Friday, February 8, 2008


  • Buying: Buy quality items. Take your time. Set aside $10 here, and $10 there. Save your pennies and use your Bed, Bath and Beyond coupons. Cook with friends and watch what they use.
  • Food Processor: Just do it. I truly thought I didn't need this appliance. I bought Cuisinart. It is the most used appliance in my kitchen. Perfect cuts, grates, chops, dices and purees. Zip, zip, done. I also have a Cuisinart coffee maker - love that too.
  • Wooden Spoons: I thought my plastic wooden-spoon-shaped spoons were just fine. Get the wooden spoons. They keep the stuff off the bottom of the pan better, they bring up the scrapings into the food for flavor, they don't scratch your cookware, they clean up easy. Oil them with olive oil now and again. Don't soak them.
  • Prep Cups: Little teeny clear glass bowls. I measure out my spices, salts, teensies of this and that into them. It makes everything ready to assemble. Easy clean up. I have found having about 10 or so of them is plenty - about $1 each.
  • Custard Cups: Same use as above, only on a larger scale. I like having eight of these. About $5 for four.
  • Glass Mixing Bowls: I prefer glass, Pyrex. They make 3 pc. sets for about $10. I added a few middle sizes and doubled a couple of sizes I found I used multiple times in a single recipe.
  • Bakeware: Much of my bakeware is Pampered Chef stoneware. It cooks better the older and darker it gets.
  • Springform Pan: The new "bunt" pan I think!
  • Zester: I prefer the Microplane brand. Use it on your citris fruits, chocolate, ginger, etc.
  • Garlic Press: Zyliss is my preferred brand. I use this practically every other day. We use garlic in everything. You don't need to fully peel the garlic before you use it AND it cleans up fast!
  • Kitchen Shears: Keep two pairs in the kitchen. If you've just snipped the chicken or the pork, you can carry on with the herbs without stopping to wash them.
  • Wire Wisks: Buy sturdy wisks in a few sizes. Big ones for the batter bowls, small ones to do eggs in a smaller bowl. Again, having 3-4 makes it easy to do a meal/recipe without having to stop and wash.
  • Dry Measure Measuring Cups and Spoons: I prefer heavy metal measuring cups. They can be used to melt chocolate or shortening on the stove. The heavy metal speaks to quality. The same with my measuring spoons being metal. My kitchen sports a dash, pinch and smidgen set too for those old-timey recipes. I keep all three in a bin in the cupboard. I don't have to dig through the utensil drawer to find them.
  • Liquid Measuring Cups: Pyrex, hands down. I have three that cover just about anything I need to make. 1 cup, 2 cup and 4 cup. Easy to use, see, heat, mix, clean, etc.
  • Recipe Book Holder: Props your recipes up whether they are in books, plastic coated printouts or magazines. It keeps the recipes accessible and free from the spilling crud.
  • Silicone Cooking Bands: Heat resistant up to 600 degrees Farenheit. Use in place of butcher twine - no tying - stretch to fit. Oven, rotisserie and deep fyer safe. They clean up easy.

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