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Gourmet Cheese Baker
Product number: 0829010
Manufacturer: Trudeau
List price: $19.95
Dimensions: 7-1/2" x 2-3/4"
Weight: 2 lb, 3.4 oz
Composition: stoneware, stainless steel
Made In: China
Type: Cheese baker
Color:  White, metallic
Ambitions
Apparent goal: kids gift/registry home kitchens restaurants everywhere
Intended audience: novice advanced beginner good home cook gourmet professional
Diet/nutrition: does not apply scary empty promises helpful essential
Green?: not especially neutral mixed blessing earth friendly green!
Innovative: step back standing still progress trendy genius
Problem solving: no better baby steps solid steps giant steps a revelation
Competition: outclassed follower in the pack strong challenger likely champ
Utility/Quality
Ease of use: impossible frustrating OK simple child's play
Intuitive: Ph.D. required barely logical effortless brilliant
Instructions: missing incomprehensible adequate unnecessary excellent
Quality: cheesy questionable good years of service impressive
Parts to lose: inevitable some/many one-piece self-storing not a problem
Power source: none hands batteries outlet green
Clean-up: nightmare wipe clean soap & water scouring pad dishwasher
Does it work?: not at all adequately well very well perfectly
Availability: airfare required online kitchen store department store supermarket
Packaging
Easy to open?: impossible maddening tolerable good opens itself
Green?: fills a landfill huge waste passable minimal waste impressive
Economy
Time saving: time wasting not really modest substantial huge
Labor saving: less efficient marginal a bit noticeable remarkable
Money saving: money wasted none $ $$ $$$
Beats the old way: worse no change better infinitely entirely new
Where will it live?: garage/attic drawer cabinet countertop elsewhere
Summary
Fulfills ambitions: falls short almost there satisfies exceeds home run
How often used: once/twice ≥daily ≥weekly ≥monthly ≥yearly/holidays
Worth the space?: no does not apply w/unlimited space w/limited space absolutely
Need it?: a luxury discretionary basic equipment for serious cooks get it
Value: ouch! a little pricey worth splurging on the money a deal
Overall rating: skip it fair good very good excellent

Comments: Do you need a cheese baker? Of course not. Is this charming and something you might use for entertaining? Absolutely. The set includes a stoneware cheese plate with handle, a stoneware top cover with small holes to keep the cheese from steaming, and a large-bladed stainless steel spreader.

There are recipes that come with the baker (Brie with Apples, Honey, and Walnut; Reblochon with Mushrooms; Blue Cheese with Port, etc.), but you'll manage just fine on your own, too. Place cheese on the base, dress it up if you like with jam or nuts or roasted garlic, cover it with the lid, place it in the oven at 350°F (175°C) or so and bake for 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and serve.

As with anything that goes in the oven but doesn't look like a pot or a pan, care must be taken to protect yourself, others, and whatever surface you put the baker on, when it is hot. The lid has built-in handles, but they're small and you'll need to take care that they don't slip from your pot holders or oven mitts. Don't use this in the microwave oven.

If you have visions (as we did) of wrapping a small wheel of brie in phyllo dough and baking it in the cheese baker, you will find that a standard small wheel fits very well in the baker, but a standard small wheel, wrapped in dough, does not – it's just a little too big. The interior capacity is 5-1/2" in diameter and 2" high, and the cheese needs a little breathing room, so you may be on the lookout for smaller sizes of cheese or shapes. There is also a little sill around the inside of the baker to contain melted cheese once you cut into it, so you don't want any hanging over the edge.



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