Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Steam Powered Stirring Contrivance
  (+19, -3)(+19, -3)
(+19, -3)
  [vote for,

A saucepan sits atop a stove. Within, a thick tomato sauce simmers gently. Warm vapours of flavour waft into the kitchen air, imparting an atmosphere of security, the odour of good and honest family values, as well as the more usual, sensually arousing aromas.

However, not all is well. Mama has popped out on an errand, and nobody is stirring the sauce! Within moments, sugars and other compounds from the rich tomato based ichor will adhere themselves to the base of the pan, and begin to burn.

This will inevitably have the following consequences:

1) Mama's renown and respect within the community for her faultless cooking will be ruined overnight.

2) Papa, disillusioned, will eventually leave her, taking another woman for his wife, one who happens to make a wonderful lasagne.

3) The children, distraught, will grow twisted, their stunted lives wrought meaningless and unfulfilling with unrelenting schedules of casual sex, limited drug abuse and small time criminality.

4) One of them, bereft of a stable pasta-sauce based upbringing, will find themselves slipping into a cycle of debt and prostitution.

5) Finally, returning home late one night, drunk, alone, and destitute, she will trip over a discarded fast-food wrapper and hit her head. She wont be found until 8 weeks later.

It doesn't have to end this way.

The Autotumultatron can be obtained either as a complete pre-integrated unit, or as an upgrade kit designed to fit most existing pan sizes.

The Autotumultatron is largely made from cast pieces of copper, iron or brass and is comprised of the following articles:
Boiler unit
Geared Pan Lid with Stirring Appendages
Side Mounted Drive Gear
Adjustable Crosshead Bearing and Double-Action Drive Assembly
Assorted mounting rods, connection tubes, valves and whistles

Once assembly is complete, the Autotumaltatron can be placed upon any stove (works equally well with gas, electric, or fusion stoves) the boiler filled with (preferably distilled) water, and sealed, ensuring the safety valve is secured appropriately.

Upon heating, the water within the boiler is prone to steamification, upon which it attempts to expand. Thwarted by its steely confines, an increase in pressure is experienced within the unit.

At this point, food in the pan section will be noticeably warm, but normally, nowhere near the temperature conducive to potentially disastrous neglection-based spoilage scenarios.

The Commencement Lever can at this point be engaged, the result of which will be a rush of pressurised steam into the Double-Action Drive Assembly, causing the main drive actuator to motivate longitudinally. This action is translated into circular motion via the side, vertically mounted Drive gear (by means of the adjustable crosshead bearing unit), the teeth of which, engaging with the geared pan lid will cause that to rotate in the horizontal plane.

Being made from heavy cast iron or bronze, the Geared Pan Lid will rotate with a noticable rumble, somewhat akin to the sound of a ponderous millstone.

Stirring appendages connected to the interior of the Geared Lid will cause regular perturbations within the contents of the pan, reducing their predilection to stick and overheat.

Mama is thus provided with the opportunity to retire and fully enjoy an afternoon of daytime television without being consumed by guilt and the ever-present fear of domestic disintegration, she being fully cognisant that an impeccable tomato based sauce will be available in time for this evening's family meal.

The Autotumultatron can be utilised for the preparation of tomato-based sauces, popcorn, toffee, scrambled eggs or hot milk.

A variation of the Autotumultatron, the Allotumultatron, can be powered using the heat provided by one stove-ring, but configured so as to provide perturbations to a secondary pan occupying the position of another. It manages this by separation of the boiler unit from the rest of the assembly, maintaining the appropriate connections using a flexible pressure hose.
zen_tom, Sep 05 2006

someone is trying to patent it... http://www.freepate...ne.com/5617774.html
[xandram, Sep 05 2006]

Risottomatic Risottomatic
Far less exciting to use, but similar. [Worldgineer, Sep 05 2006]


       What does this thing do again?
DrCurry, Sep 05 2006

You Lunatic.
gnomethang, Sep 05 2006

       It stirs things. Using a steam-powered mechanism. In other words (as evidenced in the sub-title) it's a steam powered stirring contrivance.
zen_tom, Sep 05 2006

       + stir the batter for this bun.
xandram, Sep 05 2006

       This contrivance is indeed a thing of beauty, [zen_tom]. Mama, the kids and I thank you for it.
methinksnot, Sep 05 2006

       Run that by me again, will you? Exactly how do I get on an [unrelenting schedule of casual sex]?
normzone, Sep 05 2006

       That was the mo steamotionally stirring thing I've read in a long time.   

       Another version of the Autotumultatron, called the Autotomulutulatarizer, spins wildly in any and all foods and beverages, and is powered by second level gravity.
sleeka, Sep 06 2006

       Thankyou all for the positive noises - Mama will be so pleased!   

       [normzone] I haven't actually figured that one out either - but I have noticed that people who seem to have lots of sex, take too many drugs, and on the surface appear to be having what amounts to a nice time, are often the same ones who (in between bouts of telling you how great they are) are quick to tell you about how terrible their lives are and how awfully they feel about having quite so much fun all the time.   

       I just took a look at the alternative patent - but that seems to rely on a separate power source, rather than the rather obvious one provided by the stove.   

       I think there are some fine tuning tweaks to be added to the idea. For example, a reservoir for automatically topping up the boiler with water, and one of those steam-whistles which blows off after some length of time determined by an integral timing device, so as to announce the completion of the cooking, and simultaneously signalling to the occupants of the house that it's Dinner Time <hoooot!>
zen_tom, Sep 06 2006


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