Here is a list of things that are compulsory in a kitchen and how to be the kitchen boss. The more time I spend in the kitchen cooking and baking, the more important the tools I have become. Over time I have definitely learned what is not as much as a necessity as other things. For example, having an Avocado to cut and smash your avocado is not nearly as important as the plastic half that keeps it fresh and stops it from browning.
I have also found myself swimming in kitchen items and not using many of them because they are packed. Leaving me to be crafty about what tools I do have that can do the same thing. Here is a round-up of tools that I have found to be super important in the kitchen when cooking and baking. Set up these compulsory kitchen tools and be the kitchen boss.
Things That Are Compulsory In a Kitchen
Bread and biscuits are the main purposes of a pastry scraper but I love using it for cooking purposes. It can be great for scooping up veggies that you have diced. But once I got a good set of knives and learned that it was bad for the blade I stopped scrapping with the side of the knife. I also find this great when you are baking to scrape things up and cut them up since pastry type doughs can be tough. A compulsory asset in a kitchen; I should say.
2. Measuring Cups & Spoons (compulsory kitchen tool)
Measuring cups and spoons are so important when it comes to cooking and baking. Trying to make breads or cookies without exact measurements is a nightmare when you are still learning! I am also learning about how when you scoop things like flour with them, you are most likely getting an inaccurate amount of ingredient since it packs it into the cup!
3. Nested Mixing Bowls
These are my all-time favourite mixing bowls. The pots have a high rim and have a rubber bottom which stops them from sliding all over your counter and this makes them special. I find these have worked better than any bowls I have tried. You absolutely do not need to rush out and buy these, but I would definitely look for bowls that are high rimmed and have a rubber coating on the bottom!
4. Another Compulsory Tool is a Cookbook Stand
A couple of weeks ago I was wandering around Crate and Barrel and stumbled across this cookbook stand and instantly fell in love. Even though I’ve been searching for a cookbook stand for months, I never did found the one I liked. What sold me on this stand was the plastic cover and also that it flattens out when you are not using it. Not only does it keep your cookbook from closing on you when you’re using it, but it also protects it from any food that may inadvertently end up on the pages.
Chef’s Knife: Use This Compulsory Kitchen Tool And Be the Kitchen Boss
A boss should know the proper equipment and how to use it. There are few tools in the kitchen that are absolutely necessary, and though an unusually expensive chef’s knife may not be essential, a high-quality blade will make your life a lot easier. A knife is to a chef what a bike is to cyclists or a speedo is to the swimmer. It is one of the most versatile pieces of equipment you will have in the kitchen. Quite literally, it slices and dices, flip it sideways to mash a piece of garlic or use the sharp tip to cut into a melon. With a good knife, you can peel fruit and trim meat, you can slice veggies or even carve a holiday beast.
As with most compulsory kitchen equipment, to a certain extent, you get what you pay for.
A high-quality knife from a reputable brand like Global or Mac will have a finer edge and keep that edge longer. There are certain factors that affect the price of a knife that has little to no impact on its functionality, like the material of its handle and others that have a very real impact, like the material and shape of the blade. There are a number of materials available on the market, like ceramic and titanium, but most chefs prefer to stay with the classic, tried and true, stainless steel.
As is often the case when purchasing a top of the line bike, after a certain price point, it really becomes a matter of personal preference. Is a six thousand dollar carbon frame really going to be that much faster than a two thousand dollar frame…if it makes you feel better, then sure. So long as you find a knife that keeps its edge, slices well, and feels good in your hand, that’s all you really need. Since you will probably not be slicing commercial cuts of meat or quantities of veggies, it is unlikely you will need a thirteen-inch blade. But the leverage afforded from a good eight or ten in the blade in the home kitchen will make removing the spine from a chicken-like cutting through butter.
Two knives that we particularly like are the 10-inch Global chef’s knife and the 8 inches Masahiro Chef’s Knife. Both are high-quality blades, though the Shun has a bit more of an artisan feel, with its wooden handle, and the Global a bit more industrial, down and dirty feel. Both have a very simple, straight-forward design and handle well.
A few words of caution:
knives are sharp. Proper technique and full attention are required to ensure you do not take a few millimetres off your thumb every now and then (and even still, there are no guarantees). Also, proper care is essential to maintaining a good knife. It does not belong in the dishwasher, banging around with your everyday silver–there is no quicker way to ruin a blade. If you do not have a proper block in which to store your knives, and will likely keep them floating around a drawer with other utensils, the least you should do is keep the blade covered in a sheath or plastic blade saver.
A few quick swipes over a honing stick will keep your blade clean on a day to day basis and maintain that edge. Professionally sharpening it once a year will be a good idea but it depends on how you use it.
The experience of cutting a ripe tomato with a quality knife will rock your world and your eyes opened. It’s like that moment you throw your leg over a new rig and ride down the block for the first time if you had only known what you were missing out on before.
With this list of compulsory kitchen tool, you can try out various types of cooking styles and add more fun to cooking.