Shut Up and Take My Money is a weekly feature about coveting the coolest, if not the most practical, gadgets and designs on the web--the kind that make you throw caution to the wind and reach for your wallet before that pesky self-control can kick in.
In the wake of Thanksgiving cooking and gorging, many of you may not want to spend eight consecutive hours in the kitchen ever again. But for better or worse, the season of feeding bottomless relatives is just beginning. Thankfully, these cute and clever kitchen aids will make passing time in front of the stove top much more enjoyable.1. State-Skillets
Combining love of food, family and country, Alisa Toninato of FeLion Studios has created the most American cookware possible. Her cast-iron map of the continental United States splits into 48 geographically accurate and functioning state pans. Accumulating all 550 pounds of kitchen patriotism is prohibitively pricey, but fortunately Toninato sells and ships each state individually. The Evergreen State is also comparatively cheaper to two-handled giants like California ($1,500) and Texas ($2,500). For $500, you can be cooking bacon and eggs with Washingtonian curves.
Reaching for a knife block with personality is much better than rummaging in a drawer full of pointy dangers. The arrangement of this Five Finger Fillet Steak Set doubles as a PSA about kitchen safety and an eye-catching decoration. Plus, any unwelcome cooks can be shooed away with an exaggerated reinstatement of a steak knife into its center-of-a-splayed-hand slot. The set, in different colors, is available for $49.99.
For those wanting to splurge, this Deglon Knife Set is both fine art and stainless steel luxury. The four instruments--a paring, utility, chef and slicer knife--seamlessly fit into one another, like puzzle pieces. The ingenious interplay of handle and blade will set you back $753.46, though.
3. Cheat-Sheet Apron
This apron is a must for those without much kitchen know-how. The bottom is printed with all sorts of useful information: measurement conversion tables, freezing times, defrosting guides, a cooking glossary and more. No more running to your laptop to Google the number of cups in a gallon while marinara sauce solidifies on your fingers. Just lift the skirt of the apron and absorb gastronomic wisdom without ever leaving the kitchen. The cotton essential is just $24.99.
If patriotic pans, cutting-edge knives and a guiding apron aren't enough to inspire cooking finesse, you can still feel high-tech after ordering a pizza. The Scissors/Spatula gadget lets any salivating foodie speed up the pizza sharing process by cutting the pie and serving the slice simultaneously. The no mess tool should be back in stock for $11.99 soon.
5. Dumbbell Cutlery
When dinner is finally ready, the guests can scarf down the meal guilt-free with the help of these Eat Fit Utensils. The fork and knife are attached to one pound dumbbells, so chewing meatloaf turns into an upper body workout. The desert spoon weighs two pounds to counteract the sugary goop you'll be eating with it. Keep the holiday pounds at bay for $145.