My Top 5 Kitchen Tools.
I love cooking. I like firing up a frying pan and coming out with a healthy tasty dinner for my fiancee and myself. (Fiancee… that’s a new thing, very exciting) There are a number of kitchen tools I use that make it easier, that I’d love to share with you.
5. A Good Cast Iron Pan
Start with something pre-seasoned so you can cook right away, a pan like this is ideal.( Pre Seasoned Cast Iron Skillet with Silicone Hot Handle Holder – 12.5 inch – by Utopia Kitchen)
The hot handle is a great benefit and either 10 inches or 12 inches is all you need for a normal size family of 2-4. It cooks up pancakes, sauteed vegetables, and with the right amount of heat will give you a great sear. Avoid acids at first, and clean it with only a little soap and hot water, and dry it right away.
4. A Coffee Grinder
Whether is creating a custom spice blend to rub onto steaks, breaking up cardamom pods for flavoring, or creating a little rice flour with a quick blend, this does everything but grind my morning coffee. I’m a huge fan of Bodum, and recommend this one, though you can often find it in other fun colors to match your kitchen.
Bodum Bistro Electric Blade Coffee Grinder, Black
Tong-ta-tong tong. That’s the noise we make every time we pick them up or hand them over to another person. I have ones that are silicone covered, like the ones up there, ones with metal end, big sturdy ones for grabbing meat off the grill, tiny ones for tossing salads in a bowl with dressing. I use them for fishing canning jars out of my Sous Vide bath, I toss them on the platter when serving, letting guests help them selves.
2. Canning Jars
We’re not just talking about hipster salads. (Though I’m not immune to making a good hipster salad)
We’re talking canning jars for mixing up salad dressings. Storing broths in, baking small cakes in, using in a water bath for egg custards, for drinking out of, taking homemade instant soups to work and.. making hipster salads. Canning jars are an awesome kitchen tool, not to be overrated. Keep a variety of sizes on hand. I recommend:
Also, consider learning to do pickling, fermenting and jam making. These are awesome versatile kitchen tools.
1. A Sous Vide tool
This could have easily been my Phillips Air Fryer or my Instant Pot. Heck, even my Traeger Grill is pretty useful. The number one slot belongs to my Sans Air Sous Vide though. Sous Vid is still new to the home cook and frankly looks a little alien. You heat up a water bath, seal meat into an airtight container (I use jars, freezer safe zip lock, or food saver bags.) Slip it into the water at the designated temperature, cook for the designated time, and fish it out when done. A final sear makes it ready for the table.
The magic of Sous Vide is that meat cooks at a specific temperature is very very had to overcook, and retains a moistness and cooked thoroughness that no other cooking method can really achieve. If you’re doubting the SousVide as my most important kitchen tool, consider this.
Yesterday, I turned the Sans Air Sous Vide on at 135degrees and cooked a pork tenderloin over 90 minutes. Fished it out and tossed it in the fridge. I changed the temperature to 160 degrees and dropped in 5lbs of chicken thighs. They were boneless , skinless and frozen. When the temperature came back to 160, I timed them for 3 hours, then fished them out. The chicken got chopped up, half of it got doused in some buffalo sauce for easy buffalo chicken salads this week (See recipe below). The rest is on hand to go into chicken tacos, burritos, stir fry, or chicken fried rice. (Paleomg has a great recipe here: http://paleomg.com/my-spin-on-chicken-fried-rice/)
The tenderloin got sliced up and sauteed for dinner. While the vegetables steamed and I chopped a salad it warmed up, remaining tender and tasty. Dinner was on the table, 15 minutes total from prep to plate. That’s why it tops my list of kitchen tools.
Looking for More information?
More information on Sous Vide can be found at the following sources.
Chef Steps: https://www.chefsteps.com/activities/what-is-sous-vide
More information on canning in jars can be found here:
Food In Jars : http://foodinjars.com/
Natural Center for Home Food Preservation: http://nchfp.uga.edu/how/can_home.html