Monday, January 11, 2010

These are a few of my favorite things...

Everyone has things in their kitchen that they can't live with out. These are the things that make me love being in my kitchen.

I bake a lot so these wide mouth glass jars that each hold 10 pounds of flour or sugar are perfect. I won't tell you how often I refill my sugar jar because it's probably more often than most people have to buy sugar.

Yes, it's just a notebook but it's an indispensable tool for keeping me organized. I keep it on my kitchen counter so I can jot down ingredients or make to do lists as I go and when I leave the house I always take it with me.

My long coveted KitchenAid mixer. I went through FIVE hand mixers in 4 years. I wanted a KitchenAid but I couldn't see committing to spending that much money. I'm frugal. Sort of. But thanks to a deep Black Friday discount, this long coveted mixer is mine. And I love it. Tip: I keep mine on top of a folded up dish towel so when I want to use it I slide it on the counter instead of trying to pick it up, it weighs a lot and it's cumbersome to move.

My food processor. I had one many years ago and I never used it. So I sold it. At a garage sale. For practically nothing. Luckily, the same person who got me the sold food processor took pity on me and several years later got me another one for my birthday. This time I got smart and instead of storing the food processor away in a cabinet I leave it right on my counter. Suddenly I can't live without it. I use it at least twice a week, often more. It's true what they say- location, location, location!

My cookbook collection. Condensed through the years. I try to be very careful with the books I buy now. It's just as easy to get a recipe off the internet and many times I do just that, but there is just no substitute for a wonderfully edited cookbook with photographs. I'm a sucker for photographs. I'm a book lover so I get a little sentimental over my collection, each book is important to me. In the corner is my recipe binder with clippings and some of my most cherished recipes written in long hand. I hope one day someone appreciates that book.

French press = best coffee ever. In my humble opinion, of course. This is a thermal carafe that I agonized over. I could have saved myself a few bucks and purchased a regular French press because the thermal qualities of this one are a joke. Hot coffee for half an hour max. Still, it's wonderful coffee and I can always buy a thermos.

If you are going to go the French press route, you have to have properly ground beans. A burr grinder will be necessary. This one is highly rated and one of the few under a hundred dollars.

I'm not sure what I did in the kitchen before I found Microplanes. The thinner one is perfect for grating nutmeg (you do buy whole nutmeg, don't you? It's nothing like pre ground nutmeg) and zesting citrus. The larger one is my parmesan grater. That's it. I just grate parmesan with is but I use it at least twice a week and no other tool grates parmesan like the microplane. Mmmm, fluffy parmesan clouds.

How about you? What are your indispensable kitchen tools?


  1. ah, the blessed cuisinart. it's been an object that i've admired from afar for a long time. i agree about the microplane, too--it's a necessity! also, i'm addicted to coffee yet i've never used a french press. i may give it a go and never look back. :)

  2. I love love love my cast iron skillets. But I couldn't live without my dishwasher.

  3. ah, I dream about a Kitchen Aid :) My favorite is our good pots and pans! We use them all the time and don't know where I'd be without them! :)

  4. Kitchen Aids are heavy to move. I put small felt pads that are sticky on one side on the "feet" on the bottom of the machine --slides easily and aren't at all visible!

  5. Oh, those Cuisinart food processor... I've got a tiny one that I use for nuts and such. Personally, I love my blender and bamboo steamer.

  6. Welcome to the Foodie Blogroll!

    I agree with your list! Especially the notebook. I keep mine on top of the fridge and try to write notes about each cook I do and the lessons learned. I've been doing it for over a year and it really comes in handy.

    I want a stand mixer so bad.

  7. Wow, I've felt so identified with all your pictures and comments!!!! I do also have my wide mouth glass jars. Actually I reorganized my so many wide mouth glass jars a couple of weeks ago and now they look beautiful in a privileged place containing all my kinds of flour (all purpose, strong, wheat, corn, rice...) and sugar (white, brown), and now it's very easy when I start baking and flours are all easy to take.
    I also keep a notebook and I spend my days writing and writing shopping lists, things-to-do lists, dishes-to-cook lists...
    It's amazing how we can live so far and food and cooking can make us lifes so similar!
    I've read you live in rural new york, that's one of the places I have to visit. I was in Boston and travelling all over Massachussets 3 years ago and I simply love the atmosphere of New England. The state of new york is one of my places to visit, I have to go.
    I'm happy to have found your blog. Congratulations on it, it looks terrific. I'm going to keep reading your recipes. I have to make some.

  8. I love my rubber spatulas and for my cakes my decorating spatula!
    I like what you are doing on this site keep up the good work!

  9. My Le Creuset dutch oven (through a sale, of course), my biggest longest wooden spoon, and my Zwilling butcher knife. I do think of all of them though, the tool that changed cooking for me forever was a good knife. Now I can't handle cooking at other people's houses who have old, shabby knives like I used to. The good ones spoil you:)

  10. Nice post and Congrats on the foodie blogroll!


  11. @grace I wanted that Cuisinart for a long time. Thank goodness for generous relatives.

    @my50cheeses a cast iron skillet is on my Amazon wish list. I ruined one a long time ago and didn't know that you can save them.

    @Simply Life same for the KitchenAid. I pined for one for years before I broke down and bout one!

    @auntiej great idea! way better than my towel solution.

    @christine I use my food processor for things I used to use my blender for!

    @Chris notes about cooking are a great idea, I used to keep a list of our daily dinners but I've slacked off on it.

    @rosanna I'm glad you like the blog, thanks for your kind words...I will check yours out!

    @chefany rubber spatulas are a must but my list was getting too long! And thanks for the compliment.

    @Miss Meat and Potatoes I hear you about the good knives. We got my partner's parents a set of good knives for Christmas for that very reason.

    @Pam thank you!

  12. Great post! I just started doing a "gadget of the week" post and just posted the first one yesterday on my electric griddle! I really need those wide mouth jars. Mine only hold 5 pounds and I refill them at Least a couple of times a week, but more at times. I also LOVE my Kitchenaids...I have 2 of them!

    By the way, Welcome to the Foodie Blogroll!!

  13. I need a Microplane! I have a grater with multiple sides, but it's difficult to zest things with. And messy.

    My most used kitchen thing? Def my knives. I prob don't used them for the right things, but I use them ALL the time. :)