What's Your Favorite Cookware, Cooking Utensils/appliances?
Q: Hi everyone, I have been enjoying this message board as a lurker, but am coming out of hiding to ask for your help. I am getting married this year, and since we have been living in an extremely small 1 bedroom apt. w/a galley kitchen (no room for 'real' cooking, much less cooking appliances) I have no idea what kind of cookware, cooking utensils, or cooking/baking appliances to register for. Hopefully we'll be moving into a house with a 'normal' kitchen after the wedding, and then I would really like to get back into cooking, which is one of my passions since I was a little girl. I am overwhelmed because this is our one opportunity to build up our kitchen with the stuff that we'll need, but I honestly don't know where to start. I don't know what pans/tools/appliances are really necessary or very important to have. What brands do you recommend? All I have for cookware right now are a couple of really shabby (and probably toxic) non-stick frying pans and a pretty sad looking stainless steel pot. So I'd like to register for a nice cookware set, I think I'd really prefer stainless (maybe with a copper bottom?), but I don't really know. So what in your opinion are the cookware, cooking utensils, and cooking appliances that no cook should live without? Any suggestions would be so helpful. I'm sure there is stuff like certain pots or pans that I will need but don't even know exist!
A: I love my Revere Ware stainless with copper clad bottoms. I use it for all my every day cooking. I have had it for over 20 years, and Mom has had hers for over 50 and it's still going strong. I also recommend Lodge cast iron. I love a good heavy skillet that I can put in the oven if need be. As for gadgets, the one thing I use more than anything else is a ladel. Of course, I'm a soupaholic, but seems I should have more than one of these for serving up soups and glopping (that's a technical term!) sauce over pasta. Oh, speaking of pasta, get a good sized strainer. Best wishes on your marriage and a larger kitchen! Mine is tiny but I manage. Buy cheap starter pieces of anodized aluminum cookware and stainless steel multi-clad like Allclad and see which you enjoy more. You can always sell the one you don't like on ebay. You'll need several frying pans, several sauce pans, a lasagna dish, a dutch oven, a saute pan, a casserole, a griddle for pan cakes, and a stockpot or two. You'll also need a souffle pan, two cookie sheets, an eight-in sq pan for brownis, a loaf pan, round cake pans and muffin tins. You may also want porcelain ramekins and au gratin dishes. For utensils, you'll need a soup ladle, a slotted spoon, several hamburger turners, salt and pepper shakers/grinders, heat-proof spatulas, a grapefruit knife, an eggslicer, a melon baller, a whisk, strainers of various sizes, a colander, a can and bottle opener, a jar opener, an ice cream scoop, a cake tester, a stainless steel counter scraper, chopping boards, a meat thermometer and maybe a garlic press. You'll also need a good set of knives-chef's, serrated for bread, carving, paring, fileting, chinese cleaver, utility. For appliances, some possibilities are a food processor, a kitchenaid mixer, an inversion hand mixer, a coffee and expresso maker, a blender, a juicer, a toaster, a waffle iron and a microwave/convection oven. If you register at Bed Bath & Beyond, Crate and Barrel or Linens & Things, someone on staff can help you make good selections. If you're afraid you won't get someone knowledgeable, call first and make an appt with the department manager.
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