While we’re not living at home I have the perfect opportunity to clear out our kitchen and take stock of what we have, what we need and what has been sitting there for years unused. Using someone else’s kitchen has also highlighted what tools are essential for me as I don’t necessarily have access to them.
So what are my essential kitchen tools and why?
Spatula’s, Spoons, Scrapers and other Utensils
Wooden Spoon – This gets used the least out of everything. It’s great for cooking liquids as you can really scrape the bottom of the pan to make sure nothing sticks and burns.
Rubber Spatula – This gets used the most as its soft enough to scrape down the sides of a bowl when I’m making a cake yet it’s sturdy enough to use when I’m frying things.
Small Spatula – This is for when I’m making things in the blender as I need something saler to get in there to scrape everything out.
Dough Scraper – This is great for when you’ve got dough stuck to the work top as you can just run your scraper under it all. You can also use it to clear up the work top once you’ve finished and last of all you can use it to cut up your dough so you don’t leave knife marks in the work top.
Nesting Bowls with Measuring Cups and Spoons
For our wedding we were gifted a set of stainless steel Joseph Joseph nesting bowls. Included is a large bowl, a colander, a mesh strainer, a small bowl, a set of measuring cups and a set of measuring spoons. We have a relatively small kitchen so having all this fit into the space of a large bowl is fantastic.
We have a box grater so it has all of the different sizes and options you need for all your grating requirements.
We have a range of them but we don’t need them all. Leo has his favourite which is a small long knife, I have my favourite which is a small stubby knife, other than that all you need is a bread knife and your set.
Our digital scales cover solid measurements like oz, g, kg but also liquids so this cuts out the need for scales and measuring jugs. An all in one compact solution!
We have just the one now. We used to have 3 or 4 but you really don’t need that many. One good board is all you need for all your cutting requirements. We have a Joseph Joseph one that has a lip at one end so that you can chop away and put everything to the back without it falling off.
Pots and pans
This is another thing we used to have loads of but we really didn’t need all of them. We have a small and a large pan with lids, a frying pan and a small omelette pan with a lid. Unless your cooking a roast dinner for 20 people this is plenty.
Jars and Storage Boxes
Jars and storage boxes are great for storing dried foods, left overs or packing lunches in without having to waste clingfilm or kitchen foil. They are washable, reusable and eco friendly.
We have another all in one item with our can opener. It opens cans but it also has a bottle opening bit so it saves us having to have both.
I hate getting things on my hands so I’m constantly wiping my hands on a tea towel as I cook. You can also use them to wrap and drain tofu and to strain things like juices, non dairy milk. I sometimes use them for squeezing the liquid out of vegetables when I’m making rosti. They are easily washed and reused so it saves wasting paper towels.
Blender and Food Processor
One more multi purpose item for us. We have a food processor with a cutter, whisk, grater and slicing attachment, a blender and a coffee grinder (that I use as a mini blender) that all fit on the same base. This saves us a lot of space as we have just the one base on the work top rather than three different machines.
Baking tray with Silicone Sheet
One good tray is all you need for baking anything that isn’t liquid. Yes you could get a loaf tin for bread but it’s not essential as you can bake it free form on a tray.
Springform Cake Tin
Anything you can’t cook on a baking tray can be cooked in a good springform tin. Liquids like cakes or runnier bread like soda bread are contained by the sides.