I took it as a sign that I should write about my favorite kitchen gadgets when I saw this recent post over at The Kitchn. I had been contemplating writing about what I use most in the kitchen, and it was the final push I needed.
We cook a lot, and while we do have some nice gadgets, most of our cookware is basic and moderately priced.
David and I received a set of these knives two Christmases ago. It’s a low to mid-range brand that has served us well thus far. I use the paring and chef’s knives most often. You can purchase the Victorinox chef’s knife at Amazon for $23. It’s currently rated at 5 stars (with 263 reviews).
Cuisinart 14 Cup Food Processor
Everyone tells you it’s a must have for the home cook. They’re right. This was another Christmas gift, and while we don’t use it as often as we’d like, it’s wonderful to have around when we need to whip up pesto or blend soup.
I’m not quite sure how I lived without this. It’s fantastic for chopping and mincing herbs (I use it mostly for parsley). I prefer those with two blades and a double handle, as they are easier to control.
Ikea Cutting Boards
Ikea cutting boards are cheap and of decent quality. I buy both the wooden and plastic boards. The wooden boards are used for cutting vegetables and for displaying cheeses and other spreads during parties.
In my opinion this is a must-have item for home cooks. Perfect for grating hard cheeses, citrus, ginger, cloves, etc etc. A flat-surface microplane is multi-functional, but I prefer our rotary grater for cheeses.
Here’s a story David never hears the end of. My friend K brought me back this awesome metal hand-held citrus juicer from Costa Rica (or Mexico, I can’t remember – she travels a lot). I LOVED it. In the summertime, I make loads of tart, citrus-drenched cocktails, and this juicer was indispensable. Then David broke it. I was so upset. It has been replaced with lemon and lime juicers (in citrus-coordinating colors, of course) that I picked up at Sur la Table. But I still miss my old one, especially because I know it cost K under a buck.
Calphalon Nonstick Pans
This is a perfect example of a non-fancy item we use in the kitchen. Cookware can be phenomenally expensive, and I know that we will someday replace our pans with lovely copper, cast iron or stainless steel pieces. For now, these work just fine, especially considering that we don’t even have a gas range. I find myself using the 12″ everyday pan most often.
Piral Terra Cotta Pot
This gets used more than our dutch oven, believe it or not. It’s quite similar to the one shown except taller, and I got it for a steal at Sur la Table. We use it often to make David’s famous, buttery rice pilaf.
I think I use these OXO tongs just as often as I use wooden spoons.
Expobar Espresso Machine
Next up, my top 10 ingredients.