Your kitchen doesn’t need a lot of items, it just needs the right pieces that will help you prep and cook with ease. With all of the gadgets, tools, and equipment out there it can be easy to stock your kitchen, but whether or not it’s with the right items can be another story. Clean out the clutter and stick to high quality essentials with these top 5 kitchen tools that are a must-have for any modern cook:
- Your hands
There’s no other tool that you’ll use more in your kitchen than your own two hands. Don’t be afraid of making a mess, rolling up your sleeves, and getting a little dirty. Using your hands lets you feel the food and prepare your meals with care. Your hands allow you experience to what your food feels like and using them to prep your dishes will make your cooking more authentic.
So much time in the kitchen is spent on prep work like chopping and slicing food before it can be cooked. You don’t have to have the fanciest knives (although Japanese steel is the ideal choice), but they do need to be sharp. Dull knives will make your food prep take longer, make it more likely that you’ll cut yourself, and require more effort to use efficiently. Don’t rely on one knife to do it all – instead, make sure you’re set up with different knives for various purposes. Every well-equipped kitchen needs a chef’s knife for chopping, a serrated bread knife, and a paring knife for slicing. These three are all you’ll need to do everything in your kitchen without buying a drawer full of knives that you’ll never use.
- Immersion hand blender
This handy little tool is a lifesaver for when it comes to pureeing everything from soups to sauces to dressings. An immersion blender is compact and doesn’t take up a lot of room, is easy to clean, and can be used in a variety of ways within your kitchen. A handheld blender lets you puree soups right in the pot without using a big blender, making it a great choice for kitchens with limited space.
Also known as a food rasp, a microplane is a handheld gadget that was originally designed for woodworking but is now an indispensable kitchen tool. Use a microplane for mincing garlic, grating ginger, zesting lemons, shredding cheese, shaving chocolate, and more. The blades are razor sharp and can finely slice even the hardest cheeses or vegetables. There are lots of sizes and types of blades, so try a few different kinds to find your favorite and to make sure you’ve got all of your kitchen needs covered.
- Cutting board
Having a great cutting surface can make a big difference in your efficiency in the kitchen. A quality cutting board can make your knives last longer and will keep your food tasting fresh. Never cut on any surface unless it’s a wood or plastic cutting board. Plastic cutting boards are affordable but will dull your knives quickly. Wood cutting boards are sturdy and hard-working but can absorb flavors and odors from your food. The best option is a wooden composite board, like Epicurean brand boards. They are kind to your knives, won’t get worn out, and don’t transfer smells or hang on to flavors, so you’ll never get stuck having your fruit pick up a garlic taste from your cutting board. These boards are easy to clean and come in several sizes for all of your kitchen needs. Ideally, you’ll use one side of the board for fruit, the other side for garlic and onions, and have another separate board for raw meats.
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