Hello Dear Reader,
I was asked about kitchen equipment and if I could recommend any ‘essentials’. I love all kitchenalia and love to nose around ‘cook shops’ and then I go away with ideas in my mind and find ways and means of getting it at prices I can afford or even for free. Some of the photos here are ‘stock’ and some are my own. I thought I would share a few of the kitchen items that I use, as well as the stories behind their acquisition.
Hand Held Food Mixer – I’ve had one for years, from Argos and the cheapest they had. They are a great substitute to a full size mixer and an affordable starter piece of equipment. Ask your colleagues, put a shout out on Freecycle, put a notice up in your church foyer. There will be one lurking somewhere.
Plastic jugs – Look out for these in Poundland, Trago, your local 99p store. They are really useful for microwaving veg, just cover with an upturned plate. I also make cake mix in them and pour the mix into the cake tins.
Cake stand – Car boot sales, jumble sales and charity shops. Look in flea markets or on ebay. I paid £5 for mine at a car boot sale. The blue spotty jug is great for gravy, custard, milk or as a water jug on the table. £1 at a car boot sale.
Casserole Dishes with lids – the old fashioned enamelled dish came from Trago, you can also buy them on market stalls or cook shops. They are well worth having as the dimples do the basting for you. The cast iron dish was from a car boot sale, it was stained but I filled it with water and a strong bleach solution and it was good to go.
Kenwood Chef – My retro orange 1970’s Kenwood chef, was lurking in the small ads of our local paper for £25 and it is one of my best purchases. They cost hundreds new so keep your eyes open on ebay or in the local paper. They are too heavy to post and difficult to pack, so you may find one in your local area at a reasonable price.
Food Processor – This came from a jumble sale, they gave it me! They didn’t know if it worked or not. I gave them a £5 donation and was delighted with it. You can search on line for instructions. I didn’t get all the bits, but for £5 what I got was well worth it.
Preserving Pan – One of my greatest charity shop finds! £5 from the local Salvation Army shop and it makes jam making so much easier as I can keep the jam on a rolling boil for longer and get a better set.
Electronic Scales – I measure directly into the mixing bowl or jug. I just place the receptacle on top ‘zero’ the scales and then measure.
Chopping boards – It is advised that you have different boards for different jobs. I use wooden chopping boards and scrub them with hot soapy water, spray them with bleach solutions and then scald rinse them with boiling water from the kettle.
Loose bottomed cake tins – mine came from the same jumble sale as the food processor and they make like so much easier. I even make smaller quiches in them and it makes my life so much easier to just lift them out. Another good item to look for at car boot sales and in charity shops.
Electric Slicer – We bought ours years ago, it was expensive at around £20 but we have used it for years. Argos sell these. I also slice home made bread on this, so we have ready sliced bread to use.
Saute Pan – This is basically a deep frying pan with a lid, I start casseroles in these by browning meat and they are far easier to use than a regular frying pan. I use an ordinary frying pan for pancakes or eggs.
Knives – I’ve bought my knives over the years from TK Max. I buy the best I can afford and use a steel to sharpen them every time I use them. If I won the lottery? I would buy Sabatier knives. I have cheap kitchen scissors which I use to open packets and cut up herbs.
Steamer Saucepan – This is mine and again, it came from a car boot sale. Kitchen equipment being sold by ‘booters’ is usually something that they really want shot of and usually goes quite cheaply.
I’ve included just a few kitchen items that I find really useful. I could live without some of them, but they make my life easier. I hope the person who requested this finds some of it useful.
Now over to you Dear Reader, what advice would you give to the person who asked me; what do you find really useful in your kitchen?
Love Froogs xx