Setting up your new kitchen can be immensely satisfying once you know which kitchen essentials to bring home first. Else, the sheer range of kitchen tools and equipment available could have you confused. The good news is, you require only a handful of basic tools to start creating delicious home-cooked meals for your family and friends. You can always indulge in more, by and by.
Here are some kitchen essentials that should be on your must-have list:
- Chopping board
Cutting, chopping, dicing and slicing are a necessary part of cooking at home, which is why it pays to have a sturdy chopping board with a stable surface. It’s actually best to have two. Choose a wooden one for fruits, vegetables, bread and cheese. A wooden chopping board also keeps your knives from dulling quickly. Non-porous ones made of plastic or resin are better suited for cutting meat, poultry and seafood, as they don’t absorb juices and are easy to clean.
Ensure you clean your chopping board thoroughly to help them last longer in your kitchen. Also, when buying one, make sure that it will fit in your sink.
- Multi-purpose knife
When you are setting up your kitchen, you don’t need to bring in the whole array of kitchen knives. You must, however, have a durable multi-purpose knife that can handle both produce and meats with equal finesse. A blade with a serrated edge will help slice through a tomato as well as frozen meat. Ensure it is lightweight and well balanced with a comfortable grip.
- Food processor
When it comes to essential kitchen gadgets, a food processor is an excellent choice. A jack of all trades, it is a kitchen appliance that can take all the labour-intensive work off your hands. You can use it to slice and shred vegetables, puree, blend and even make the dough.
Spatulas are indispensable. Bring home at least two sturdy spatulas – a flexible one, and another hard one for cooking vegetables, flipping eggs, burgers and pancakes, transferring baked fish and more. While metal spatulas have their own advantages, ensure you get a silicone one too, for scraping out the sides of your mixing bowl or the food processor, mixing cake batter and so on.
A whisk is a basic kitchen essential that you will find yourself using daily. You could consider getting a whisk set, which provides you with a large and small whisk that you can use according to the quantities of the food you are handling. The small whisk is especially useful in accomplishing small jobs like whisking eggs for your omelette, making a single serving of salad dressing, or frothing the milk in your cup of coffee. Pick a whisk that is ergonomically shaped and fits well in your hand.
Buy a generous, big colander that will accommodate all the pasta you wish to drain, and help you wash fruits and vegetables and strain broths. A metal colander is definitely sturdier than plastic.
- Paring knife
While your large multi-purpose knife will take care of most of your cutting and chopping functions, a small paring knife is excellent for the smaller, more delicate jobs. This knife is perfect for coring, paring, peeling, and trimming vegetables and fruits. It’s also ideal for chopping ginger and garlic. Ensure it fits well in your hand, is lightweight and well balanced.
- Mixing bowls
You can’t do without these in any kitchen. Get multiple sized mixing bowls, preferably in metal or glass, so they don’t retain stains or odours. You can also use glass bowls as serving dishes or for storing leftovers. You will be relying on these for mixing cake batter, pancake batter, making salads, and more.
- Kitchen shears
Some kitchen accessories are extremely useful – like multi-purpose kitchen shears. From cutting herb stems to trimming the fat off meat, and from cutting chicken to opening packaging, this one is a must-have. Even better if one blade is serrated so it can easily navigate through tough and fibrous material.
- A basic skillet
Lastly, invest in a high-quality stainless steel or non-stick skillet. You will use this regularly for frying, sautéing, searing and more. It’s one of the best ways to cook vegetables, chicken, meat, fish, or eggs on the stovetop.
These ten kitchen essentials should help you cook a wide range of dishes without any trouble. While this minimalist set of items may not necessarily cover everything that you might consider as necessary, you can always build up with more kitchen tools, accessories and gadgets at length. Until then, happy cooking!
At Forever Sharp Kitchen, we offer high-quality, functional and stylish kitchen tools and accessories for your home. We’d be delighted to have you share recipes and pictures of your culinary creations using your kitchen essentials on our Facebook page.