Friday, April 27, 2018 • Holidays
Oftentimes, the key to preparing a wonderful meal is the tools that you use. Wouldn’t it be wonderful to save time in the kitchen, while also adding a little flare and precision to each of your dishes? It’s time to take an audit of all the outdated utensils you’ve been working with the past several years, and bring some new, fresh talent into your kitchen! Incorporate more efficient, durable tools into your kitchen today and you’ll be sure to thank yourself later when your modern country kitchen is fully stocked.
Cast Iron Pans
A great quality cast iron pan is an absolute essential in the farmhouse kitchen. They can be used in a variety of settings, from your kitchen stove top to an outdoor grill or campfire. Although most cast irons do require you to season them before use, they’re otherwise very low maintenance to maintain. In fact, even if they become rusty over time, they can be sanded down, re-seasoned again and ready for cooking in no time!
What Can It Be Used For?
• Various meats from steaks and hamburgers
• Simple breakfast foods, like bacon, eggs, and sausages
KitchenAid® Stand Mixer
The KitchenAid® Stand Mixer has become a signature tool for the serious (or at least semi-serious) cook. These mixers are designed to operate with a huge variety of cooking and baking attachments that allow you to prepare anything you set your mind to, and master multiple techniques.
• Mixing dough
• Whipping meringue and many, many other dishes.
Every baker needs a great dough scraper! If you’re frequently working with pastry doughs or soft breads, this tool will make your life significantly easier in the kitchen. Most dough scrapers have rounded handles and rectangular blades which allows you to effortlessly loft and turn the dough.
• Bread and pastry dough
• Easily scraping flour off your work area
Boar’s Bristle Pastry Brushes
These brushes are a wonderful way to achieve precision as you prep food, while also offering durability. Although some chefs prefer to use the synthetic or silicone bristle brushes, these often withstand heat more efficiently. Be sure to research a high-quality brand to ensure your brush will last for years to come.
• Brushing melted butter
• Egg washes
Having a variety of metal scoops allows you to become more efficient in the kitchen; it’s as simple as that! According to the Pioneer Woman, they also "speed along lots of repetitive cooking tasks (making meatballs, etc.) and ensure consistent measurements and sizes." They also look adorable stored in large jars of beans, coffee, or sugar!
• Small scoops: meatballs, cookie dough and melon balls
• Larger scoops: muffin batter, meat for sliders, or cupcake batter
Fine Mesh Strainers
Never underestimate the power of a good strainer. There are endless uses for this kitchen tool, from straining wet ingredients slowly into your recipe, or carefully sifting your dry ingredients. Do your research before buying a strainer, to ensure you buy one that has two layers of mesh for durability, and a good quality handle.
• Straining a lime or lemon
• Sifting dry ingredients
• Sprinkling herbs or cooking accents, like cocoa or powdered sugar, onto a dish
Aluminum Pie Pans
Although some bakers prefer glass pie pans, nothing says "tradition" than an aluminum pie pan. There are numerous disposable and reusable options to choose from. When opting for a
reusable version, it’s probably a better idea to purchase them in person rather than online because they’re super heavy and shipping can become expensive quickly!
• Dessert pies
• Pot pies
Deluxe Chef’s Knife
A good knife is simply essential in the kitchen! Choose from one of the high-quality knife brands that are famous for their quality, like Wustof or Henckels as a great starting point. Then decide what you’ll make the most use of: a paring knife, a Santoku knife, or perhaps a classic utility knife. Once you have your perfect knife in hard, you’ll be able to chop, dice, slice, and julienne any of your favorite recipes like the pros. Take special care to wash your knives by hand – both the handles and the blades can become compromised in the dishwasher.
• Dicing veggies
• Slicing meats
• Chopping a variety of ingredients
A flat whisk has a unique shoehorn-like shape that allows it to get into the corners and sides of pans for more efficient stirring when making sauces and gravies, according to Cooks Illustrated. When you press them against the surface of a skillet or pot, they instantly flatten, which makes cleaning your dirty pans incredibly easy! They’re almost guaranteed to work better than your old wooden spoon.
• Creating sauces
• Making gravies
Now that you’ve explored some of the time-saving tools above, we hope you’ll find a new appreciation and love for cooking. Whether it means less time preparing your meals, or simply a new cooking technique, an efficient tool can change your country kitchen routine for the better. Happy cooking!
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