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Whether you are a novice cook about to embark on the fulfilling journey of cooking for others, or if you are the head chef in a contemporary café, technology has made life all the more convenient for all of us in the kitchen. From the invention of fire – which inadvertently created the first chef – to the oven and stovetop, technology has given humanity a wide range of inventions that allow us to be more efficient at what we do. Here are the top five appliances that saves times or increases productivity in the kitchen.

Slow cookers

Also known as Crock Pots, this appliance is a life-saver for busy individuals. Using moist heat on a low temperature to cook food, you can just dump your ingredients into it and come back four to ten hours later and serve a steaming hot meal. Often described as a hands-off cooking tool, you can make almost anything – from roast beef to stews to fancy baby-back-ribs.

Herb grinders

Spice up your annual dishes by adding unique herbs. Instead of using a mortar and pestle, this tool makes grinding up herbs much easier and requires less time. Note that the best grinders are made from wood, metal and acrylic – and it comes in varying two, three and four-part models. Add some dill and tarragon onto your mashed potatoes, red and black pepper to the green beans or some cumin seeds, cinnamon, cloves and anise as the final firework to any pumpkin dish.

Fridge Camera

This appliance will remove the need for grocery lists – it will send pictures of the inside of your fridge directly to your smartphone so you could essentially go to the supermarket whenever convenient rather than planning ahead. This method will help prevent buying the same things over and over again, and you never have to worry about running low on a particular ingredient.

Wireless Thermometer

If you are picky about how your meat is cooked, this technology is perfect for you. Digital thermometers help you determine when your steak, pork tenderloin or turkey is ready for dinner. The traditional method is to insert the thermometer in the thickest part of the meat and check the temperature in several places to ensure that the meat is equally cooked. The wireless option can let you monitor from up to 160 feet away, and it will send a notification to your smartphone when the meat reaches the desired temperature. Therefore, you are free to chop up some vegetables for the side salad while allowing the gadget to keep an eye on your roast for you.

Digital Scale

Skip all the stress and potential messiness you will get by measuring your ingredients out manually and step it up digitally. A digital scale will provide more accurate measurements, as measuring cups and spoons differ from brand to brand. Using one scale will ensure quality control and it can also mean less bowls which means less washing. What a win-win situation.