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Essential Kitchen Tools?


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50 replies to this topic

#31 radtek

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 08:31 AM

I have a smaller version bought at the Asian-mart for $7. After 8 years you could still shave with it and I've never had to sharpen it in any real serious way.

#32 Syzygies

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 02:58 PM

wok-grate.jpg


Wok: Flat or Round Bottom?
http://www.thaifooda...es/woktype.html

(Grace Young's book "Stir-Frying to the Sky's Edge" takes the opposite view, but my best wok is round.)

Nevertheless, wok rings are too unstable for my tastes. These wok grates are $7 many places in any Chinatown, and replace your existing gas burner grate. I had to rasp two corners a bit to match the rounding of my existing 8.5" by 8.5" grate, then it fit like a charm.
Per la strada incontro un passero che disse "Fratello cane, perche sei cosi triste?"
Ripose il cane: "Ho fame e non ho nulla da mangiare."

#33 tsp.

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 03:08 PM

I'm putting it out there, and this is going to be controversial, my immersion circulator. I can prepare large amounts of meals in one hit and just reheat.

#34 Panaderia Canadiense

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 04:22 PM

I don't think that's controversia, tsp. This thread is asking what you consider to be an essential tool in your roll, and if you figure that's an immersion circulator, then it's an essential tool for you.
Elizabeth Campbell, baking 10,000 feet up at 1° South latitude.
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#35 flourgirl

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 11:31 PM

Limiting this to tools. There are other things that I consider to be indispensable (like oven mitts that go up to my elbows), but they're not strictly hardware.

4" paring knife, 8" chef's knife, 12" nakiri, 16" cake knife, steel, CrO2 stone, fork, veg peeler, bottle/can opener, tongs, silicone spatula, whisk, fine mesh strainers, barrel sifter, rolling pin, silpat, cup measure(s), measuring spoons, standard and candy thermometers (solid state), Microplane or grater or some sort, small digital balance with 5 kg weight capacity in mg increments. Of this, the only thing that doesn't fit in my roll is the barrel sifter - I have collapsable silicone 1/4, 1/3, 1/2 and 1 C measures, and my balance fits in the palm of my hand.

EDIT - Pots and pans are a whole 'nother story entirely, as are appliances. For example, all of the above is useless to me without a stove and an oven of some description!

I've never seen a 16- inch knife. What brand do you use?

#36 Panaderia Canadiense

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Posted 08 February 2013 - 05:19 AM

Tramontina Linha Profissional. It's not even the longest cake knife they make.
Elizabeth Campbell, baking 10,000 feet up at 1° South latitude.
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#37 flourgirl

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 11:44 AM

Tramontina Linha Profissional. It's not even the longest cake knife they make.

How long is that knife?

#38 Panaderia Canadiense

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 05:48 AM

The longest Tramontina cake knife I've ever seen was 24" - that's excessive for my needs, and doesn't fit in my roll.
Elizabeth Campbell, baking 10,000 feet up at 1° South latitude.
My eG Food Blog (2011)My eG Foodblog (2012)

#39 flourgirl

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 10:51 PM

That is huge! I can't imagine what it's use would be.

#40 Panaderia Canadiense

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 05:41 AM

If you'd ever been to a very large Latin American party, the use would become obvious. I have been commissioned to make sheet cakes that cover the entire surface of large tables - and at that point, a 2 foot long knife would become indispensable for slicing. When clients ask for this, I always make sure they've got one of the 2-footers for cutting, or else some other method, because once a cake goes past 18 contiguous inches, I will refuse to cut it for them.

EDIT: because I normally contract a truck to deliver this volume of cake, I am reluctant to take any knife with me I can't hide in my roll. I've had drivers refuse to take me with openly carried knives, even when it's very obvious that they're for the event I'm catering.

Edited by Panaderia Canadiense, 13 February 2013 - 05:42 AM.

Elizabeth Campbell, baking 10,000 feet up at 1° South latitude.
My eG Food Blog (2011)My eG Foodblog (2012)

#41 judec

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 08:12 AM

Out of all the knives I have, I consider my Chan Chi Kee chinese cleaver most indispensable. So lightweight and glides through anything despite its size.

#42 flourgirl

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 08:32 AM

If you'd ever been to a very large Latin American party, the use would become obvious. I have been commissioned to make sheet cakes that cover the entire surface of large tables - and at that point, a 2 foot long knife would become indispensable for slicing. When clients ask for this, I always make sure they've got one of the 2-footers for cutting, or else some other method, because once a cake goes past 18 contiguous inches, I will refuse to cut it for them.

