Sunday, February 7, 2021

Kitchen and Cooking Essentials

For the past ten months I have not dined out unless you call ordering a sandwich from a sandwich shop and eating it in your car dining out.  A trip to the Wendy's drive through is considered a real and infrequent treat.  Cooking has been something I have always enjoyed but since I don't make frequent trips to the grocery store either due to Covid, planning meals and finding ingredients now is essential.

But what else has been essential for a well-functioning kitchen?  These are the items that I could not live without in my own kitchen.......

1) Good Knives

Hubby gave me a knife block with a set of very good quality knives for Christmas years ago and while the gift did not wow me at the time, it's one of the best things he's given me and I use them every day.  Good knives are expensive and you get what you pay for but having two of three very good quality knives is essential to a functioning kitchen.  Try these to start:

2) Salt and Pepper Grinders

This is not something I had in my kitchen a few years ago but now having the tools to grind salt and pepper for recipes is essential.  You can spend a fortune on a set of these but you don't have to.  Try this very reasonably priced set to add to your own kitchen.

This set is more expensive and I have these in my kitchen. Highly recommend.

3)  Quality Pots and Pans

Growing up my mother had a set of Revereware that she used every day.  She was not a "cook" so when I ventured out, over time, I slowly learned that having really good cookware is essential to your kitchen. Like knives, good quality cookware is expensive.  When I lived near Pittsburgh, I collected an entire set of All Clad from their infamous warehouse sales and never looked back.  My favorite brands are All Clad and Le Creuset.  Dirty little secret - stalk your local TJ Maxx as I have bought both there for a fraction of the price.  Williams-Sonoma also puts these brands on sale.  It is worth investing in these pots.

4) Spices

My spice cabinet in my kitchen is bulging and I love having every kind of spice you could ever want or need for a recipe.  I buy mine online at Penzey's or shop at The Fresh Market (not during Covid though).

5) Kitchen Tools

Every functioning kitchen needs basic tools like spatulas, wooden spoons, whisks, graters, strainers, etc.  What works for your really comes down to personal preference. 

6) Food Processor and/or Blender

If you really cook you likely need both a blender and a food processor.  I use my blender more as it is easier to clean but both are staples in a well-functioning kitchen.

Ready, get set, cook!

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