This is a guest post by Philippa. If you want to guest post on this blog, check out the guidelines here.
One of the most frustrating things about living in a small house or apartment in the city is coping with having a small kitchen, especially if you enjoy cooking. Finding the shelf and worktop space to cook anything more than the most basic of meals can be a challenge. If you’re struggling to make room for pots, pans, blenders, juicers and all the gadgets and gizmos that modern recipes call for, don’t despair. Get creative, and start your kitchen collection with these versatile tools that will cover most recipes:
1. Chef’s knife
Every cook should have at least one good knife. In fact, it’s better to spend more on one or two high quality knives than to buy a block of cheap knives that will go dull quickly. The sharper the knife, the better!
2. Stock pot
A stock pot is brilliant for making stock or broth. Once you get into the habit of cooking, you will use this every day.
3. Cast-iron skillet
Cast-iron cookware will last a lifetime if it is properly cared for, and is a much better investment than modern non-stick cookware.
4. Glass mixing bowl
Don’t waste money on plastic bowls that will get scratched and damaged easily.
5. A good set of electronic scales
Even if you don’t do a lot of baking, scales are useful for weighing meats (to estimate cooking times), and calculating portion sizes.
6. A magnetic knife strip
Save space, and reduce the chance of accidental injury, by hanging knives on the wall instead of in a block on the counter, or in a drawer.
7. A hand-operated whisk
Hand whisks are easy to use, and more reliable than their electronic counterparts.
8. Meat thermometer
Meat thermometers are useful for checking that large joints of meat have been cooked correctly. Invest in a thermometer to avoid food poisoning!
9. Box grater
Save space by using a box grater with different planes on each side, so that you can grate cheeses, citrus zest, carrots and other foods at different thicknesses.
10. Basting brush
You’ll be amazed how many recipes call for you to apply a glaze to your meat or pastry. It’s better to go for a silicone basting brush as the hairs in the haired basting brushes can fall out on to your food.
Things you can live without
The above list includes things that you simply can’t live without. You can’t cut anything without a good knife, and you can’t grate cheese without a grater. However, there are some common kitchen appliances and household tools that you can live without – and some of the items on that list may take you by surprise:
1. Electric kettle
Unless you drink an awful lot of tea or instant coffee, there’s little point in having an electric kettle. Boiling water in a pan, or in the microwave, will suffice for occasional hot water needs.
Why waste space on a toaster when you can make toast on the grill just as easily?
3. Bread makers
Fresh warm bread smells delicious but making bread in the oven isn’t as hard as it sounds, and really, how often do you plan on making bread?
4. Electric tin openers
Handheld tin openers have come a long way recently. You can get ones with comfortable handles and easy-to-turn grips. Why spend a lot of money on an electrical gizmo that will probably break down at the most inopportune moment?
5. Cheese cutting board
Save space and hassle and cut cheese on one of your normal chopping boards instead of using a separate board with cheese wire.
Philippa loves her kitchen and believes that everyone should consider the kitchen the main room in their house. She has decided to share her knowledge about kitchen appliances with other kitchen lovers. She purchased her appliances from the guys at Appliance City.