Optimize Your Cooking With the Proper Equipment
Dream of being a world-class chef, or simply want to cook better at home? Having the proper equipment is the best way to get started. Would you use a screwdriver to paint a wall? Of course not, you would use a paint brush, the tool actually designed for the job.
There are thousands of unique kitchen appliances and accessories, but for the best in food preparation, ensure you have the right one for each job. Along with having the right cooking equipment is having the right utensils for displaying your meals. For example, restaurant silverware adds a certain level of elegance to your meal as well as your environment.
Some of the most basic, yet important items you will need in the kitchen are as follows:
Saucepans, pots, and frying/sautéing pans: Ensure you are using not only the most appropriately sized pan, but also the best suited pan. In general, three sizes of frying pans are recommended as the minimum, an 8″, a 10″, and a 12″. Saucepans are also needed, and three sizes around 2 quarts, 3 quarts, and 5 quarts, as well as a 10 quart pot should meet most of your needs. Other sizes for pots and pans are available for more specific needs.
Roasting : baking pans and sheets: Essential for cooking anything inside an oven, you can find dozens of sizes online. Two metal or glass pans in sizes of 9×9″, 9×13″, and a 10×15″ metal sheet will hold just about anything. Muffin tins and cake pans are also great tools for baking.
Knives : Did you know there are dozens of companies whose only purpose is to make and sell knives? A good knife isn’t only about the quality of the blade, but also by how well you care for it. Make sure you take the time to learn how t care and sharpen your knives. A large set of knives of varying sizes is not necessary to cooking well; a few blades will do. Look for an 8″ chef’s knife, a 5″ or 6″ serrated knife, and a small 3″ paring knife.
Spoons and whisks : Wooden spoons are a must for any kitchen. Slotted spoons, ladles, and whisks are very important as well. A couple different sizes should be available at any time.
Colanders/strainers : Absolutely necessary for draining pasta and vegetables, colanders come in steel and plastic. A five quart size is recommended.
Mixing bowls: Perhaps one of the most underrated utensils, mixing bowls can be used to help prepare almost any dish. Several sizes varying from one up to eight quarts are recommended.
Measuring cups/spoons: Indispensable tools, allowing you to follow any recipe.
Cutting boards Have at least two on hand, these are required for cutting anything without damaging both knives and counter-tops. They come in various sizes, choose the one most appropriate for the job at hand.
Food processor: Invaluable to any chef, they can be used every time you are in the kitchen. Make sure to get one with a large capacity and a strong motor for maximum potential.
Blender/ immersion blender: Great for making sauces, dressings, and beverages. Immersion blenders are used for blending in the container ingredients are being prepared in, fantastic for quick blending without transferring the contents.
These are all standard in kitchens, but what if you need something else?