To say we value our mornings here at The Debtist household would be a vast understatement. We like to take it slow, giving to ourselves before we give to the world. Mornings are a source of inspiration. It sets the tone for the rest of the day. We feed Theo (our toothless cat), meditate in bed, and get some exercise in. We clear the dishwasher, throw open windows, and occasionally do a bit of tidying up. Always, we make it a point to sit down at the kitchen island and have breakfast and coffee together. It’s only natural for a bread baker and coffee aficionado prioritizing the things we truly love. Spending our time making breakfast is a ritual that we cling to, and the Balmuda toaster has become the star.
Just recently, we’ve made a new addition to our kitchen and morning routine: a modern, minimalist toaster and electric kettle from Balmuda! Balmuda is a Japanese company promising better mornings with their products. They have achieved world-wide recognition and hype around the products they create. Balmuda has brought our breakfast game to another level. As a bread baker, those words are neither said lightly, nor often. Balmuda’s products have amplified the simplicity of our mornings, while achieving the detail and complexity that we value in something as mundane as a slice of toast and a cup of joe.
Balmuda’s Little Toaster That Can
First, let me wax poetic about the Balmuda toaster. Balmuda’s ground-breaking technology has paved the way for serving bread in its prime state. When I bake sourdough, I use cast-iron combo cookers to create steam, which makes the bread rise. The goal is to get a well-toasted, crunchy exterior while maintaining a soft, moist, inner crumb. Balmuda’s revolutionary toaster does just that by adding 5 ccs of water at the beginning of the process. The added water steams the bread in much the same way my combo-cookers do. This keeps the center of the bread moist, while retaining its flavor. Have you ever eaten an over-toasted piece of bread? What does it taste like? Stale, dry, and honestly, like air. Real bread has flavor, and this little toaster makes sure of that.
Additionally, the toaster has precise temperature regulation, depending on the type of pastry or bread it is cooking. There are special settings for sandwich bread, artisan bread, pastry, and pizza. Each setting ensures that the second-by-second regulation of temperature is ideal for every baked item. There is also an oven mode that allows this toaster to cook more than just bread. Think gratins, cookies, and frozen food items. This toaster has the capability of bringing life back into week-old slices from the freezer. I would go so far as to say that Balmuda has reinvented the toaster, itself.
The sleek profile and matte finish of these toasters exude elegance in the most minimalist way. Interestingly enough, its shape also reminds me of toasters of yore, circa mid-century modern times. Smeg-like in style, it’s no wonder these toasters are now found in high-end department stores such as Williams Sonoma and Nordstrom. It looks great on a wood countertop as much as it does on a cement one. Unlike other toasters, it only has two dials and the feel of them is touch-responsive. The sound of the timer is like rain on a windowpane, and the chime at the end sounds like a gentle alarm clock – way better than your typical, earth-shattering “ding!”.
Balmuda has an electric kettle that is equally as impressive. I’ve written before about our Fellow’s stovetop Stagg kettle, but we are making over the switch to Balmuda’s electric version for multiple reasons. Firstly, our Fellow kettle definitely shows signs of wear. The stovetop grates scratch the bottom surface so that the matte black cover has peeled off and the metal underneath shows. I am hoping the electric Balmuda kettle will avoid this type of wear, since it sits on a heating pad rather than the stove.
The Balmuda kettle is lighter in while and has a smaller profile. A max volume indicator inside the kettle limits the kettle to 500g of water, enough for a pour-over for two. Limiting the size was a conscious decision by the company in order to keep the kettle compact. With the advent of tiny (and tinier) homes, both the kettle and the toaster fits perfectly in most small spaces.
As far as function goes, the pour itself is almost weightless, a result of Balmuda’s ergonomic proportions. The handle fits snugly in my hand, with a flat bevel to rest my thumb, resulting in better control. The spout can pour water painstakingly slow or insanely fast, it’s up to you. The kettle heats quite quickly at the push of a tiny lever at the base of the kettle stand. A neon light bulb indicates when the water is hot. The only downside is the missing thermometer found on Fellow Stagg kettles. This is compensated by the fact that, unlike Fellow kettles, the Balmuda lid can be pushed down and sealed, keeping the contents of the kettle hot, for longer.
Honestly, both the Balmuda toaster and the Balmuda kettle have lended our mornings with that feel-good vibe. Balmuda has somehow used two common appliances to capture the essence of slow-living in a tangible form. The mission statement summarizes the beauty of Balmuda’s products.
“In the past, appliances were designed to eliminate inconvenience. Today, however, with our daily lives more convenient than ever, what people look for in appliances seems to be changing.
What people demand from tools and services today is, in a word, experiences, whether surprising, moving, or joyful. At BALMUDA, we create home appliances designed to deliver a thrilling, wonderful experience. “Balmuda CEO Gen Teraro
I couldn’t agree more.
This post is sponsored by Balmuda, a Japanese company revolutionizing the way we experience mornings. They have kindly gifted me their famous toaster and electric kettle and it has really brought our breakfast routine to another level. This blog post is an honest review as to how my experience has been elevated by Balmuda.
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