Pana & Primo Digital Models
Baking is precise, and accurate and consistent measurement is essential to the success of the finished product. All measuring utensils are not created equal and methods of how we measure ingredients vary. Even the weight of different brands of flour can affect the measurement and the outcome of a cake. If the gravy is too thick or too thin, the home cook can usually remedy the problem. We can add a little extra "this" or "that" and "fix" the crisis. With baking for example, that luxury is not an option.
In the world of professional baking, accurate measuring is assured by using a scale. Some cookbook recipes also give measurements in both volume (cups, teaspoons, etc.) and weight (grams, ounces, etc.). KosherEye wanted to enter the "world of accurate ingredient measurement!"
Escali is the producer of scales for both home and professional use. The small privately owned company, located in Burnsville, MN, was founded in 1999 by Theo Prins, CEO and owner. Prior to starting the company, Mr. Prins spent 20 years, mostly in Europe, in the professional digital scale industry. He felt that improvement was needed in the manufacturing and design of digital scales and he based the Escali design on that premise. Initially, the product line was for professional and restaurant chefs. Mr. Prins next concentrated on developing scales for the consumer. Using the professional design as a basis, he developed a scale that incorporated the same functionally and design but was geared for home usage.
The Pana Digital kitchen scale is the newest addition to the Escali line and was developed in conjunction with King Arthur Flour. The Pana has a patented feature and is the first kitchen scale to provide measurements in cups and tablespoons and, also by weight. This high precision scale is pre-programmed for precise volume measurements of more than 150 ingredients.
Frankly, the Pana scale fascinated us and we couldn't wait to try it. KosherEye spoke with Jane Gaither, Nashville Tennessee, Sales Representative for Escali scales. Jane fascinated us just as much as the scales! She has a love for baking, regularly appears on a local Nashville CBS affiliate television program as the Gourmet Gadget Gal and worked in a bakery where they weighed ingredients instead of measuring them. She shared her recipe for Friday Night Chocolate Cake, which lists the ingredients by weight, and we used it to test the Pana scale.
A fabulous feature of the Pana is the Tare option. This feature allows you to set the scale back to zero. When using a container, it subtracts the containers weight to obtain the weight of its contents. This feature allows you to add consecutive ingredients to the container, and weigh each ingredient individually. Translated – using one bowl, Tare resets the weight/volume as each new ingredient is added. How wonderful we thought – add the flour, reset by pressing Tare, add the sugar, reset by pressing Tare. No cups or measuring spoons were needed; only the scale, a few bowls and the ability to add multiple ingredients to the same bowl. We wanted to test the volume feature and, while the cake was baking, measured some flour, sugar and cocoa using the ingredient codes. It was very easy; just enter the ingredient code and add the ingredient slowly until the desired measurement is reached.
And then there is the scale for the “simpler” life…The Primo Digital kitchen scale is Escali's bestseller and is rated best value by a leading independent consumer magazine. It is available in 12 delightful colors. The two-button design of the scale makes it is easy to use; it also has the Tare feature and weighs in grams or ounces. KosherEye had purchased a large package of kosher pastrami (Thank you Costco) and, using the Primo scale, weighed out individual portions. We packaged and froze the portions for later use.
In addition to accurately weighing ingredients for cooking or baking, Escali scales are also used by people who need to monitor their food portions. Both scales are sleek in design and their size allows for easy counter-top storage. KosherEye looks forward to continued use of both models. The Pana scale is a "must have" luxury for the professional home baker! The Primo scale is value priced and is an ideal gift for every home.
Additional recipes are available on The King Arthur Flour website.
For additional product information, visit Escali.com. Escali is offering KosherEye readers a 15% discount and free shipping on the purchase of any of their Kitchen or Bath Scale styles. Just enter promotion code 4kosher when checking out. Offer valid through July 31, 2010.
Let us know how you use your kitchen scale–hopefully it is an Escali!