Cooking gadgets that cooks love

Most foodies have done it at one point or another.

You see and simply must buy some new or unusual widget or gizmo for the kitchen. It doesn't matter that you don't like rice; that paella pan is coming home.

Now there's a cookbook to help you put all those must-have items to use. Marie Simmons' latest, "Things Cooks Love" (Andrews McMeel Publishing, 2008), was written with gear-loving foodies in mind.

Organized by cuisine, the book introduces tools and appliances from the common to the esoteric, then offers tips for using and caring for the items, as well as recipes for putting them to work.

With the chef's torch, for example, Simmons takes the reader beyond the obvious creme brulee. She suggests using it to brown goat cheese for salads or mozzarella over roasted asparagus and tomatoes.

The chapters also detail the basic ingredients of each cuisine, a huge help if you're wondering what you'll need to stock up on now that you own a karahi (a wok-like pan from India).

However, flipping through this book, which was written in conjunction with kitchen tool company Sur la Table, is a bit dangerous. You could, for example, realize how vacuous life has been without, say, a couscoussiere.

— The Associated Press

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