Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Cooking Utensils

OXO, Chefs Cooking, UK, 1950
OXO, Chefs Cooking, UK, 1950

Since y'all are the best readers to be found on the internet, I know you can help me. Peter, my second son has recently become very interested in cooking (yeah!). He often calls me for recipes and he is also enjoying trying new and different recipes. He has a birthday coming up very soon and I would like to get him something special for his kitchen. Currently it is equipped in a very basic (cheap), bachelor style.

So here's where you come in... What are the tools that you can't do without in your kitchen? What do you think a budding chef would need the most that's not ridiculously expensive?


Anonymous said...

A heat resistant rubber spatula, and a good flipper.

Anonymous said...

I would get him a good chef's knife, nice kitchen shears, a serrated bread knife,, wooden cutting board, a stiff stainless steel whisk, some Pyrex baking dishes. The more expensive things I love are Kitchen Aid Mixers and the Williams-Sonoma Goldtouch baking collection. Hope this helps.

american girl primitives said...

How about these things:

a good spatula for flipping just about anything, I would do silicone

a rolling pin

a colander

a vegetable peeler

Hope this helps,

Love the Decor! said...

One of my favorites is the Pampered Chef Chopper.
The other thing that I think is a must have is a mini food processor. It is amazing how much time both of these things save me in my kitchen.

Jessi said...

All of the above + a garlic press. (I have the one from Pampered Chef and it works well.)

Farmgirl Cyn said...

1st and foremost...a good knife, with a long thingy to sharpen it with. Mine are Wusthof, bought at Bed Bath and Beyond, using one of their 20% off coupons. Next would be a butcher block cutting board to go with the knife. Make sure it is a large one. It should be bigger than the knife when the knife is placed on the diagonal on the board.
The other thing I cherish in my kitchen is my trusty Cuisinart food processor. Mine is 20 years old and still going strong. And I use it several times a week!

Young Wife said...

Besides good knives I'd say multiple cutting boards. You always need more than one when you're making a meal. One for the meat, one for chopping veggies, one for slicing fruit, etc. Having multiple cutting boards means you're less likey to cross contaminate. Oh, and good dish towels!

WhiteStone said...

Did anyone mention a stainless steel colander? At least one. And a strainer, medium size. And I have a set of 8 or more stainless steel bowls, all gleaned at yard sales, that get used big time. A decent casserole. Pie pans of glass. Skillets of every size. Wow, the list can go on and on.

Scientific Housewife said...

They have a set of Calphalon heat-resistant utensils, all the basics, at Bed Bath and Beyond. I got it for a wedding present and they are so useful!

Anonymous said...

What about a George Foreman grill?

JKaye said...

Here are a few of the things my kids have called up and asked if I have extras of that I could give them:

Pot holders
Dish towels
Pie plate
Measuring cups and spoons
Coffee maker

J.A.Scherff said...

odd sized measuring spoons - my Mom got them for me last Christmas and I do not know how I lived before!

Tea kettle

I have a big cooking pot that came with a strainer and steamer that fit inside - amazing for pasta, boiling potatoes, making stock and steaming veggies!!

meat pounder thingy :)

can and bottle opener

GOOD knives (I am in LOVE with my Cutco set! They also have awesome steak knives).

Cutting boards - I've got a set of plastic ones that are color coded for what they get used for (so no cross contamination!)

the lady of the house said...

Knives!! Good ones! You can cook with anything else in a kitchen if it is crap or not but knives... crappy knives are just dangerous :)

Di said...

Hmm... must haves for a budding chef:


Salt and Pepper GRINDERS,

Hand Mixer,

Spatulas of different sizes,

I agree with Food Processor,


Rolling Pin,


Marytoo said...

My son had always enjoyed cooking when he was growing up, but we always cooked in Army-size batches, so when he moved out he was forever calling to ask me how to cook something for 1 or 2 (not that I knew!). So I started a collection of small recipes for him.

Anonymous said...

I agree with everyone who suggested a good set of knives.

My must haves are:

stainless steel pots and pans (you can buy them very inexpensive either with a coupon and good sale at the department store or at Walmart)

Pot holders

Dish towels and bar clothes


rubber made rubber spatula/scraper

pizza stone

cast iron skillet ( I LOVE mine! and I only paid about $15 at Walmart for it!!)

metal or glass mixing bowls (glass are more versatile since they can be microwaved)

a few pieces of pyrex or corningware baking dishes (the kind with lids that are dishwasher and oven safe since they can be used in the microwave, oven and as storage)

I love my kitchen aid mixer--can't live without it but it is a pricey item. My bread machine is the other item I can't live without. It was a gift but I believe DH got it for about $50 or $60 at Sears a few years back.

Anonymous said...

My two favorite peices of equipment... a rice cooker and a crockpot. Both are farely affordable. I can't live without either.

Mobile-phone-blog said...

My favorites is the Pampered Chef Chopper. I love are Kitchen Aid Mixers and the Williams-Sonoma Goldtouch baking collection. Hope this helps.

Anonymous said...

I agree with the knives idea and most of the things mentioned here. When I was first figuring out how to cook the one thing that helped me the most was the Vision-ware pots that you could see through. That way I knew if I was burning something on the bottom :) Also, a hand-held pot strainer helps tremendously. Here's the exact one I have http://www.simplysmartliving.com/Easy-Grip-Pot-Strainer_p_112-365.html

Sharon said...

How about a collection of your recipes that your son loves to eat? You coul type the recipes on the computer, print and put in plastic covers into a notebook. I also love my wooden spoons and mis master for when I make my Christmas cookies.


Tracey said...

For sure my Food chopper and my serated bread knife. Love it!! Great question and really got me thinking what I use every day.. My cast iron pan..I use it every day!

Slices of Beauty... said...

My hubby loves our rice cooker and the smoothie-maker to bits, gets him busy while I lounge!

hildalove said...

I agree with the recipes collection and a good basic cookbook. You know how many times I have searched frantically through cookbooks just to find a basic chocolate chip cookie recipe or tuna casserole?

Coffee Catholic said...

A pressure cooker! Cooks food in 1/3 the time with much less water so the food doesn't boil and thus lose tons of nutrients ~ and it meats are cooked you end up with a rich broth.

Good pressure cookers are pricey yes, but you get what you pay for.

I'm going to buy a medium sized one from Marmeedear.com

God bless!

:o) mg said...

A good sized nonstick skillet and spatula they make which is safe for teflon.

:o) mg said...

oh, and you KNOW I'd be going around to thrift stores looking for good kitchen finds!

Deb said...

Well, it depends on what you consider "ridiculously expensive". I cannot live without my Kitchen Aid stand mixer, but for something a little more reasonable, I have a good set of OXO knives that my son gave me for Christmas one year and I love them! Another staple is a good food processor. HTH

Meghan said...

High quality pots and pans that will last a lifetime. You can sometimes find All-Clad pans at discount stores like Marshalls or TJ Maxx for significant discounts. They're still expensive, but I look at it like it's an investment; you're not going to need to buy a new pan every couple of years.

Target sells Calphalon pots and pans now which is another wonderful brand of cookware. You could also look into getting him some cast iron, which is so versatile and durable. I have several pieces of inherited cast iron (which demonstrates how long lasting it is!) but you can also find it at garage sales very inexpensively.

Owie T. said...

i believe that the heart of kitchen tools is knife,so i suggest to always have a good set of knives. :)

khenet said...

yeah, me too. i also love my set of knives.