There are certain kitchen tools I just could not live without. The favorite things I reach for everyday. The items that get left out on the counter.
I find I love looking at kitchen gadgets online and in stores. But how often would I use some of them? Gadgets tend to be specific to one use only, and they cutter up drawers and cabinets. And often it’s just easier to use the knife I already have out or the old hand grater rather than have yet another item in the kitchen.
First and foremost, my Kitchenaid Mixer. I keep it in a cabinet because it takes up so mush space on the counter, but I must haul it out several times a week. This one machine and attachments can handle the vast majority of your kitchen chores. It’s an investment to be sure, but will last for years.
Secondly, the Kitchen aid attachments. I own a bunch: pasta attachments make it so easy to make fresh pasta, the spiralizer set which makes it so easy to get several pounds of apples ready for applesauce or a pie, the food grinder and shredder/slicer kit which can make my own hamburger or slice /shred veggies in no time, the grain mill which allows me to make my own fresh whole wheat flour. There are even more accessories which I don’t have – the ice cream bowl, the pasta press, ravioli maker, a flex edge beater blade….the list goes on and on.
My Laptop must be third. I scan and keep all my recipes, notes on how to make homemade substitutes, look up recipes and ingredients….as well as the rest of my life!
Fourth, my wooden spoons:
I Love wooden spoons, & scrapers. My husband thinks I have far too many. They can be used on any surface (even though I don’t own any Teflon skillets). Good ones last forever and can be handed down. Olive wood is great. I have a couple that were my mother-in-laws, that’s how long they can last.
Fifth, My little bowl and tiny whisk are next – I keep it right next to the sink, and use it countless times a day. It can make a slurry to thicken a sauce or gravy, whisk up an egg quickly for a recipe or for scrambled eggs, whisk up a vinaigrette or sauce. I bought a bowl I love, with a handle so it’s easy to hang onto and keep it out where I can see it.
Sixth, my mortars and pestles. I have quite a collection, made of different materials and sizes.
Seventh, My wooden cutting boards. I have one non-wooden one I use specifically for chicken, but these handle the bulk of my chopping, cutting and slicing. I have invested in many simple wooden boards, and a couple fancy ones made of multiple woods. And on that I picked up in Italy made from an old olive tree.
Tenth, Good knives of course, are a basic necessity. I have invested in good ones over the years, mostly Wustolf and Henckles, from paring knives to several sizes of chefs knives. Another item I probably have too many of; I don’t need 3 chef’s knives, but I like the variety of sizes from 6″ to 12″.
Eleven, my Keurig coffee maker. My husband and I disagree on the best kind of coffee. He likes straight up Dunkin Donuts decaf, and I need a caffeine laden-ed French Vanilla. So in the long run it saves us from making a pot of each. I do have the refillable cups so I don’t have so many little plastic things to throw out. And when I do have them I often save them, put the filter and coffee in the compost pile, and use the plastic cup to start plants. I’ve been saving up waiting to start this years seedlings!
Twelfth, my antique hand shredders and grinder – another gift from my grandma and mother -in-law. I couldn’t part with them, and they work as good now as ever.
Thirteen, my pressure cookers. One from my grandmother, and one I bought recently.
I also have a large canning pressure cooker. The old Mirro’s can be hard to find, and the rubber gaskets even harder (though you can find just about anything on line these days). I do really like the Instapot I got a few years ago. It’s easy to use, and can double as a rice cooker, steamer (with a different lid) and slow cooker. I love the convenience off cooking something quickly when I forgot to get dinner started early, or when I can’t.
Fourteen, my micro-plane graters. Super sharp, they make short work of shredding or mincing. See why I don’t mince garlic anymore and use one of these instead.
And finally fifteen, my Ninja blender system. I have smoothie cups that fit right on the base, so I can whirl up a breakfast or snack in a few seconds, then take the cup with me. This thing may perform slightly below the professional Vitamix, but costs a whole lot less, and does just what I need.
There you have it – 15 of my favorite things.
I have more things in my kitchen, but these are the items I use every week. Please tell me what your favorites are – and what great item did I miss?