Tools of the Trade

I am not a gourmet cook, nor do I have a gourmet kitchen stocked full of high-end cooking tools and utensils. Simply, I am a homemaker with my own set of Tools of the Trade. I have never been one to have a counter top full of appliances staring me in the face when I walk into the kitchen, less is more in my opinion.  Yes, I am a minimalist; please don't hold that against me.
Tools of the Trade

The Tools of the Trade

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My husband taught a Photography Workshop for 4H back in February. During a conversation, an adult said something about the more expensive the camera the better the photo. This kills my husband every time he hears this statement. He always, response with "It's not the camera, it is the person using the camera". He made that response and asked the question, "Who is your favorite famous chef or cook?", quickly the lady said, "Julia Childs".  My husband responded with another question that ended the you have to have a more expensive camera to have better pictures. I guess you're probably wondering what that question was... "When Julia Childs was cooking, did her masterpieces come from her kitchen utensils or from her wisdom"? It's all about the wisdom and knowledge and not how expensive the tools are.

While I have some really nice pieces in the kitchen, I do have some that I wish were never bought, like a particular set of knives that were given to me at Christmas one year. Don't get me wrong, they are good heavy-duty knives, but the blades are something else, because I have to sharpen them every time I use them. EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. My favorite knives are my Victorinox knives. I've had these for three years and I've only sharpened the paring knife two times.

Of course, my most favorite tools of all time are my Lodge cast iron skillets and loaf pans. Those little loaf pans, make the best homemade bread in the world. I would not trade them for anything! I cook just about everything in my cast iron except for high acid foods like spaghetti sauce for that I use my stainless steel WearEver pans.

Would you believe it took me 15 years to actually decide on getting pizza pans. I know! In the past I always made our homemade pizza in two jelly roll pans, my large cast iron skillet and/or my cast iron griddle.  After looking through a sale ad last Thanksgiving, I decided I wanted a set of Airbake pizza pans. Boy, was I glad to find a set of these little beauties under the Christmas tree last year. You know what, I even found a set of cookie pans under the tree as well. No more cookies that stick to the pan.

I use bamboo utensils when cooking. They are easier on the cast iron and are a breeze to clean. A couple of times a year  I give them a coating of coconut oil to keep them healthy.  I stumbled across OXO when looking for tongs. I bought silicone tipped tongs to use on my George Foreman grill and have had these for several years. I have nothing but good things to say about them, the tips hold up to hot oil when frying chicken. I also love my Oxo whisk, its shape has held up and there's not been any rusting after being washed.

I have a KitchenAid mixer that is on its last leg. But as long as it is still mixing my doughs, I'm not going to retire it. My husband bought me a Cuisinart food processor and blender combo for my birthday. I LOVE it! I love having one appliance that is interchangeable.

When purchasing items for use in the kitchen, quality is a factor that needs to be considered. Yes, quality does cost a little more in the beginning, but MOST quality items last longer and have better warranties on them. There is no sense in spending thousands of dollars on cookware and utensils, when there are quality products on the market that cost a lot less.  Another thing to consider, buy your pieces one at a time. I started with my knives and moved on to some of the more expensive tools. It's easier to buy a piece here and a piece there to keep from breaking the bank.

What are some of your favorite Tools of the Trade? I'd love to hear about them; leave a comment, tweet me, or visit me on Facebook.

1 comment

  1. I am not a cook. I can cook I just don't really enjoy it. But what I do love is creating art. I am a passionate crafter and I create all kinds of things. I sew, paint, make baby items, wedding gifts and Cards. Tools only help one who is gifted but they don't create. It is the same as cooking. Sanford is right. You can give me an expensive camera but don't expect me to take a great picture with it. I am not a photographer. You can give me an expensive set of cookware but don't expect a great meal out of it. Its the talent of the person behind the machinery. A good sewing machine is not going to create a great item but it helps someone who can sew. Expensive tools are just that tools to help the already gifted. It sounds like you are a great cook. I kind of envy you because I WISH I liked to cook. Its just not my thing.

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