Five Favorite Things: Kitchen Gadgets

March 13th, 2011

When I was putting together the “What We’re Reading” page for the blog, I had a good time compiling the list of my favorite parenting books. There’s something fun about trying to pick your favorite things in various genres. That said, I’m not into Top 10 lists, because 10 is often too many for me to be able to focus on. Five is a much more manageable number.

Thus today I give you my Five Favorite Kitchen Gadgets.

Garlic Press:
Somehow, I lived 28 years of my life without owning a garlic press. How did I survive? And why on earth would anybody in their right mind mince garlic with a knife when you can just smoosh it through a garlic press and — presto! — minced garlicky goodness. You can spend a lot on a garlic press, but you don’t need to. Ikea makes an awesome one.

Food Processor:
Here’s the secret to making the most of your food processor: keep it on your counter. Yes, it’s big and bulky but if you put it away, you won’t use it. Trust me. Now that my food processor lives on my counter, I use it all the time. I dice onions, shred cheese, blend soups, and pureed all of Miss Mouse’s baby food in it.

Pancake Spatula:
Not all spatulas are created equal. In fact, there is only one brand that may cross the threshold of my kitchen: Williams Sonoma. It’s small, it’s sturdy, and you could probably use it on the surface of the sun without worrying about it melting.

Stackable Cookie Racks:
Cooling racks that stack? Genius!! When you have a small kitchen with limited counter space — or your amply-sized kitchen is a huge mess with drawings, bills, and toys covering the counters — these are seriously helpful.

Big Honking Knife:
My mother gave me the gift of an expensive knife. I shall be forever grateful to her. If you spend much time cooking, it’s worth investing in a high-quality knife. This sucker makes chopping a breeze. When my mom first bought hers (back when I was using a sad, cheapo knife set), she left a memorable voice message for me, demanding that I immediately go into my kitchen and slice a baby carrot lengthwise as many times as possible, confident that she could get hers into far more slivers than I, now that she had a new knife. (She was right.)

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