Thursday, February 21, 2008

A Few of My Favorite Things....

It's been a pretty busy week in the Food Whore household. We've been knocking back some leftovers for a few days now. So to fill the void in the cooking action, I thought I would tell you about my favorite cooking utensils and appliances. But first, let me say this: I am in no way benefiting from promoting these products. In fact most of these items were given to me as a gift by my mom who enjoys cooking as much as I do. I love these specific products because I have found them to be easy to use and clean, and they are affordable. Not every cook loves the same products. Feel free to try out many different versions before deciding what works best in your kitchen.

There seems to be a great debate going on about pots and pans these days. Stainless steel, cast iron, non-stick.... who knew people could get so heated (pun intended) over a sautee pan? We bought these pans with some wedding money and I fell in love immediately. We were able to donate all our old mismatched pans and lids. It was great to simplify. These are Calphalon's Non-Stick line. It's wonderful.

I am anal. I love organizing. I also love miniature versions of everyday items, so this conveniently stackable, comes-with-matching-lids set of pyrex cookware was right up my alley. How can you not love ramekins? When cooking a complicated and long recipe, it's great to prep all your ingredients in little bowls and have them easily accessible....and then you can talk to your audience (read: dog) like you're Rachel Ray and just taping another show.

Confession: I am a killer of spatulas. I burn them. Chop them. Melt them. Break them. Lose them. Spatulas run in fear at the sound of my name. But not this wonderful Kitchenaid Spatula. Don't let the brand frighten you. I got this one for about $6 at Publix. I loved it so much that I bought a second one. And I might go back for a 3rd. I use this baby every time I walk in the kitchen.

One might wonder what a culinary genius (that's me) is doing with a dorm-room accessory. My mom bought this for me when I was in college (lazy). I love my Foreman. It still has a place on my over-crowded counter. I don't use it as much anymore, but I like it to be accessible. The Foreman is great for the non-cook. It's also great if you're in a hurry. You can cook a chicken breast in about 6 minutes.

Or if slow cookin' is more you're style, how 'bout this crock pot from Black and Decker? I've actually got two crock pots (a big one and a little one). This is another great item for the non-cook...just fill it up, turn it on and come back in 8 hours. Et voila, dinner!

What did I do before my food processor? Life was not worth living...ok, that's a bit extreme, but seriously, this thing has revolutionized the way I prepare food. 20 minutes of grating cheese by hand, risking scraped knuckles or arthritis? Not anymore. This baby cranks it out in about 25 seconds.

I shall call him Mini-Me. 2 crock pots and two food processors! Isn't that a bit over-kill, you're wondering. Why no it's not. This mini is wonderful for a quick processing job when I don't want to wash the big one. It's great for mixing dressing, chopping herbs or grating some carrots for a salad.

Well, that's a glimpse into my tiny and over-stuffed kitchen. These are the staples for me. But like I said, different strokes for different folks. Find what works best for you. Someday when I have the kitchen of my dreams, I may just have a few more crock pots.

Bon Appetit!

The Food Whore

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