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I have to admit, not celebrating Thanksgiving has given me some funny notions about the notorious turkey baster. When I first saw it on TV, I said, hey, isn’t that the same thing my mom uses to draw snot off of my baby brother’s nose? It also turns out to be one of the other things NBA stars are afraid of, besides their own carelessly discarded used condoms. Extracting semen from freshly used condoms is part of the process known as the turkey baster pregnancy. Who would dispute a paternity test now? That is some lofty aspirations! (Oh my god, pun!)
Traditionally, basters are used to drizzle fat and juice on meat before, during and even after baking or grilling. It lets the drippings be absorbed back into the meat for a more flavorful finish. A process called basting; it is basically cooking the meat in its own fat and juices. The skin or the outer layer of the meat would form a crust and then seal in the moisture. So what you have after is a beautiful golden brown and juicy protein. For food that needs to be grease-free, like ground beef to be used for topping or filling, turkey basters will help with the de-greasing. It is an efficient way of separating unwanted fat without burning yourself with hot drips.
After rounding up the best basters you can order from the internet, I came up with more unconventional uses for the baster. After all, getting more mileage out of your purchase keeps you on top of your game.
Norpro Deluxe Stainless Steel Baster with Injector and Cleaning Brush
For the price of one, you get three Norpro items to make the juiciest and most flavorful golden roasts. It measures 11 inches with a 1.5-ounce capacity. The bulb can create a powerful suction that has minimal to no drips. Before baking or grilling, you may use the injector needle to infuse flavor into meats and potatoes or to add fillings to pastry. Yes, there are basters that cost less but this Norpro is made for use in high heat, even its silicon bulb is heat resistant to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. You can now baste your meat in the oven every half hour or baste every 15 minutes while grilling. Cleanup is easy as a brush is already provided but you can also place it in the dishwasher.
Besides meat, basters are real helpful for other food. Pouring the same amount of pancake batter into the pan every time will make for a lovely stack that can put IHOP to shame. You can have uniform size cupcakes and muffins, and even inject it with rhubarb jam or peach mango filling. Drizzling exact amounts of vinaigrette on salads can feel fancy if you use a baster.
Tovolo Dripless Baster
With its innovative valve mechanism at its angled cylinder tip, it promises a mess-free basting with no wasteful drips. The see-through baster is 11.5 inches long, is dishwasher safe and comes with a cleaning brush and extra tip. It can hold up to 2 ounces of liquid.
Have you ever popped open a bottle of wine only to lose the cork at the end of the night? Your wine won’t ever have to go stale or lose its spirit overnight. Since the bulb is detachable, you can use it to separate your egg yolks from your egg whites. The bulb will pick up the yolk and you can squeeze it to release back again. Who knew a turkey baster can be very useful in making crème brulee? So what are you waiting for, fire up your browser and start looking for recipes calling for separate yolks and egg whites.
Norpro Glass Baster
Another Norpro favorite, the cylinder on this baster is made from top grade tempered glass. It can hold up to 2 ounces and is 11 inches long, and heat resistant to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
To keep kids busy during summer vacations and day long play dates, use a turkey baster to entertain them. They can use a baster, runny watercolor, and some thick paper to make art. They can also play scientist and doctor with this handy tool. Imagine an intense surgery where a stomach tumor needs to get removed with the latest super glass sipper. Thay can do science experiments such as mixing drops of vinegar on baking soda. Playing paper pick-up with a baster is also a fun activity of getting the most paper suck in by the baster. Or play the opposite of blowing wind and sending objects the farthest with this fun tool. Get the kids to spin some yarn into balls for your knitting projects by using the baster as a winding contraption. Just wind the yarn crisscross until it forms into a ball and slip it off down the narrow end of the cylinder. Whatever you let the lids do with this, it will certainly develop their motor skills, sense of wonder and creativity.
Hecuk Heat Resistant Baster
This simple baster has measurements on its tube which makes it good for recipes calling for exact measures. It can hold 1.5 ounces of liquid and is 11 inches long. It can easily be cleaned after use.
Now this is one turkey baster you can take out of your kitchen and introduce to the garage as its new home. If you have furniture or vehicles needing a little retouch from nicks and scratches, extract a tiny amount of paint to paper plate. You no longer have to keep the whole can open to dry while you do your touch ups.
Don’t mistake me for an anti-feminist but I don’t know how to change my own brake fluid. You can do it for me and I will gladly help by disappearing into the kitchen to get a baster and make a sandwich for you. You use the baster to siphon old and dirty brake fluid from the master cylinder reservoir (or whatever you call it).
OXO Good Grips Angled Turkey Baster with Cleaning Brush
Oxo is a brand known for studying and observing a wide range of demographic to be able to produce ergonomically designed products for a specific target, hence the Good Grips line. Not your typical baster, the cylinder on this is angled. The curve makes more sense than having a straight cylinder and having to put your hand farther in the oven if you want to draw juices quickly. The cylinder also has a stand on the upper part of its body so you can have it rest on any surface without worrying about grease touching it. The round silicone bulb is just the right size and shape for an effective siphon and release.
Some of us are even more domesticated than others, but I can just never get it right when it comes to caring for house plants. But what I found out is that in place of a green thumb, my turkey baster can come in handy when watering plants, especially those that are hanging up high. You can avoid “drowning” your dainty herbs and avoid erosion on your pots and terrarium. Beautiful flower arrangements in vases no longer have to be disturbed by throwing out the old water. Just use the baster to replace the murky water.
For kids looking to help around the house, they can use this baster to feed the fish and remove floating dirt from the aquarium. No more awkward “sleeping” goldfish that needs to go to the great ocean in the sky. When you think about it, this baster can actually be used to feed a whole lot of pets and baby animals.
What to Look For
There’s not a lot of science going on when you are looking for a good baster. You don’t really have to compute for the value of suction power and distance of bulb to cylinder tip (because, seriously, who does that?). All you need to do is to read up on which brands can best do the job and read up on reviews. Now we recommend these five basters as users have been raving about them. We determined what features made them the best: the non-toxic and heat-resistant material used, the strong suction that the bulb makes, the amount of liquid the cylinder can take and hold, the ease of cleaning all of its parts, and all of the bells and whistles that the brand can uniquely offer. Buy a baster or two for all your home and kitchen needs. Who knows, once you get one you might even get people to help you at the kitchen.
The best baster you can find come from the most trusted brands for fewer than twenty bucks, you may even chance upon something good for more or less 5 dollars. With a very good baster, you can get so much use out of it and you surely get more than a tenfold in mileage and worth. We’ve rounded up five of the top reviewed basters online and if you haven’t got one yet, what are you waiting for? Click on any of the links and start purchasing.