May 17, 2012
Raise your hand if you love French fries!
I sure do (even though sometimes I wished I didn't)!
What about chicken wings?
I think my husband could live on them...well wings, lobster and good beer anyway!
Do you sometimes wish you had an extra pair of hands?
What if I told you that there was a kitchen gadget that could give you all of the above AND with just 1 tablespoon of oil, allow you to be hands free while it was going on and create very little mess?
Have you ever heard of an Actifry?
I had not until a few weeks ago. Actifry has been available in Europe for a couple of years and is just now coming to the US.
I was lucky enough to be contacted to try one out and now I get to share my thoughts with you (as well as give one away!!)!
I have to admit I was very skeptical when I heard about what the Actifry, which is made my T-fal, could do. So I put it through a number of tests.
First up chicken wings...right off the bat I just had to see what the Actifry could do with chicken wings. I rarely make wings at home due to #1 - not wanting to deep fry them (after all they are not that healthy) and #2 - making them in the oven causes quite the mess for me.
So I threw about a 18 seasoned pieces of chicken wing segments into the Actifry, drizzled them with just 1 TBS of oil as instructed, set the timer for 25 minutes and peeked through the see-through lid. Very slowly, the "arm" (which to me looks like the tail of a very small dragon) began to move around pushing the wings in a circle. I watched for a bit, and then I walked away and went to catch up on a TV show I am fond of that I had missed. Yeah me!!
I went back halfway through, popped open the lid, stirred the wings around then went back to putting my feet up. Soon I heard the timer and I was floored with the results. The Actifry really did cook the wings well!! My 7 year old daughter had one of her BFF's over that day after school was let out early for a well-deserved half a day and those two gobbled every one of those wings up...just look at what was left. They were picked clean lol!!
Prior to this my daughter had never had a chicken wing...now she is asking for more. Her girlfriend Sophia loved them as well.
Those two ate them so fast that the sauce I had made to make them Asian style wings was sitting on the stove...all alone.
SO, I ran out to get more wings and to do it again! They were finished just in time for my husband as he walked in the door from work and I have to say as a man who LOVES and I mean LOVES chicken wings (especially Cajun wings) he was floored!
Test 1 passed with flying colors...TWICE!
The next morning I saw the granola recipe in the recipe book that accompanies the Actifry and I just had to give it a try...again I was amazed! In 8 minutes I had a delicious, crunchy, golden brown granola, made with just a bit of oil.
That day, I was headed out to an evening event...as I was running out the door to tend to a few errands, my husband came in early from work to do some online testing at home. He had not eaten lunch and said to me "do you think that thing can make frozen pierogi's?" I was like "I have no idea...let's try it". So I threw in 2 frozen pierogi, set the timer for 7 minutes just to see what would happen...and it worked. My husband then threw in a dozen more, turned it on, set the timer and out the door I went.
When I came home I asked him how they were and he was raving about them.
Listen...this is a man who in his youth would cook up pierogi late at night after him and his buddies would come in from the bar. First they would deep fry them, THEN they would PAN FRY THEM IN BUTTER!! I swear...I have no idea how those knuckleheads survived eating like that! SO if my husband said they were good, they must have been good...and with less than a TBS of oil! T-Fal may have just given my husband an extra year to live!!
Next, I cooked up hot sausage which I cut into chunks and it cooked up beautifully! I never even so much as stirred them...whoohoo!!
They last thing I made before writing this was the fries. I made up a batch, just like the recipe booklet said and they were wonderful! So much so that my kids gobbled them right up, and immediately asked if I could make more. So I quickly wiped the pan with a paper towel and got down to it....WHY? Because it is SO easy with the Actifry and because I LOVE them!!
My daughter, 7, said "can I make them?" I thought sure...why not. So she took over, and she quickly helped me finish cutting the potatoes, rinsed them, dried them, tossed them with oil, placed them in the Actifry, shut the lid, turned it on and set the timer!
Then waited for "her fries" to be done! They were perfect and my family ate every one!
So my findings are this:
This machine delivered what was promised! It shocked me for sure! Where I see this being most useful in my life is the nights when my husband and I may be eating something that my kids either don't want to eat or can't eat (due to food allergies). I see my Actifry as another pair of hands in my kitchen - working on its own to make something while I am busy with something else. I also see this as a great help in making lunches for my kids while we are around the pool this summer. Like I said it’s another pair of hands for me. The “arm” design inside the machine is brilliant!
I think this could be a bachelor's best friend as well as tremendous help to single dads (or moms) that don't cook much as well as a great and I mean great gift to kids either heading off to college or away at college. It doesn't take up much space and it can make everything from granola to chili! It cleans SO easily...really! Why would they want microwave food when they can easily whip up something easy and delish in an Actifry?
The only con I can say is that it is a little on the loud side, but by the middle of the second time I used it, I didn't hear it anymore. As far as the price goes…look at the Actifry site…see what it makes well and what other are using it for. If this is something you can see yourself using a few times a week, then it is absolutely worth it!
Now for some exciting news!!! Tomorrow I will have a giveaway up and the prize will be...You guessed it a brand new Actifry for one of you!!! How cool is that!!
Click here to learn more about Actifry.
Click here to see some of what owners of Actifry are cooking up! They even have a Pinterest page and a Facebook page!
I also have some shots of my Actifry in action on Instagram (as Souffle Bombay) here
See you tomorrow!
Disclosure: I was given an Actifry to try out as well as one to give away to one of my readers. The opinions expressed in this post were exactly what I thought of the product after using multiple times over the course of a week. I chose to use extra light olive oil for everything I made in the Actifry.