Whether you are new to living alone or are organizing a makeover of your old kitchen, having a shopping list of kitchen essentials can save you time and money. Of course, there are thousands of items and brands to choose from and the sky is the limit when it comes to prices and imagination. Remember to be practical; do not blow your whole budget on one expensive designer item!
- Good quality pots and pans.
The best pots and pans are made of heavy stainless steel or enamel-coated cast iron and are well worth the extra expense because they tend to last a lifetime. Different sizes of saucepans and roasting/oven dishes are essential to be able to prepare a variety of dishes with even heat distribution and without burning.
- Utensils and Bakeware
A variety of utensils should complement your high quality post and pans. A potato masher, nutcracker, a variety of serving spoons and a colander are just the start. Be as basic or as fashionable and gadget-mad as you like, no kitchen is complete without a good amount of utensils. A few baking tins of different sizes will see that you are up to any challenge when it comes to preparing a birthday cake, a pie or other dessert. A rolling pin, flour sifter and cooling rack will come in useful on any baking day too.
A nice set of plates for guests and another for everyday use are essential. Plastic storage containers and mixing bowls are practical necessities in the kitchen. Storage containers can be used to freeze meals prepared in advance, to store leftovers in the fridge, or to carry some lunch to work. Good quality knives of different sizes and for different types of tasks are necessary too. Look for a good quality blade and comfortable handle. Chopping, peeling, carving all need a different type of knife to do the job properly.
A blender, kitchen scales, microwave, toaster and a hand mixer are basics for the modern kitchen. For the more gadget-loving, you could throw in a bread machine, an ice cream maker, a pasta machine for the connoisseurs, a coffeemaker, a waffle iron, a food processor and a coffee grinder. Use your toaster and coffee maker to prepare delicious breakfasts; add variety at the weekend by making waffles. Impress your friends with some home-made Italian pasta followed by home-made ice-cream for dessert.
Treat your kitchen essentials well by keeping them clean with gentle detergents and following the manufacturer’s instructions for correct use. This will make them last longer and turn out to be good value for money. As time passes and your confidence grows, you may want to add some other luxury items that will save you time or help you make a good impression with guests.
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