Archive for the ‘most needed kitchen appliances’ Tag

Appliance Heaven   1 comment

MrsMowryI like to believe that I have a well-stocked kitchen. If you ask my husband, I have an over-stocked kitchen. This is also true.

I am not alone though! My mother-in-law beats me in this category by a landslide. While our cabinets may overflow with some strange foodie gadgets, asking us to throw one away would be akin to asking us to get rid of a beloved pet. We may not make fresh pasta for every meal, but we do make fresh pasta occasionally!

In large part, it is due to her that I have such strong opinions on what every young cook should have in their kitchen, beyond the basics.

1. A Dutch Oven

Every person should have a dutch oven. Whether it’s a Le Cruset or a 50-year-old iron behemoth from Ebay, it’s a must. A Dutch oven is a great way to slow-cook stews, roasts, sauces, you name it. The thickness of the iron helps cook foods evenly and keeps them hot. A Dutch oven also helps keep meat juicy while you cook it. No one can say no to tender meat!

2. A Food Processor

A food processor doesn’t just help make meal prep faster, it’s a great tool for making salsa, bruschetta, humus, etc. While most food processors are tricky to clean, the time you spend cleaning the Cuisinart is less than the time it would have taken to chop all of those vegetables. Think about it.

3. A Great Set of Baking Pans

If you have crappy baking pans, you will have crappy cookies. Throw away your old, burnt, ugly pans and buy new ones! I love Chicago baking pans. They’re not shiny, they’re non-stick, and they’re durable. I got an entire set for our wedding and I use them for nearly every meal. I even got a roasting pan that made my roasted chicken a family favorite! Invest in a set of Chicago pans, they’re not that expensive and so worth it.

4. A Crock Pot

Now, one could argue that a Dutch oven and a crock pot are basically fraternal twins. They’re not. They’re distant cousins that do two very different jobs. A crock pot is a gift to the working people. Prepare a meal in the morning, set it up in the crock pot, leave it alone all day and have something amazing when you get home. A Dutch oven requires time and attention which are great for a Sunday night dinner that you started cooking at 3 pm. A crock pot, however,  requires little effort and has a great pay-off. It’s just so easy.

5. A Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer

KitchenAid MixerI saved the best for last. My baby. The star of my kitchen counter- my Kitchen Aid. I adore this mixer. I’m glad I got married, not only because I love my husband, but because I got this mixer as a wedding shower gift. Velda was the person who gave it to me. Many say that having a stand mixer is a waste of counter space. They say that it just sits around going unused. WRONG. That mixer has helped me make amazing cookies. It’s helped me bake cakes, whisk eggs, beat dough, and make muffins. My Kitchen Aid has helped me smile on a sad day. It made me famous at work for Peanut Butter Cup Cookies. It helped me surprise my husband with tasty treats after a rough day at work. I should probably give it a name. Or take a photo with it. If you want to become a great baker, get a Kitchen Aid. I am a pretty fine baker, if I say so myself and half of the credit goes to my mixer. It’s reliable. It’s sturdy. It has multiple attachments and a flour shield. It has a great warranty and you can buy so many awesome accessories for it! I’ve definitely got my eye on a pasta-making attachment. Needless to say, this mixer is worth it’s hefty price tag.

This is my short list of kitchen tools. I could go on about fancy skillets, garlic presses, rolling pins, or fine knives, but I won’t…at least, not yet. With these five things, you can convince anyone you’re a good cook. Even if you’re not, you can at least prepare decent meals for yourself with very little effort. Incorporating cooking dinners into life can be challenging, especially for the inexperienced. Practice makes perfect! And great tools make everything easier.

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