24 June, 2019
What Are Kitchen Gadgets? – A Kitchen Must Have: Sharp Knives!
Have you heard of the saying, “The right tool for the right job?” I believe it is a proverb. I can remember my dad doing a job around the house and getting frustrated because he didn’t have the right tools. He would eventually break down and go buy that tool and then talk about how much time he wasted trying to get the job done without it. He might have spent a little extra money, but the time saved was priceless!
Having the right tools is very important when working. Have you ever tried to hammer in a nail with a rock? It can be done with a rock, but it is so much easier with a hammer! It is the same thing when you are cooking in a kitchen. You need the proper tools to really be effective, precise and save time. Have you tried cutting a tomato with a dull knife? You probably either quit or ended up with a mess! Cutting tomatoes really requires a good strong sharp knife. Have you tried mixing a double batch of cookie dough with a hand beater? Did you ruin the beater? Or, have to stop and mix by hand? If you had the proper sized kitchen stand mixer, you could have put your ingredients into it and let it do the work, saving you a lot of time and elbow grease! There are many other tasks in the kitchen that are the same way. If you have the right tools, it will save you time and it can save money on expensive ingredients.
What are kitchen gadgets? Kitchen gadgets are any tool that you use in the kitchen. Some of them are small and inexpensive. Others are large and require budgeting to purchase them. In any case, large or small, you need to make sure your kitchen has the proper tools to do the job correctly.
To get a good start in your kitchen, I recommend some of your first gadgets to be a good sharp knife or knife set. Maybe you are getting married or setting up a kitchen for the first time, you can add these things to a wedding shower list. Or, maybe you are like me and have had a kitchen set up for awhile but my knives have worn out! I am in the process of saving up for one of the good sets with CutCo being the top on my list right now. I just had a demonstration of them and loved what I saw about them!
Knives For The Home Cook and Their Uses
These knives are some of the most common used in average homes:
Bread Knife – The serrated blade of this knife allows you to easily cut through breads, bagels, tomatoes, cakes or other foods with tough exteriors and soft interiors.
Chef’s or Cook’s Knife – Chop, dice, and mince foods with the wedge-shape blade.
Paring Knife – This knife is comfortable to handle when peeling and cutting fruits and vegetables or other small items.
Utility Knife – The thin blade of this knife makes it easy to smoothly slice sandwiches and other soft foods, such as fruit and cheese.
These knives are not as common, but do have good purposes. Deciding if you should get one depends on what you plan to cut with them.
Boning Knife – A narrow knife used to cut meat off bones.
Carving Knife – This long, think knife makes it easy to slice cooked meats.
Fillet Knife – This knife’s long, think, flexible blade is useful for efficiently filleting fish.
Must Haves – Knives
The first thing ALL kitchens need are a set of good knives and cutting boards. I use these every day when cooking. If you are going to buy anything, buy these first! I can’t stress enough how much having a good knife and cutting board can be.
Cutco Homemaker + 8 Set –– Since I had a demonstration on this set this past week, I was truly impressed with the quality of these knives! Not only did they do the job with the demonstration presented, but they have a lifetime warranty, and the company will sharpen them “if” they dull (usually once every 10 years). The price is high, but the investment for a knife that lasts a lifetime and can be passed on from generation to generation, can’t be beat!
The set include:
- 8 – Table knives
- 10 – Kitchen Knives and forks
- 1 – Knife Block
- 1 – Sharpener
- 1 – Cutting Board
Wustof – 5 piece High Carbon Stainless Steel Starter Set – This is a very nice set for anyone looking to get a good start with a high quality knife set. Wustof brand is used by many of the famous chefs!
The set includes:
- 1- 10 inch cook’s knife. It has multiple uses, which range from chopping and slicing fruits and vegetables to slicing and disjointing meats.
- 1 – 3 1/2 inch Paring knife. Use this knife for peeling and mincing spices and vegetables. Also, for doing detail work.
- 1 – 9 inch Bread knife. Use this for cutting bread and cakes and tomatoes.
- 1- 9 inch Steel – Use this to keep your knives from going dull.
- 1 – 8 pocket knife storage roll – A perfect place to keep your knives from getting banged up and scratched.
Zwilling J.A. Henckels Cultry Professional “S” Starter Set – This is a professional set for those wanting to get started collecting this brand. Again, many famous professional chefs use this brand! This set will not stain or chip therefore they will keep their sharpness longer. This set includes:
- 1 – 8 inch chefs knife. A multiple use knife.
- 1. 5″ serrated Bread or Tomato knife. A great knife for effortlessly dicing tomatoes.
- 3.5 ” Parring Knife. A great little knife for detailing or small jobs
6 Knives, 12 piece Cuisinart Ceramic Coated Knife Set – A very nice set for those who needs a little cheaper knife set for their budget and are saving for the professional knives later. This set will last a couple years, but they are not going to last nearly as long as a professional set. If your budget doesn’t allow for a professional set, this will get you by till you can save the money for them. It includes:
- 1 – 8 inches Chef Knife
- 1 – 8 inches Slicing Knife
- 1 – 8 inches Serrated Knife
- 1- 7 ” Santoku Knife
- 1 – 6.5 inch Utility Knife
- 1 – 3.5 inch Parring Knife
To go along with your knives, you are going to need a good cutting board to protect your counters and table tops. You want one that will be easy to clean and will not harbor any bacteria. Not only do you want your kitchen functioning properly, but you want it food safe.
First I recommend a large cutting board for rolling out pie crusts and cutting large amounts of meats and vegetables. This is a large one! Take a measuring table and test it out before buying to make sure you have enough room for it.
- Made of high density polyethylene
- Nonabsorbant and safe for professional knives
- NSF Approved
Next, I recommend having several smaller cutting boards handy for those smaller jobs.
I like the bamboo, but you do have to oil them and keep them conditioned.
- Utopia thick Bamboo
- Resists cracking and breaking
- Bacteria resistant bamboo wood
- Large 12 x 26″, Med 9 x 13″, Small 9 x 11″
I hope this gets you started in the right track for stocking your kitchen! And yes, it is just the beginning but a good beginning. Be watching for part two where I will give you all the “little” gadgets that I use on a regular basis.
Do you own a knife set? What brand do you like? I only touched the surface in my research and would love to hear others experience with knives.