SF Bay Area
Food and drink that has us seeing gold
There are so many kitchen tools out there that promise to simplify your cooking and cut your prep time in half. While many of them may do what they advertise, the majority of these tools end up cluttering your shelves and drawers. Avocado slicers, yolk separators, and pineapple corers to name a few. If you find these useful and have the storage space, go for it. But in my experience, there are very few kitchen gadgets that are worth it.
With that being said, I wanted to share my 3 favorite tools that I use in the kitchen on a regular basis. Keep in mind everybody’s cooking needs are different and what works for some, may not work for others.
Mandolins are perfect for when you want to thinly slice a whole bunch of vegetables and want to ensure that all your cuts are uniform. While you can technically get the exact same results with a good knife, you can’t beat the speed and perfect uniformity you get from a mandolin.
For me, it’s all about consistency. If you’re making caramelized onions for example, you want every onion to be the same size so they all cook evenly. If some onions are thinner than others, the thinner ones will burn before the thicker ones are fully cooked.
Just about everything. No really. You can cook almost anything in a cast iron skillet and get great results. Steaks, burgers, eggs, pancakes, and even pies. There is nothing that a good piece of cast iron can’t handle.
One of things that makes cast iron such an ideal cooking material is its ability to evenly retain heat. It get’s hot enough to achieve the perfect crust on a steak, or the perfect char on a burger. Seasoning your pan also creates a natural non-stick coating necessary for those perfectly fried eggs.
Any baker knows that a scale is an essential component to achieving good results. It is very difficult if not impossible to accurately measure certain ingredients. This is where scales come in handy. I also like to use my scale to evenly divide up ground beef for burgers.
Like I said, many ingredients are very difficult to accurately measure. Take butter for example. It’s hard to say how much ½ cup of butter is but it is pretty easy to say how much 50 grams of butter is. Getting good results in baking is all about precision and without a scale you aren’t going to get much of it. So the next time you’re following a recipe for cinnamon buns, grab yourself a scale and rest assured that they will come out perfectly.
So, what are your essential cooking tools?