What The Tech: Father’s Day
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Most dads love cooking outside. But it’s a challenge sometimes to get everyone’s food cooked the way they want it. Someone wants their steak rare, others want it medium and some people who want to ruin a good ribeye ask for well-done. Gadgets can help save the backyard cookout and they make great Father’s Day gifts.
Meater is a wireless meat thermometer that eliminates the guesswork on grilling out a good chicken breast or ribeye. Insert the probe into what you’re cooking and select how you want it done. The app does the rest, keeping track of the internal temperature and doneness you select. It estimates how long it will take and then sends you an alert when it’s 5 minutes away from that temperature. Perfect for the dad who gets distracted by a ballgame playing inside on the TV. It’s operated on a replaceable battery and is dishwasher safe.
Even with the Meater I still recommend a good meat thermometer. While the Meater can show you the temperature where the probe rests inside the meat, if you’re grilling out a thick chicken breast, it’s still a bit of a guess from one end of the chicken to the other. The ThermaPen pro is an accurate thermometer that quickly displays the temperature throughout whatever it is you’re cooking. One version of the Thermapen Pro has an infra-red sensor to show you how hot the grill or griddle is without guessing if it’s hot enough to sear.
Dads who camp or tailgate at ballgames need a portable battery. Not just any battery but a battery-powered generator. The Eco Flow generator has 6 AC plugs, 4 standard USB, 2 USBC ports and a DC car-powered outlet. It charges fast by plugging into a standard electrical outlet. In my test, it powered an old refrigerator for 8 hours. Unlike gas-powered generators, these are super quiet and clean and they’ll hold a charge for months in a storage room in case of an emergency.
Dad can be a hero at entertaining in the backyard with a portable movie projector. Anker Nebula and ViewSonic are two brands with different types of mobile projectors. They all run off rechargeable batteries and have their own speakers. You can play movies and shows from a phone, DVD player, or streaming stick. These also have their own application where you can login to your subscription services. Some are small enough to fit in a back pocket.
There’s a good reason Father’s Day comes along in the early summer because dads love being outside. Best of all, it’s the time of year you can usually find these on sale.