I looked at the calendar last week and thought, “How can it possibly have been a year already since I started this little project?”
But come August 1st, I’ll be celebrating RKP’s first anniversary, and I’m here to tell you, I’m thankful for this website. And for all of you. 🙂 I constantly get to hear from interesting people all over the world, and it’s an inspiration to see the recipe archives grow, knowing all of these recipes are now battle plans in the eating-cheaply arsenal!
In keeping with this celebratory post, I’m announcing another kitchen giveaway! That’s right–from now through Friday (the 30th), you can enter to win your very own Misto Gourmet Olive Oil Sprayer.
And if I’m giving one away, I may as well review one myself! (Many thanks to Lisa at Lifetime Brands for providing The Red Kitchen with these cool freebie gadgets, by the way!) Here goes:
The Misto Gourmet Oil Bottle Sprayer from Lifetime Brands is a handy little doodad designed to lighten up your cooking and eating by reducing the amount of oil used in recipes and snacks into a fine spray mist, coating your food more evenly and thereby eliminating the need to “dip” or “pour” oil on items that don’t really need that much grease. And starting at $9.99, you can’t beat the price when you think about all of the empty spray cans of PAM you’ve probably thrown away. (See? Your waist will love you, and now the environment will, too!)
I’ve been trying to center more of my recipes these days around healthier options, so I decided to try it out on some lean steaks. For kicks and giggles, I also replaced buttered corn with grilled corn on the cob misted with olive oil–but I didn’t even get to photograph any of the vegetables before they were gobbled up! Honestly, I’m through smothering corn in butter, margarine, Parkay spread, or anything else thick and yellow! The olive oil, with a shake or two of salt, was just right–not too greasy, not too dry, not too bland–frankly, it was perfect.
Getting back to the steaks, I purchased some ultra-lean but ultra-tough flank steaks on manager’s special at my local meat counter. Normally, I would soak/marinate the tough steaks during the day before firing up the grill at night. This time, I decided to see how a little bit of misting would speed up the process.
One steak was scored with a knife and then brushed with about a Tablespoon (= 3 teaspoons) of olive oil to make sure I didn’t miss any nooks or crannies.
The other steak was scored identically, but oiled using only the Misto. (I might have used 1/2 teaspoon, tops, on the entire steak.) The sprayer, which you fill halfway with liquid and then “pump” about ten times before pressing the spray nozzle, really allowed me to get into the scored sections and marinate the center of the tough steak without the whole thing dripping with oil or making a mess.
I then sprinkled the two steaks equally with my usual beef flavorings–onion powder, salt, pepper and paprika–and set them both out there on the heated barbecue grill.
About 13-15 minutes later, I scooped them up, brought them in, sliced them up, and definitely knew which one I wanted to claim as mine!
The steak that had been brushed with oil was still dripping with grease. Two of the corners had also hardened into tough little points.
The steak that had been Misto-sprayed was juicy (but not greasy), evenly cooked (no hardened edges), and more easily sliced as a result. Just look and see for yourself:
See how pasty the outside of the first steak looks? No matter how hard I attacked the scorings with a thick basting brush, I couldn’t seem to get the oil to penetrate the outside of the raw meat. When I sprayed the second steak, all I had to do was press the meat away from each incision using the knife, and then point the nozzle of the spray bottle downward into the score marks.
As if that weren’t enough proof, I of course followed with a taste-test of each steak. While both admittedly would have benefited from being marinated all day, the brushed-oil steak was much tougher and chewier than I’d expected versus the sprayed steak.
To be honest, it was actually my goal with this experiment just to find out if the sprayed steak would be AS tender as the brushed steak. I wanted to find out if my tastes would suffer by using less oil in preparation. Turns out, my tastes were suffering BEFORE I switched to the Misto. That 1/2 teaspoon of olive oil in mist form was able to get into places a whole Tablespoon of oil could never be brushed into.
I look forward in the coming weeks to trying out other new ways of using the Misto to reduce my daily fat/grease/oil intake. But I’m going to need your help, which is where the contest comes in.
To enter to win your very own Misto Gourmet Brushed Aluminum Oil Bottle Sprayer, leave a comment on this post telling me what recipe you’d most like to reduce the fat in using a Misto. One entry per person, please. Contest ends at 12:00 pm (noon) CST on Friday, July 30th. Winner will be announced Friday afternoon.
P.S.–You can also order an engraved, personalized Misto sprayer starting at only $14.99–treat all the cooks in your life to a cool gadget and healthier cooking!