>> October 13, 2010 – gadgets
Thermometers are an invaluable kitchen tool for scientific chefs. They lend preciseness to what would otherwise be intangible kitchen lore. One of the coolest and nerdiest types of thermometers you can get is an infrared thermometer gun.
This gadget is great for getting surface temperatures, like checking the temperature of your pans or oven. It tells you if a pan is hot enough to create a nice sear, or if your oven is calibrated wrong. It will also let you know if a dish is too hot to touch (this varies and can be anywhere from 110 degrees Fahrenheit for those with delicate hands to 120, aka burning temperature, for those with tough skin).
It's also great because it's instant. You just point and shoot and the temperature reading shows up on the digital display. It even updates in real time if you keep the trigger pressed. And for my Canadian friends, it also has a toggle for changing between Celsius and Fahrenheit.
One cautionary note though, this really is just for surface temperatures, so it's not good for things like measuring the internal temperature of meats to see if they're cooked well enough (for that, you'll need to get a probe thermometer, another handy gadget).
Oh, and did I mention that it has a LASER? Yes, you get to point and shoot a laser gun, all in the name of good cooking. Makes you feel pretty bad-ass yet dorky all at the same time.
And of course this has a ton of great practical applications outside of the kitchen, like checking what temperature your MacBook is really at when it feels like it's burning your wrists, seeing how hot your light bulbs are, checking for drafts by your windows … but I had you at laser, right?
If you're intrigued enough to buy one for yourself, I'm dipping my toe into blog monetization by trying out Amazon's referral program. So you can follow this link and I might make some spare change (actually I have no idea how much I'd make, but I'll let you know if you're curious): infrared thermometer gun. I bought this one because it had the highest and most ratings and thus far I'm a happy customer.