I’m not a big user of kitchen gadgets. I don’t have a rice cooker, or a juicer, or an icecream maker, or anything like that really. My mother lent me her slow cooker earlier this year, because I thought I might use it. It wasn’t useful enough for me to justify the space it took up so I gave back. All my cooking and preserving is done on our makeshift kitchen bench (you can see what my kitchen looks like here), in cramped quarters. Because of this, any kitchen item I own must be able to be used for lots of different jobs. So here are my top 5 pieces of kitchen equipment – the items I use regularly, that make life easier!
This gets used to slice potatoes for potato bake, beetroots for pickling, cabbage for coleslaw, and vegetables for stirfry (just to list a few things). We had an old orange 1970’s version I had picked up on a garage sale 15 years ago, but just recently we have up graded to a new model. These things are sharp and dangerous, so be super careful with them, but ours gets used at least once a week – usually more often.
We are always bottling up something, whether it be jam, or pickles, or tomato passata. These funnels sit in the top of the jars and prevent the neck getting gunked up, and jam being spilt everywhere. When I first found out these existed, I raced straight out to buy one – game changer!
My mum brought this down for me one time when she came to visit, and I admit that I made derisive sounds. Turns out she was right. Our potatoes don’t come nicely washed like shop bought ones, and this brush is just perfect for getting all that dirt off. We use it for all our root vegetables. Our brush is starting to look a little sad, so I’m keeping an eye out (or getting my mum to) for a new one.
Half Moon Scrapers.
These are the bomb. Any time I need anything scraped out properly I grab one of these. Cake batter out of the bowl, or jam out a saucepan or even left over casserole that needs to be binned. The round side goes around the edge of the bowl, while the straight side and corner gets right into saucepans, and they are so much more effective than those long scrapers on a handle. Best of all these things are super cheap (only a couple of dollars), so I have several in my kitchen drawer so I always have a clean one on hand!
Magnetic Knife Rack
I’m a bit thingy about my knives. I don’t have super expensive ones, but they aren’t cheap either, and they stay sharp longer if they aren’t thrown in a drawer with all the other bits of random kitchen paraphenalia. In our previous house we also had a knife rack, and when we decided to move down here, I bought this one, and stuck it up straight away. Having my knives easily accessible as well as knowing that they are sharp makes life so much easier.
So tell me, what kitchen equipment are on your ‘must have’ list, and what items do you just not bother with?