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Things from the professional kitchen that every home cook should have


Fat Guy
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Someone else to clean up.

This gets my vote, too. :)

For equipment, I am a big fan of sheet pans. Both the common half sheet sized (full sheets are too big for a home kitchen) and the very handy quarter sheet size. You can use these for all sorts of things without even putting them in the oven.

Jeff Meeker, aka "jsmeeker"

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I absolutely think that people would at least bake more if they had better equipment. When friends come over and I'm baking they're always amazed that everything goes together so easily with the right equipment. It makes for a more consistent product, as well as saving sooo much time that you're not tempted to use dumb shortcuts that inevitably result in an inferior product. Now if all the recipes could just be written better...but that's another thread too!

If you ate pasta and antipasto, would you still be hungry? ~Author Unknown

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  • 3 months later...
  • 3 weeks later...

yes, a meat slicer, stainless steel counter tops, a huge butcher block, a gas stove and for fun an old wood fired stove/oven. One of those big blenders, heated cupboards (ah, warm plates!) and chilled cupboards (not fridge cold, but basement cool, houses here usually don't have basements). A great but out of the way stereo and a waterproof laptop. Something for everybody else to do so they don't crowd my kitchen :laugh:

Oh, and self cleaning floors.

"And don't forget music - music in the kitchen is an essential ingredient!"

- Thomas Keller

Diablo Kitchen, my food blog

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I agree with flat parchment, cambros, sheet pans, hotel pans, speed racks, and prep bowls. I have a bunch of these in my kitchen. It is quite often cheaper than consumer versions.

The one thing I would love to have is a true deck oven for breads and pizzas. Our screen porch needs to be be rebuilt, so I might look into the cost of building a small wood fired oven that can be accessed from inside the deck.

Dan

Edited by DanM (log)

"Salt is born of the purest of parents: the sun and the sea." --Pythagoras.

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My home kitchen wish list:

1) A 3/4 inch gas line. This has been a common add to people's wish list. Unfortunately, it would require $xx,xxx to retrofit our house. It's not happening. So I get around this by virtue of an "Asian street vendor" propane wok burner. It has the BTUs I need -- but I have to go outside. (My outside kitchen is better stocked than my indoor kitchen, but that's another thread.)

In my opinion, this is the one thing that civilians just don't understand -- and that's why most home cooks can't properly brown meat or sauté.

2) A Rational Oven. This is something I wish for at home A LOT. And it's got to be able to take full sheet pans.

3) If I didn't have it already, the pressure sprayer in my deep, deep sink would be here on this list. I can't imagine not having one. It was one of the first things I did to the kitchen.

4) Real pantry space. My 12 square foot pantry just doesn't cut it. I've built shelves from floor to ceiling, but I'd rather have a line of speed racks in a pantry that was designed with actual food storage and handling in mind.

5) A walk-in. I have two refrigerator/freezer units, and I don't like either of them. I'd rather just have a big freezer unit and a real walk in. I don't know where my guests would sit, as I'd have to give up the dining room entirely. But I still wish I had one. One of my refrigerators has been giving me problems. When it finally dies, I'm replacing it with True reach in. No door shelves, no butter caddies, no water dispensers -- just space and a lot of it.

6) If I had the refrigeration and freezer space that I want, I would build a meat-cutting table for my band saw.

7) Cambro containers. This is one thing I've been slowly rectifying -- thanks to restaurants going out of business and a used restaurant supply warehouse close to my house.

8) A real meat slicer. Not one of those piddly anemic consumer-grade slicers. A Hobart. Eventually, the aforementioned used restaurant supply warehouse will provide.

9) The first time I made sausages, I was hooked. I'm currently using the Kitchenaid grinder attachment. But a Grizzly* sausage stuffer is in my very near future, and that warehouse will eventually have a Hobart grinder for sale.

10) Another "gonna buy it soon" item -- an immersion circulator. I can't think of a reason NOT to have one in the kitchen.

* Grizzly is a woodworking supply shop that has some decent meat cutting tools. They're a good bang for the buck.

Who cares how time advances? I am drinking ale today. -- Edgar Allan Poe

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One of my refrigerators has been giving me problems. When it finally dies, I'm replacing it with a True reach in. No door shelves, no butter caddies, no water dispensers -- just space and a lot of it.

Oh,yes! With glass doors! That would be wonderful. Hurry and die, clunky LG refrigerator, die, die! :laugh:

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One of my refrigerators has been giving me problems. When it finally dies, I'm replacing it with a True reach in. No door shelves, no butter caddies, no water dispensers -- just space and a lot of it.

Oh,yes! With glass doors! That would be wonderful. Hurry and die, clunky LG refrigerator, die, die! :laugh:

I don't know if I would want glass doors... People will see the experiments growing in there... :blink:

"Salt is born of the purest of parents: the sun and the sea." --Pythagoras.

