How does your kitchen match up to the needs of a slow-carb diet?
Here at The Slow Carb Foodie, we’re committed to helping you become the best slow-carb chef you can be. Part of becoming that chef is working with the right tools. Today I’m continuing my series on building the perfect kitchen by talking about the different tools you’ll need.
You might have a lot of them, but I bet there are a couple pieces you don’t have. The idea is not to have a ton of gadgets (MED principles still apply in your kitchen) but to have a collection of the best things for your purposes.
This short list of tools will allow you to make a good 90% of everything you’ll see on this site or find in any cookbook.
We need to start our day off right, and to do that you need a french press. You may already have a fine coffee maker, but I’m telling you you’ll never get a cup of coffee as delicious as one made in a press. Not even a Keurig makes coffee like my french press can, and I use both regularly.
They’re inexpensive and you’ll thank me for it later.
Bonus: I’ll cover a “that’ll do” gadget later, but I’d also recommend a coffee grinder (burr preferably). They can double as a spice grinder, and frankly there’s nothing like the taste of freshly ground beans steeped for 3 minutes in hot water to get a guy or gal going in the morning.
Extra bonus: some of my favorite cofee is from Blanchard’s in Virginia. In fact, it’s what I’m drinking now!
This tool will prepare more of your slow-carb meals than you realized. The best thing about the slow cooker is that you can prepare ahead of time, cook while you’re not home, and almost effortlessly have dinner, lunch, and second dinner ready when you get home from work.
Cast iron skillet(s)
They just don’t make things like they used to.
Teflon is OK for a little while. I have a Pampered Chef saute pan that held together for a while and was easily my favorite pan. But even it is starting to become useless.
The best pan you’ll ever use – ever – is the cast iron skillet your grandmother had. It’s so seasoned, nothing will stick to it and it cooks the best food ever. They heat wonderfully evenly, and a good seasoned pan will last literally forever. If your grandmother hasn’t given you one, start one for your grandkids.
Great set of knives
Faberware just doesn’t cut it anymore. I promise I didn’t intend for that pun to be there, but I’m leaving it!
Get yourselves a nice set of knives that cut well. My favorite knives are Wusthof. They don’t need to be $400 Japanese ginsu knives, but they should cost more than $20.
With all this preparing ahead and bulk operations you’ll be doing to save yourself time, money, and energy, you’ll need somewhere to put all that extra food. Invest in a good food storage container set and you’ll have everything you need.
Money-saving tip: You can often buy lunchmeat in tupperware containers and it’s not more expensive than the kind in plastic bags. Also, cheat-night Chinese takeout runs could net you some pretty handy leftover containers.
Skip the metal bowls and baking pans and just go glass. It’s easier to clean, won’t rust, and has no teflon that can flake off.
A good set of pyrex mixing bowls and baking dishes will get you a long way.
From chopping vegetables and nuts to blending up your favorite salsa or even making your own mayonnaise, a food processor will be one of the kitchen tools you go to over and over and over. I thought about adding “blender” to the list, but I’m trying to keep it light and tight, and a food processor will do most of what a blender would anyway.
Your best bet would be a food processor with multiple blades, but even a simple one will be extremely useful. I use mine easily every other day.
Extra: This is the “this’ll do” item I mentioned when I talked about the coffee grinder. If you’re in a pinch, a food processor will do that job as well.
You simply don’t need any more than that. If you were expecting a bunch of expensive, state-of-the-art gadgets, I’m sorry to disappoint. All of the little stuff you’ll already have, like spatulas, can openers, and measuring cups. I wanted to give you a short and tight list of extremely useful things you can add to your kitchen to make it that much easier to maintain focus on your health.
Let’s here from you: Which most useful kitchen gadget do you have that you just couldn’t live without? What do you have that’s not on this list?
*Photo credit: ellenm1