Guests in my kitchen often comment on my kitchen tools. They are surprised because they are not aware of the great tools that are available to make cooking easier. In continuation of the blog that I posted in January "Kitchen Tools Part 1", here are additional kitchen tools that I recommend...
My Bamboo Cutting Board is not only a great cutting board it is also a beautiful decorative piece that compliments my kitchen. I own an 18x24x2.25 inch size that sits next to my kitchen sink where I do most of my chopping. The high quality large cutting surface gives me plenty of room to work on. I solely use it for vegetable and fruit chopping. It is much easier to slice and cut on than any other cutting board surface that I have tried. The hard bamboo surface doesn't need the care that most wooden boards require; it generates fewer nicks and slices that can harbor bacteria. I recommend selecting a bamboo cutting board in a size that fits your kitchen counter and provides enough room to properly cut and chop your portions. The large size that I have requires a little muscle work to lift when cleaning, however it is worth it because it makes chopping fun and gives me all of the space I need. Along with the daily cleaning of the board, I also maintain its beauty by using mineral oil to keep it moisturized.
The Kitchen-Aid Stand Mixer has been around for generations. I own the Professional 600. It makes baking easier and more fun. I use it for pancakes, baking goods, whipped creams, frosting's and more. There are many available attachments that you can purchase to use with this legendary machine. I own the food grinder attachment that I use to grind meat, and recently purchased the 3-piece pasta roller and cutter set which I am excited to use to make my own homemade pasta! The Kitchen-Aid Stand Mixer is available in many fun colors to compliment your kitchen. I highly recommend that you own one, it will last a lifetime!
The Food Processor is another kitchen tool that has been around for years and is the tool that I rely on for making dips, pesto's, marinades, breadcrumbs, shredding vegetables, and kneading dough. I own the Kitchen Aid 11-Cup Processor. The interchangeable blades and disk attachments can look intimidating but I can assure you that they are easy to use and will make preparation much easier in the kitchen.
I love making soups and sauces from scratch. The tool that makes it easy is my Hand Blender. I have the Cuisinart 200-watt and it works great. It is much more time efficient than using a blender, you simply place the hand blender in the pot and puree soups and sauces in minutes. The hand blender is affordable, easy to use and clean.
Another great kitchen tool that I recommend is a Salad Spinner. It is a low cost tool that will dry your lettuce greens so that you can enjoy a more crisp salad with less hassle in minutes. There are a few different types out there that are available. The one I own has an easy 1-handed pump mechanism with a brake button. To use, fill the basket with the washed salad greens, close the lid and press the pump-knob down several times to spin the salad. The brake comes in handy to quickly stop the basket. You will appreciate this great tool and will never have to manually dry your lettuce again!
A few smaller kitchen tools that I would like to mention are the following...
Microplane Handheld Zester/Grater - This tool is great for zesting citrus fruits, grating hard cheeses and spices such as nutmeg.
Cheese Slicer - There are many cheese slicers to choose from that work great for slicing hard cheeses. With this tool you can slice perfect cheese slices .This tool is a must and will make slicing cheese effortless.
Potato Masher - A must for mashing potatoes quickly and efficiently. I also use it to mash bananas for baking, and avocados for a smooth creamy guacamole.
You can find my recommended kitchen tools online and at various local kitchen supply stores. Be sure to shop smart to get the best priced deals. If you are a local San Diegan I recommend shopping at Great News Discount Cooking Store and Cooking School in Pacific Beach. They sell just about everything that you need for your kitchen. Their prices are competitive and the staff is helpful and informative.
Great News Discount Store and Cooking School
1788 Garnet Avenue
San Diego, CA. 92019