Dear kitchens, if you are entering the wonderful world of cooking, the most important thing is the desire to learn and, above all, to enjoy what you do.
You may need a series of utensils to take your first steps. That's why I want to tell you some basics that you should have. Of course, you do not have to buy them all at once, but it is good to know it and little by little invest in little gadgets.
The rule of thumb is that as you invest, do so in quality products. It is preferable that you buy little and good, to be guided by offers of sets of bad pots or pans that are very thin, with dubious quality coatings and that in the end the food ends up sticking. Make sure they have a thick bottom and are heavy. Shop at hardware stores or specialized kitchen stores. Usually large surfaces have fairly decent kitchen sections.
When you get a taste of the matter, you will find dozens of them and you will have to learn to manage the space so you do not have to leave your home. Until then, write down these few to include on your shopping list:
Small saucepan: where you can heat water, milk, a soup, prepare a sauce, rice or, for example, a rich apple sauce. I am not a friend of the microwave and this saucepan is perfect for making small portions for 1 or 2 people.
Medium casserole: if you like to prepare more quantity or are waiting for guests, get a larger casserole of 2-3 liters capacity or even up to 8 liters, it depends on who you are at home. This larger saucepan will allow you to cook pasta, make a puree, a meat or chicken stew, some legumes or a bechamel sauce.
Perhaps many of you are not thinking of buying a pot of these characteristics because you do not see it necessary. But it is a good gift that they can give you or to give to someone who becomes independent. The one I have was a gift from some friends, I have a lot of affection for it and it saves me a lot of time in the kitchen, for me very precious.
In large stores you can find many at a good price and good.
Mine is made of stainless steel, two working pressures and a 4 liter capacity. I use it a lot: to make broths, meat stews, stew, purees, cook vegetables.
Pans and lid
3. Pans and lid
I recommend that you invest in some good frying pans, with a thick bottom and of different sizes. It is also highly recommended that you get a lid for the pan to avoid splashing.
Small frying pan 20-22 cm in diameter. This size is ideal for making a good potato omelette, scrambled eggs, fried or grilled eggs, making some frying, setting up a quick dinner like a nice onion, preparing a stir-fry, a sauce, preparing some delicious pancakes or taking the blanket , a movie and a bowl of rich homemade spiced popcorn.
Large frying pan 28-30 cm in diameter. For steaks, grilled fish, small stews, for example rice for two.
Tips to avoid damaging the non-stick: do not use metal utensils, do not pour water into the pan while it is still hot and when washing it, use the sponge and not the scourer part. I do not recommend putting them in the dishwasher.
Knives, scissors and cutting board
Lace or peeler: what would I do without my lace. It is very manageable. Always sharp, ideal for precision peeling and cutting.
Chef's or chef's knife: wide-edged, I love to cut vegetables, chop pieces of meat or fish.
Scissors: among other uses, I find it very necessary to cut and clean pieces of meat, chicken, fish.
Cutting board: you will find them made of wood or plastic. The wooden ones are beautiful, but because of the porous material they are less hygienic, that's why I recommend plastic. Tip: Ideally, use a different table depending on whether it is vegetables, meat or fish to avoid cross contamination. If you only have one board, be sure to clean it well after use with a brush and if necessary add a few drops of bleach to thoroughly disinfect.
Saucepan, ladle and skimmer
If you have to serve a puree, cream, soup you will need a saucepan. Vegetable or meat stews with sauce will be served much better with a ladle. When it comes to grilling large fish, taking a portion of cake or lasagna out of the oven will help you a lot to have a slotted spoon. The best thing is to buy a kit in which all the elements usually come and some more.
It is also interesting to have a set of wooden spoons, they are very interesting to stir food and not grate the pans, pots, etc., there are also others made of Teflon, plastic, etc. prepared to withstand temperature, but I like wood better and it is usually cheaper than the others.
In the houses that I have shared I have always come across horrible mixers. Low power, which soon overheats and the engine smells funny. In fact on one occasion when passing a puree, the mixer began to make a strange noise accompanied by a disturbing smell until it stopped. It did not work again, the engine had literally blown.
Finally, after several dire experiences, I invested in a good mixer. A power of 600W, less than that power I do not recommend. It has two functions: the normal and another turbo. It has some very practical accessories: a 600ml glass in which to make, for example, a smoothie, mayonnaise, pancake batter, or a delicious pesto sauce. If you dare with baking, bring a whisk to whip whites or cream and a 350ml mincer to mince meat, nuts and vegetables.
With this utensil you can sift flour, drain the pasta after cooking, strain a broth, filter a puree from possible stumbling or strands, sprinkle cocoa powder or icing sugar on top of any of your desserts. You can have strainers of various sizes.
Kitchen scale or measuring cup
The scale is very necessary to weigh the ingredients of the recipes, and more in the pastry ones that you must be precise because in the end it is pure chemistry and as you go or fall short the recipe does not come out. I recommend that you buy it with a tare function, that will allow you to zero the weight while you continue adding more ingredients to the container. Also see that it weighs a maximum of 2 to 5 kg.
There are also measuring glasses in which the measurements in grams of different dry foods are marked, usually flour, rice, sugar and liquids in milliliters. It is another good option and you will never have battery problems like with scales.
4 texture grater
Very versatile. It is ideal for making breadcrumbs, grating tomato for a morning toast or for a sauce, grating cheese to gratin your dishes, grating vegetables for a salad or cake, grating the peel of citrus fruits and chocolate, with the finest, for some dessert, and the one with 3 blades is ideal for making potato chips and preparing a potato omelette.
Bowls of different sizes
It is essential to have several bowls of different sizes to mix, for example, your bread dough, pie, pizza, the dough for the meatballs and the dough for a sponge cake or cookies. Other interesting are some aluminum bowls with a lid and accessories, they are very comfortable to store food in the fridge and the accessories allow us to scratch them in the bowl itself, they are somewhat more expensive but they are worth it.
Storage and conservation
You must have a place to store your rich creations and keep them both in the refrigerator and in the freezer, so I recommend the following items:
Glass containers: preferable to plastic. It is more hygienic and healthy for me. Cook with foresight and save rations for other days. I use them to better store and preserve fresh ingredients and my food products (seeds, spices, flours, sugar, nuts ...)
Clear and aluminum foil: use to cover and protect food from drying out or going bad. I do not advise you to cook in the oven with aluminum foil, better use specific baking paper.
Airtight bags: I find them ideal for storing packages of vegetables, whole or cut, in the freezer and then making it easier for me to make a recipe, as well as pieces of meat, chicken, fish, sliced bread, bones and bones for broths.
Clothespins and rubber bands: the clothespins or specific ones sold in the kitchen section are for me basic, like the rubber bands to close a package or bag and that the content remains as hermetic as possible and does not spoil.
If you have an oven, I recommend that you buy a glass or ceramic dish to get started in roasts or in the world of baking, and greaseproof paper.
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