What the Tech: These gadgets take the stress out of a home-cooked dinner with friends

These new gadgets will make an old-fashioned cocktail party a little easier.
Published: Nov. 22, 2021 at 4:15 PM HST|Updated: Nov. 22, 2021 at 4:23 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Have friends over for dinner and drinks? It can be stressful preparing a meal and something for later.

Home entertainment gadgets have become very popular in recent years and two gadgets, in particular, will make an old-fashioned cocktail party a little easier.

If you want to promise friends a restaurant-quality meal and professionally mixed cocktails, these two gadgets meet the bill. The Anova Sous Vide Precision Cooker and the Bartesian Cocktail maker are gadgets that bring a fancy restaurant into your home.

Sous Vide is simply cooking with water. No not boiling, cooking. The Anova Precision Cooker is a sous vide machine. Here’s how it works.

The Anova circulates the water at the temperature you choose. The app makes this easy to do beef, pork, chicken, or fish. I found a recipe for salmon which says the perfect temperature for a moist, tender, and flaky filet is 120-degrees and that it should cook at that temperature for 45 minutes.

The salmon or whatever you’re cooking goes into a sealed bag. Anova has a vacuum sealer but you can use any ziplock plastic bag with the air removed. Then simply place the bag into the water and it’ll cook at precisely that temperature. No overcooking.

You can even control the cooker away from home using the Anova app.

I’ve used it for salmon, chicken, and huge steaks that would be nearly impossible to get medium-rare throughout. Once time is up, the steak was completely cooked to medium-rare.

I tossed it onto a cast iron griddle for a sear and used a torch to sear the sides. The steaks, after 45 minutes at 120 were a perfect 120 degrees. I’ve also used the sous vide cooker to make amazing creme brulee! I’ve been using sous vide for over a year and everything has turned out just perfect. It couldn’t be easier to be a great cook and amaze your friends.

The Bartesian Custom Cocktail Maker uses flavor pods and your favorite spirits to mix cocktails from Margaritas to Mojitos to an Old Fashioned. You simply fill bottles with your favorite alcohol, add some water to a reservoir and then place a flavor pod in the Bartesian.

The pods are all labeled with their own barcode which is then read by the robot bartender. The barcode tells the Bartesian which alcohol bottle to draw from. There are places for bottles of Whiskey, Gin and Rum, Tequila, and Vodka. All you have to do is enter how strong you want your cocktail or if you prefer a mocktail with no alcohol.

The Bartesian mixes the drink perfectly every time.

There is a similar product on the market from Keurig called “Drinkworks”. The key difference between the two cocktail makers is that the pods for Drinkworks contain alcohol whereas the Bartesian pods only contain bitters, citrus, and other flavor ingredients.

Since you cannot purchase alcohol online from retailers such as Amazon, Target, and Best Buy, you need to visit a liquor store to buy Drinkworks pods.

Bartesian cocktail pods can be purchased online at most major retailer websites and I’ve seen them sell a packet of 6 pods for $15. The Bartesian itself is around $350 but has been on sale for around $300 leading up to the holidays.

If you’re planning on hosting family and friends during the holidays and serving dinner and drinks, these two gadgets make home entertaining a lot easier for the hosts.

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