I am constantly stocking the kitchen with tools to make my cooking and baking experiences better than the last. Other than the grocery store a kitchen supply store would be my favorite place to go for a shopping spree. Having the proper tools in the kitchen for the task(s) can make preparing breakfast, lunch, dinner, and/or dessert a breeze. Everyone’s picks for top tools I’m sure are different based on the type of cooking/baking/grilling is going on in their own home kitchen. Today, I’ll share with you my top tool must haves for a great cooking/baking event.
Wooden Spoons: I love wooden spoons. Heavy wide ones are my favorite and the ones I get dreamy eyed for. These wonderful creations are good for mixing anything from Kool-Aid to pound cakes. You can crumble ground beef or make scrambled eggs in a hot skillet and, wooden spoons are safe for non-stick skillets so there will be no scratching hazzards on that nice teflon. This favorite tool of mine is always on deck and always at arms length when I need it.
Rubber Spatulas: Rubber spatulas are priceless, I love them so much because they are good for mixing and blending and for allowing me to scrape every drop of blueberry batter into the muffin pans. They are flexible and reliable to bend their way into a can of thick tomato paste. Stock up on these.
Box Shredder: Oh my goodness!! Shredding carrots for carrot cake and zucchini breads takes only a few seconds. I never have had too much of either to think about taking out the food processor. I also use a shredder regularly to shred cheese for tacos and macaroni and cheese. Believe me when I tell you that self shredded cheese is life. It tastes like real cheese and melts like a dream.
Salad Spinner: Ok, I have had an unopened salad spinner in the basement for years. It was still in the box until this year when a bag of lettuce turned up with something very unappetizing. It didn’t take me long to go downstairs and pull my salad spinner right on out. And, let me tell you I looooovvveee it!!!! This is another tool that is definitely worth every penny. All you have to do is buy the lettuce cut it on the board as large or small as you’d like, put it in the spinner, run water over the chopped lettuce, put the top on and spin the water out using the button or crank on the top. This is wonderful. It basically dries the lettuce out. No more wet lettuce. Yes!… You can even store it in the same container for a few of days. It will stay green and crisp for at least 3 days after the cutting and spinning.
Portion Scoops: These life savers are everything. They promise to deliver uniform cookies, muffins and, cupcakes every time. I first learned of these before the millinum while working at a bakery. And, ever since I have not made cookies, muffins or cupcakes without them. Oh and they are good for meatballs too!
Measuring Spoons and Cups (Dry & Liquid): I’m going to say you need two full matching sets of each. Dry measuring cups are where you would want to measure flours, sugars or any other dry ingredients. They are usually plastic or metal and come in a set of 4 to 5 cups. The standard basic measures for cups are 1, 1/2, 1/3 and 1/4 cups. Measuring spoons come in sets also and are best when the spoons are matched. Matching sets allow for accurate measuring based on that particular set. Liquid measures usually come in see through glass or acrylic and are clearly marked and lined for clear and concise measuring of your wet ingredients. They too come in different measurements from 1 cup and up to 4 cups for basic home use.
Potato Masher: When I watched Rachel Ray use a potato masher to crumble cooked ground beef I said to myself “She is a genius!”. And, since then I use a potato masher to crumble my ground meats when cooking. Using the masher cuts the time in half to crumble the meat into very small crumbles for tacos, sloppy joes, and chili. Using the masher this way is making the tool a multi use product. Awesome!
Large Metal Mixing Bowl: My most valuable tool in the kitchen is my large metal mixing bowl. I use this bowl to mix almost everything from cake batter to meatloaf and, I also use it as a cake cover in a pinch. It has been with me for 18 years. It was my mother’s. I don’t know how long she had it prior to my take over of this valued heirloom. When I moved out at 24 years of age the bowl came with me. It still it the number one pick in the kitchen for me even with at least five other bowls jockeying for the number one spot.
Heavy Wire Whisk: Anything beginning with eggs, sugar and oil needs a wire whisk. Anything ending with a dry mix going in with the eggs, sugar and oil needs a wire whisk. I pull this out anytime I don’t need butter to bake. A whisk will build arm muscles and will relieve you from having to pull out a hand mixer or stand mixer. Neither of which I will do if I can handle the job with my trusty wire whisk.
Chef’s Knives: Always, Always, Always have a good chef’s knife. As a matter of fact have two. I say this because you may prefer one knife for a particular cutting or chopping job and another for something more delicate or challenging. I am not an expert with the knives but I tend to use at least 2 knives when chopping my raw veggies.
Stocking your kitchen with these very basic cooking tools will make you look and feel like a pro in no time flat. This list is my top ten in no particular order; I could very easily make it an infinite list. I value my kitchen items so very much. Now that I am thinking about it more, I guess I am fond of all my kitchen tools for one reason or another. Even though I am well stocked on cooking and baking utensils and tools, I still have a never ending kitchen tool wish list. And, that’s a whole other story. 🙂
What kitchen gadgets top your list in your kitchen?
Are any of my top ten on your top ten?
Chat with you tomorrow,