EDIT: because I normally contract a truck to deliver this volume of cake, I am reluctant to take any knife with me I can't hide in my roll. I've had drivers refuse to take me with openly carried knives, even when it's very obvious that they're for the event I'm catering.


Understandably so.

I just ordered a 14 inch cake knife for torting and sheet cakes. It's good to know there are longer knives out there should I ever need one. Thanks :smile:

#43 flourgirl

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 08:34 AM

I love my KitchenAid mixer. It has opened a new world of baking for me. If it went, I would have to replace it the same day.

#44 Syzygies

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 10:23 AM

If it went, I would have to replace it the same day.

The old KitchenAids are great. I read lots of reviews complaining about plastic parts failing on recent models, so I spent the extra money for a Viking. But who knows, they might have fixed their recent problems.
http://www.amazon.co...duct/B0007WLJ3I
Per la strada incontro un passero che disse "Fratello cane, perche sei cosi triste?"
Ripose il cane: "Ho fame e non ho nulla da mangiare."

#45 flourgirl

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 09:44 AM

If it went, I would have to replace it the same day.

The old KitchenAids are great. I read lots of reviews complaining about plastic parts failing on recent models, so I spent the extra money for a Viking. But who knows, they might have fixed their recent problems.
http://www.amazon.co...duct/B0007WLJ3I


Do you like it? I have Viking cookware and I love it. They make a solid product.

#46 Syzygies

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 02:15 PM

Do you like it? I have Viking cookware and I love it.

Yes. I can directly compare with my wife's older KitchenAid in a different kitchen, and I prefer the well-built Viking. I use it primarily for very wet bread doughs; she uses the KitchenAid all the time for desserts of all descriptions.
Per la strada incontro un passero che disse "Fratello cane, perche sei cosi triste?"
Ripose il cane: "Ho fame e non ho nulla da mangiare."

#47 JoNorvelleWalker

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 04:45 PM

What is old KitchenAid and what is new KitchenAid? Mine is circa 1985.

#48 andiesenji

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 07:32 PM

What is old KitchenAid and what is new KitchenAid? Mine is circa 1985.


Yours is pre purchase by Whirlpool and considered an "Old" Kitchenaid. Hobart actually sold the Kitchenaid division to Dart & Kraft in 1980 but the manufacturing remained the same. Whirlpool bought the division in 1986 and continued the same manufacturing process.
It was in 1989 that Whirlpool retooled and changed the manufacturing process and "cheapened" the product. The newer models made during the past 5 years or so are much improved over those made during the 1990s and well into the 2000s.

I burnt out two of those made during the 2000s and got replacements for both. I then got the 6-quart which has worked okay but when I need to process a very stiff dough, I use my DLX.
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#49 JoNorvelleWalker

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 09:32 PM

Thanks! Interesting to learn the history.

#50 pbear

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Posted 17 February 2013 - 12:28 AM

I've been thinking about this thread for a few weeks and paid attention to what tools I use often. My list is as follows:

knives (obviously), especially an 8" and 10" chefs

stirrers, especially a pair of woodfiber laminate paddles

tongs, specifically, a silicone tipped tweezer-type one

iced-tea spoon (my ghetto Kunz spoon, especially for testing sauces and samples)

immersion blender (for the obvious uses)

kitchen shears (mostly for opening packaging)

pastry scraper (mostly for moving stuff from cutting board to pot)

silicone spatula (to clear pots and bowls of product)

hotpads (for the obvious use)

electric scale (ditto)

cutting boards (ditto)

vegetable peeler (ditto)

Thermapen (guess)


There are others, of course, but that's my main "go to" list.

Edited by pbear, 17 February 2013 - 12:33 AM.


#51 MelissaH

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Posted 19 February 2013 - 07:05 AM

 

If it went, I would have to replace it the same day.

The old KitchenAids are great. I read lots of reviews complaining about plastic parts failing on recent models, so I spent the extra money for a Viking. But who knows, they might have fixed their recent problems.
http://www.amazon.co...duct/B0007WLJ3I

 


Do you like it? I have Viking cookware and I love it. They make a solid product.

I have both a KitchenAid (circa 1992) and a Viking. My KA is a tilt-head model with a smaller bowl (only 4.5 quarts), and it's just not big enough to handle a whole batch of many of the bread dough recipes I enjoy. After one too many hair-pulling-out disasters, I got a Viking with a 7 quart bowl, which has no problems making bread dough recipes that call for 1 kg of flour. However, I still use my KA for things like cake batter and cookie dough, as I think the smaller bowl is easier to handle for smaller amounts.


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