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This probably falls afoul of "should" to "would be nice." There's so much I miss from my pro kitchen that it would essentially be a replication of an average checklist, but priorities would be a second oven, blastable range heat (e.g., that can adequately handle my 80 qt.), a more expansive reefer, a lowboy of some sort, additional cellar space (for wines, charcuterie, and the various cheeses made at home), additional rack/hook space for the tons of pots and pans currently stacked in ugly and cumbersome fashion, and ... my gelato-baby, a stainless, weighty beauty, missed very much.

Edited by paul o' vendange (log)

-Paul

 

Remplis ton verre vuide; Vuide ton verre plein. Je ne puis suffrir dans ta main...un verre ni vuide ni plein. ~ Rabelais

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  • 3 weeks later...

I definitely agree that a slicer is an excellent idea, but only if you get a professional grade one, since 'consumer-grade' ones never seem to be up to their job. My boyfriend lost his heart to a professional slicing unit on diplay in a shop window in Bolzano; I was fairly certain he'd also lost his mind (it weighs 9.5 Kg, about 20 lbs.), when he calmly purchased, dismantled, and packed it into his suitcase, to take home with us. But it's been a terrific addition to the kitchen, and its perfomance, when compared to that of slicers intended for consumer kitchens, is at a whole other level.

I also agree that 'less stuff' is a great idea; one of the things that makes me crazy when I find myself working in other people's kitchens is the sheer amount of stuff you have to plough through, to find, say, a slotted spoon.... and how can someone have two wooden lemon jucers, but not a single strainer (in all fairness, I suspect that many such items are unwanted gifts)?

Michaela, aka "Mjx"
Manager, eG Forums
mscioscia@egstaff.org

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  • 1 month later...

Speed racks hold bottles, mainly liquor behind bars so bartenders can quickly find different liquors during service, but they would be convenient for holding most anything in a bottle like olive oil, or vinegars, or spices, or even boxes to better organize them.

Any number of manufacturers like Scott make under counter ice machines that fit within home cabinetry. The bonus is they make LOTS of ice and the ice in this type of machine is often clear.

As for refrigeration, look at some of the commercial brands. The downside is that they are often noisier and don't always fit in traditional home refrigerator spaces.

"A cloud o' dust! Could be most anything. Even a whirling dervish.

That, gentlemen, is the whirlingest dervish of them all." - The Professionals by Richard Brooks

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I also agree with the meat slicer and I'll throw in a dedicated meat grinder, to boot. I wouldn't call mine professional or commercial grade...they're from Cabela's, in fact...but they're far beefier than what's found in your average kitchen store. The Kitchenaid meat grinding attachment got me started but my ¾-hp, #12 grinder is a joy to use by comparison.

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I did much the same with wood. I will never do a kitchen w/o same. I made mine so that Taylor and Ng hooks fit. Wonderful to live with. Everything accessible.

In my kitchen I created two long "rails" suspended from the ceiling, and all my cookware hangs from these on hooks. I bolted ceiling plates directly through into the studs, screwed in lengths of threaded bar, and fastened black pipe to the bottom using screw-together threaded O-rings. Has a kind of industrial-but-finished look to it that I like. And there's certainly nowhere else I could put all that stuff!

Could there please be photos of the above posts. Thanks.

Sorry I missed that way back then... Just stumbled upon the request and have added photos.

PotRack_1.jpg

PotRack_2.jpg

PotRack_3.jpg

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I did much the same with wood. I will never do a kitchen w/o same. I made mine so that Taylor and Ng hooks fit. Wonderful to live with. Everything accessible.

In my kitchen I created two long "rails" suspended from the ceiling, and all my cookware hangs from these on hooks. I bolted ceiling plates directly through into the studs, screwed in lengths of threaded bar, and fastened black pipe to the bottom using screw-together threaded O-rings. Has a kind of industrial-but-finished look to it that I like. And there's certainly nowhere else I could put all that stuff!

Could there please be photos of the above posts. Thanks.

Sorry I missed that way back then... Just stumbled upon the request and have added photos.

(Moan) I am in kitchen lust and envy!

"Commit random acts of senseless kindness"

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A truly commercial range, with star-shaped hexagonal gas burners.

Saw these in the window of a SMEG - kitchen store. From them you can get a hotbox, integrated deepfryers, you name it, they got it. For the home I mean. And their fridges are amazing. The price is amazing too...

I don't know which country you are from Chris, but hope this helps, they have outlets on every continent. http://www.smegusa.com/Catalogue/Hobs.aspx

Edited by Karri (log)

The perfect vichyssoise is served hot and made with equal parts of butter to potato.

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