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I would say that I can call myself an avid cook, and as such I tend to collect a lot of things in my kitchen. We are at a point where I have a 3 tier shelf in the garage to keep some of those kitchen gadgets and tools that I don’t use very often, but that I will not part ways with, because even if it’s once or twice a year I find a good use for them. At least now we know, that our next house better have a bigger kitchen!
The point of kitchen gadgets & kitchen tools is to make our cooking adventures easier. I have from a panini maker, a garlic press, a kitchen torch, to a smoking gun, and everything in between. When I am asked what are the tools that I can’t live without, I have to think really hard. Life is simple though, and I could definitely still make amazing meals as long as I have a great cutting board, a sharp knife, a pan, and some heat. Those are all pretty basic, so I decided to narrow my needs and share with you my top 3 kitchen gadgets. I couldn’t just stop there so I am also sharing 3 things that for me are not necessary, but are nice to have. And lastly some pieces that I day dream about when I picture my dream kitchen, so keep reading to find out.
Top 3 Kitchen Gadgets:
These 3 are the ones that probably get the most use, which means my cooking adventures would be a lot harder without them.
If you eat greens as often as we do, you need to have one. I use the bowl to soak all my leafy green and herbs with cold water and a splash of vinegar for few minutes, then I drain them, put them in the basket and spin away to get all the excess water out before I store them in my fridge. When I am ready to make a salad, a stir fry, or a frittata my greens are ready to go.
I have the classic kitchen aid stand mixer, it is a gem! I can make cookies, cakes, bread, pasta dough, meringue (you name it), in minutes thanks to this wonderful artifact. I also have a couple of the attachments so I can grind my own meat, or corn. LOVE IT!
My favorite is the enamel cast iron, there are different brands that make them, I have a couple of sizes. It can stand a really high heat, it doesn’t stick, and makes perfect sear. I use it for braising, stews, chilies, sauces, deep frying. One of my absolute favorite features about this pot is that it goes from the stove top into the oven and straight to the table.
Not must-haves, but make my life easier (or more beautiful!)
I don’t need the following 3 gadgets, but I am glad I have them.
Would I survive in my kitchen without a mandolin slicer? Sure, I can use my knife to slice, but when I am looking for perfectly thin consistent slices my mandolin does a beautiful job. Not to mention that if you are slicing a ton of food, it reduces your cutting time, and it gives precision in every slice. BE CAREFUL though, they are very sharp! Here I found this recent article with a good run down on the best ones out there.
My mom has used a classic pressure cooker for as long as I remember. I had never had one in my kitchen until few months ago. This was a Christmas present and I absolutely love it. It’s electric and it cooks really quick. I was a bit skeptical at first but I have made few of my favorite dishes cutting the time in less than half. I spent about 30 minutes on the phone with my mom taking notes of all the things she makes in the pressure cooker. I have made beans, onion soup, chicken & rice, soups, stocks, and meatballs. For my busy life style, this one is definitely nice to have, even if I could get away without.
This little handmade tool, is not a need at all. For me it just holds a special place in my heart and I feel very lucky every time I use it. I bought it while visiting the Venezuelan Andes many many years ago (that’s why is so beat up). It is very typical of that region, it’s used all over Venezuela to serve rice. My kids don’t even want to eat their rice unless it is shaped in this mold. This one is a piece from my country that reminds me who I am.
Well we all have dreams, some are bigger than others, right?. When I find myself retracting my thoughts from some super long day of work and/or meetings, you can find me daydreaming about the perfect kitchen. Of course I love to dream that I have a pantry Martha Stewart style, or Ina Garten’s garden. Sometimes I just like to dream that I am able to upgrade to better appliances. So here are the top 2 upgrades I dream for my own kitchen.
I wish sometimes I could go back 13 years and say no to an electric stove, what was I thinking? I can’t wait until the day I can switch to gas burners and this range is absolutely dreamy, look at the French doors oven! Beyond the looks, all the features and powerful burners, makes this stove my most desired dream right now. I can see myself making some amazing recipes, entertaining, and just preparing great quality meals for my family. This one would be my personal choice, but they certainly have plenty of choices for everyone’s personal styles and needs. Love them all!
I’ve been dreaming of getting one of these powerful blenders for a while. I’ve been holding on buying something else because this is the one I keep dreaming about. I would probably use this almost daily to make smoothies, juices, soups, sauces, margaritas, oh! I can already see my life becoming so much more enjoyable!
Do you have your own kitchen dreams? Are they about a small appliance you want to add, or a full kitchen remodeling? Please share your dreams in the comments. Let’s dream together