So you’ve been saving up and want to stock your kitchen with some state-of-the-art appliances. First, allow us to compliment you on having your priorities in order. But where to begin? Our Tested column series is a pretty good place to start. Basically, we get the equipment and test it for quality and value so you don’t have to. Then we put together a review of sorts so you can decide whether or not to splurge. Like we said — pretty good deal. Here are five culinary products we’ve tested recently, along with summaries of our reactions and links to our full thoughts.


Cuisinart Fruit Scoop
Any machine that claims to turn humble fruit into a fully formed ice cream analog in just under 20 minutes is treading dangerously close to “water into wine” territory. But this produces the kind of ice cream that dairy-free dreams are made of. $100


Philips Pasta Maker
Philips recognized that there is a large faction of home cooks more sensible than myself who want a faster, less cumbersome method for creating fresh pasta at home. Enter the Philips Pasta Maker. Once I figured it out, the machine performed admirably. $350 


Cuisinart Vertical Waffle Maker
The next time you sit down at the counter of a breakfast spot during the weekend rush, take a look at the waffle maker. Chances are, the sides are going to be caked with countless drips of batter from hours’ worth of waffles pressed to order. Wasteful? Sure. Unsightly? Absolutely. And this waffle conundrum is where the Cuisinart’s Vertical Waffle Maker comes into play. The waffle that emerged from the Cuisinart was a thing of beauty. $80 


LooseLeaf And Zipstrip Herb Strippers
Both products come in at around $8 and aim to alleviate the monotony of stripping herbs of their inedible stems and relieving kale, collards and other leafy greens of their unpalatable ribs. One of the two products impressed mightily. $8


Magical Butter Maker
The idea is that the machine is able to extract nutrients and essential oils from aromatics and infuse them into fats better than traditional stovetop methods because of its unique design and precise temperature control settings. It promises to deliver more flavorful infused butters and oils with higher potency and less waste. $175