7 Surprising Facts About Everyday Kitchen Appliances

toasterEvery day, we rely on various kitchen appliances to simplify our lives, often taking for granted just how innovative and peculiar some of these gadgets can be. From high-tech juicers to refrigerators designed specifically for kimchi, these devices not only perform their intended functions but also hold some rather surprising facts that might just make you see them in a new light. Here are a few interesting facts about the kitchen tools we use every day.

1. Juicero’s Over-Engineered Juicer: Remember Juicero? This company released a $699 juicer that needed Wi-Fi, an app, and QR-coded produce packs that had to be scanned before use. Journalists discovered that squeezing the packs by hand yielded the same results as using the expensive machine. Not long after this discovery, the company closed down. Interestingly, the founder, Doug Evans, continued his ventures into eccentric health trends like “Raw Water” and now champions sprouts as a superfood.

2. Microwave Hazards: An unplugged microwave can retain enough residual electricity to be lethal, sometimes months after being disconnected. It’s crucial not to attempt repairs unless you’re trained to safely discharge the capacitor.

3. Korea’s Kimchi Fridges: In Korea, over 98% of households own a dedicated kimchi refrigerator, with some families even owning two. These specialized fridges are so popular that they’ve been ranked as the most desired household appliance in national surveys.

4. Dishwasher Origins: Tired of her china breaking during handwashing, Josephine Cochrane took matters into her own hands and invented the dishwasher. Her creation ensured that delicate dishes could be cleaned without the risk of damage.

5. Weather Forecasting Toaster: In 2001, Robin Southgate created a toaster that could burn the day’s weather forecast right into your morning toast, combining breakfast with a daily update.

6. Car Coffee Maker: The Hertella Auto Kaffeemachine, introduced in 1959 for the Volkswagen Beetle, was the first dashboard-mounted coffee maker. It even featured porcelain cups that attached magnetically to the brewer for added convenience.

7. Tea Time Power Surges: In England, the use of electric kettles causes significant spikes in power demand during halftime at football matches, as thousands simultaneously rush to make a cup of tea.

These facts reflect the quirky and innovative spirit of kitchen appliance design and usage. But what about you? What’s the one kitchen appliance you simply can’t live without?

More Than Just a Utility: Five Fascinating Facts About Washing Machines

At a glance, the washing machine might appear to be merely a mundane household device, but there’s much more to this appliance than meets the eye. This unassuming marvel of the industrial revolution holds a unique position in our homes and our history. Let’s dive into some fascinating facts that illuminate the significance of washing machines.

Preparation for washing, viewed from inside the washer
Photo by depositphotos.com

1. The Revolutionizing Invention: Many credit the washing machine as the greatest invention of the industrial revolution, and for a good reason. The device dramatically cut down the time spent on laundry, freeing up precious hours for other pursuits. Some argue that it has been instrumental in the women’s liberation movement, releasing women from the ties of domestic labor. In fact, several economists have suggested that the washing machine has made a more profound impact on the world than even the internet.

2. A Mainstay in Amish Communities: The Amish community is well-known for its restrictions on technology use, but there’s one exception they’ve nearly universally embraced – the motorized washing machine. This appliance, despite its modern design, has found a place in their tech-minimalistic lives, proving its indispensable nature.

3. A Legacy of Innovation: Supermodel Kate Upton shares an interesting connection with the history of washing machines. Her great-grandfather co-founded the Whirlpool Corporation and invented the first mass-produced electric washing machine, a device that has shaped the lives of millions around the globe.

4. A Metaphor for the Brain: Recent research draws a curious parallel between our brains and modern washing machines. Just as washing machines have evolved to include sophisticated programming, so too have our brains. However, this advanced development has made both more susceptible to breakdowns and likely to incur costly disorders.

5. A Tale of Mailing Laundry: It might seem unthinkable in today’s world, but for approximately 50 years, mailing laundry was a common practice. Up until the 1960s, US college students would frequently send their dirty clothes home to be washed and then mailed back, often with food included. These shipments were made using reusable boxes and USPS parcel post. The advent of modern washing machines, which facilitated easier local washing, marked the end of this peculiar tradition of mailing laundry.