Every cook needs her tools to create a culinary masterpiece or even a simple, mouth-watering dinner, dessert, or side dish. Having the right tools for the job not only helps you get done faster, but it wards off the frustration of not having the right tool and the time wasted by having to hunt up an alternative solution. So, ladies, let’s make sure our kitchens are stocked, equipped, and ready to roll. In addition, kitchen utensils are the perfect gift for college students, graduates outfitting a first apartment, or couples embarking on their new married life; they may have lots of love, but you can’t cook with that!
#1 – Mixing Bowls
Mixing bowls are an indispensable kitchen item. Many, if not most, recipes will require a mixing bowl or two. It would not be amiss to have more than one set either. Look for bowls in graduating sizes that nest one within the other to save storage space. Choose bowls that are durable. This is one investment you will not regret; besides, purchasing cheap bowls only to have to replace them is not budget conscious. Another helpful feature is to purchase bowls that can double as serving bowls (less dishes to wash) and come with lids to allow your food to go from the table straight to into the fridge.
#2 – Measuring Cups & Spoons
Every kitchen needs measuring cups and spoons. These are also a basic necessity, again, more than one is a good choice. Ninety-nine percent of all recipes involve at least one ingredient (or more) that must be measured. Look for tempered glass measuring cups which can go in the microwave or be used to measure hot liquids, and a pour spout for ease of use. For measuring spoons, choose ones made out of metal, like stainless steel, for durability, and ones that can be removed from the connecting ring.
#3 – Colander/Strainer
A colander is instrumental, not only for draining pasta, although it is ideal for this application, in allowing you to wash things such as potatoes, greens and drain cooked vegetables. These come in metal and plastic, but for durability, metal is the way to go.
#4 – Baking Sheets
At least two or more baking sheets are a must have, and they are definitely for more than cookies. Recipes that require baking like oven fried chicken or pork chops, fish, potatoes, and vegetables can all be done on a baking sheet. Use them to cook biscuits, pumpkin seeds, holiday treats, and tenderloin. They also can be used under other baking dishes to catch drips so you don’t have to clean your oven as much, and under crock pots and electric griddles to also catch drips.
#5 – Oven Mitts
Oven mitts and hot mats are another must-have for the kitchen. Once your dishes are ready to come out of the oven you need oven mitts to safely remove your hot baking sheet or casserole dish. Using a dish towel is definitely not the best option. It gives you less heat protection and can allow spills. Oven mitts are safer and more stable, and hot mats/pot holders double as trivets to protect your counters and tables.
Of course, you need much more than this to set up your own kitchen from scratch, but these are a great start and you will be glad to have each and every one.
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