in use in 1936.
METAL HOLLOW WARE FOR USE ON THE TOP OF STOVES-NAMELY, FRYING PANS, SKILLETS, AND COOKING PANS [ COMPRISING A CENTRAL FRYER PORTION SURROUNDED BY AN ANNULAR INCLINED LEDGE PORTION HAVING UP-STRUCK PROJECTIONS THEREON FOR SUPPORTING AND MAINTAINING STRIPS OF BACON THEREON WHILE EGGS ARE BEING FRIED IN THE CENTRAL PORTION, WHERE THE ANNULAR PORTION AND THE CENTRAL PORTION ARE CONNECTED BY AN ANNULAR GREASE-RECEIVING TROUGH AND WHERE THE TROUGH HAS SUPPORTING FEET THEREUNDER FOR MOUNTING THE METAL




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