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Personal Shopper: Birthday Gifts for Jordan's Little (well) Brother

Says Jordan: "I am seeking out your expert gift-finding skills once again as I am at a loss for a birthday gift for my little brother (well, not quite little - he's turning 29) but still little to me! Anyway, every year I try to get him a cool kitchen gadget as he is the epitome of the true bachelor. I have gotten him eveything from the Pizazz Pizza Oven to the toaster that simultaneously cooks eggs. This year, I am finding it a little trickier and your help would be GREATLY appreciated."

Hi, Jordan! This is Marian the Contrarian, and putting this together has made me hungry. Not that you needed to know that. But Korean barbecue . . . okay, okay.

We've mentioned Alton Brown here on Outblush before, but it's hard not to recommend his 1) I'm Just Here For the Food ($27) to anyone looking for a kitchen tutorial that is actually interesting and actually makes sense. And as for the gadgets? One of the oldest and most useful kitchen gadgets of all (it probably predates the kitchen, now that I think about it) is the 2) mortar and pestle, and this green marble set ($13) is handsome enough that he could just put it on a shelf to look at if he wasn't going to actually cook with it. A really cool gadget that he will want to use, even if not on food, is this 3) Connoisseur mini infrared thermometer ($32), which can be pointed at something and beeped to get a temp reading, all without touching the something. Very useful and very cool. Now if he keeps all of his utensils in one messy drawer, you could try to cure him of that with the 4) Click n Cook ($35). This device is a spatula with interchangeable heads, appropriate for different tasks. And hey. It's also a toy. Ending on another Alton Brown note, the genius himself has said that there's only room for one unitasker in the kitchen: 5) a fire extinguisher ($30). Don't get him just this, that's no fun, but if he doesn't have one and he's not very good with the hot stoves and such...

Anyway, happy birthday to your brother, Jordan, and thanks for thinking of us! Tell me what he ends up making!

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