Food Preparation Process: 6 Kitchen Tools You Should Get First
The kitchen is one of the most important and often-used rooms in a home. Not only is it where the food’s prepared, but it’s also a place for family and friends to gather. If you’re just starting out in the kitchen – or are looking to upgrade your equipment – you should check out this list of the 6 kitchen tools you should get first.
1. A Knife Set
A good quality chef’s knife should feel comfortable in your hand and be the right size for your tasks. The blade should be made of high-carbon stainless steel for durability and easy sharpening. Here’s what should be in your knife set:
- A chef’s knife is a versatile ‘general-purpose’ knife that can be utilized for chopping, mincing and slicing.
- Paring knives are small and versatile and great for peeling fruits and vegetables or trimming meat.
- Utility knives can be used for tasks such as slicing cheese or cutting sandwiches.
- Steak knives are designed to cut through meat without tearing it. They usually have serrated blades that make them ideal for cutting steak, chicken, or fish.
You’ll be able to find exactly what you need by making a quick Google search. If you’re looking for a 16 piece set with a removable block you can learn about the blade, handle, block set and packaging online. It’s also possible to read about the shipping and refund policies, as well as FAQ pages and customer reviews.
2. A Cutting Board
This is a flat surface where you can place food to chop it. Wooden boards are durable and easy to clean, and have a non-slip surface. This makes them safer to use than other types of cutting boards. In contrast, plastic boards can dull your knives and glass ones can break easily.
The size of the board you need will depend on the amount of food you want to chop at one time. If you’re only chopping a few vegetables, a small cutting board will be fine.
3. Measuring Cups And Spoons
These are used to measure the volume or amount of food ingredients being used in recipes. They’re usually made of plastic, metal, or glass, and come in different sizes. Most have markings on them showing the measurements in both metric and imperial units. This helps when you’re using recipes from different countries that use different systems of measurement.
A set of measuring cups and spoons will be relatively inexpensive and they can be found at most kitchenware stores or online. Once you’ve bought some, wash them thoroughly before use.
4. A Saucepan With A Lid
This is a kitchen utensil made of metal, glass or ceramic. It has a deep, cylindrical shape and is used for cooking food in liquids. Metal saucepans conduct heat evenly and efficiently, while glass and ceramic ones can break easily if they’re dropped or heated too quickly.
If you only use your saucepan for boiling water or cooking pasta, any size and material will do. If you want to use it for making soups or sauces, you’ll need a larger saucepan with a lid so that the liquid doesn’t evaporate while it’s cooking.
5. A Frying Pan
This can be used for frying, sautéing, and browning food, and it’s typically made of stainless steel, aluminum or cast iron. They can cook anything from eggs and pancakes to meat and vegetables.
Smaller pans can be used for cooking meals for one or two people only. Larger versions are more sturdy but heavier to move around. Many come with a non-stick coating that makes them easier to use and clean.
6. Mixing Bowls
They’re used for preparing food ingredients or for mixing them together. They come in various sizes and can be made of glass, ceramic, metal or plastic. Most have a pour spout and handle, which makes them easy to use when whisking or stirring ingredients together. Some also have a lid, which is handy for storing leftovers in the fridge. A mixing bowl can be used for:
- Mixing cake batter or dough
- Whisking eggs or sauces
- Stirring soup or chili
- Tossing salad ingredients
- Marinating meat
- Preparing fruit or vegetables for cooking
- Serving food (e.g. pasta or rice dishes)
If you buy these 6 items – and quality ones at that – you’ll be able to do your food preparation quickly and effectively. Cooking should never be a chore, and with the help of these kitchen tools you’ll enjoy the process as never before. In turn, everyone who eats your food will reap the benefits of your new purchases.