Starting my kitchen over from scratch. Trying to get it to just the best of the essentials. What's your must have pan/blade/ appliance?

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  • July 13, 2015


Annie S. July 24, 2015
After 25+ years I have changed from a baking stone to a baking steel. It does an impressively better job.
yellowbird July 24, 2015
One of my first kitchen purchases was a baking stone and I use it several times a week. Amazing homemade pizza, pitas, and baguettes here you come! And I second (or twentysecond...) a good knife and cast iron skillet!
bugbitten July 23, 2015
If you're truly starting from scratch, and not just adding and subtracting from your batterie de cuisine: Get a big, big fridge. Walk-in! There's never enough room in there. Get gas burners of at least 12,000 BTU. You'll be happy and quick. Finally, spend over $100 on an electric knife sharpener and learn to love it. Good luck, I've been trying for years to remodel my space.
Bevi July 23, 2015
If you want to get into canning, there is a whole slather of equipment, but so worth the investment. All items can be stored in the large enamel kettle you buy for boiling water baths. Wide mouth funnel, grippers for immersing canning jars, ladle, etc.
QueenSashy July 22, 2015
Knifes are essential in anything you might do, so pick the one or two you will use the most with great care. I use Wusthoff, but as ChefJune said that is a personal choice. Building a kitchen from scratch can be quite an investment, so you may want to think about what you like to cook and what you cook most of the time. If you bake a lot maybe your appliance investment is a Kitchen Aid mixer. Or Vitamix if you are into soups and smoothies? Personally, I use my Cuisinart food processor a lot. I make a lot of stews and casseroles and find Le Creuset indispensable... I make a lot of stocks and have three stock pots so that I can parallelize. Other than that, several things that make my life easier in the kitchen are a good vegetable peeler, thermapen, digital scale, good garlic press, and a set of stainless steel measuring cups.
B W. July 21, 2015
A good big clear workspace, 3 feet deep and at least 4 feet wide.
ktr July 21, 2015
I completely agree! I never realized how much I'd love the large island in our kitchen. Personally, I would never put a sink or stove in an island because it breaks up the workspace. It is awesome when I'm canning rolling out dough. It becomes a buffet table when we have company over. And it also makes a great surface for cutting fabric on!
spiffypaws July 19, 2015
get your sheet pans at a restaurant supply store. They are cheaper and more durable than the ones I see at the fancy stores and can be used in so many applications.
Trena H. July 18, 2015
...some great ideas already. I'd add a mortar and pestle and a digital thermometer.
boulangere July 18, 2015
Are you or your insurance company paying for it?
ChefJune July 17, 2015
I could write a book on this subject... As one who has taught knifeskills for decades, I would caution buying knives by brand. What is perfect for one may not be that for another. It's important that your chef's knife feel like an extension of your arm. You can only select that in person. I recommend going to a cutlery store where a knowledgeable person can show you the various styles and sizes, and help you make sure the knife you choose "fits."
Meaghan F. July 14, 2015
This is a great time of year to scour yard sales for deals on some of these items - cast iron pans especially.
byb July 14, 2015
Immersion blender! I hadn't realized how much I'd avoided making pureed soups until I bought one. The easiest thing ever to clean and so small for storage purposes.
PieceOfLayerCake July 14, 2015
Chef's knife (I like an agile 8"), paring knife, boning knife, bread knife, balloon whisk, microplane (I like the ones without the handle), good heatproof spatula, French-style rolling pin, set of metal mixing bowls (lightweight and more durable than glass; don't pick up flavors like plastic), sturdy wooden spoon, 9 x 5" loaf pan, cake pans (I have 6", 8", 10", 12" at home, but I think a good pair of 8" would do ya, I like them to have 3" sides, just in case), sheet pans (I have three 13 x 18", and they come in handy), 12 count standard-size muffin pan, large and small saucepan, stock pot, 10" nonstick, 12" and 6" stainless skillet.....I know I'm missing so much....

Here are some links to things I use:
PieceOfLayerCake July 17, 2015
I almost forgot one of my most used items:
ktr July 14, 2015
When I moved across the country and could only bring what fit in my car, one of the few kitchen items I brought was my cast iron skillet.
cdilaura July 14, 2015
Knives: This bread knife is fantastic at slicing through and not smooshing your bread If you're looking to upgrade your knives, we're big fans of the Berti Italian knives -- they've been making knives since 1895 and each blade is hand-forged and holds an extremely sharp edge. They're also striking to display in your kitchen: If you prefer carbon steel knives, our R. Murphy knives are made by an American company that is been making knives since the 1850s. The set made for Food52 has a beautiful handle made of reclaimed wood from an Ohio Chrysler plant (useful and a good story!)
cdilaura July 14, 2015
I use my 8" fry pan daily and love a 5QT saute with a lid for big batches of sautéing -- also useful for going stovetop to oven. Heavy base is a must to avoid burning and also helps with easy cleaning. We love this Belgian brand: Also use my 7QT dutch oven for all my sauces, slow roasting and soup needs. Staub is great because you get the benefit of cast iron on the inside. I'd also recommend their cast iron fry pan for a real kitchen workhorse.
lpowell89 July 17, 2015
I agree! My favorite pan is my cast iron skillet. It's perfect for one-pan stove-to-oven recipes.
Nancy July 13, 2015
If you search the hotline (filling in form next to spy glass about one-third down from top right) with terms like "kitchen equipment" "best appliance" "wedding registry" you will find existing threads addressing these questions of what basic and/or best equipment to get for a kitchen.
Garlic F. July 13, 2015
A good chef's knife or cleaver. Cutting board. Electric kettle. 12" skillet with lid. Medium sized pot with lid.
(0.0) July 13, 2015
Electric kettle! Wouldn't have thought of that, but they are so useful.
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