4 Tools for your Kitchen

In this article we are going to look at some kitchen tools. Of course your kitchen will need a lot more than four different tools, but we wanted to keep the list short and manageable.

So, here are our top four tools to help you have an easier time while cooking. Most of them are inexpensive and super useful so that makes them a great investment.

None of the tools we talk about today need any electricity, they are all manually operated.

The first one on the list is a fine mesh skimmer.

Fine Mesh Skimmer

This is a great tool to have is you are trying to skim the fat and other floating giblets out of your stock. It is way more efficient than using a ladle in two ways.

The first being the amount of time it saves you. There is a certain skill you need to be able to take just the very top off of your stock while using a ladle. Not so with a fine mesh skimmer.

Just dunk it in and scoop away.

The other way the skimmer is more efficient than a ladle is that it wastes way less of the good part of the stock. The watery part will easily flow right through and back into the pot.

Fine mesh strainers are available either online or if you need it sooner check the closest Asian grocery store.

You can also use one of these to keep your oil clean while you are deep frying. If you keep leaving the little bits of breading that fall off in your oil they will eventually burn.

This leads to burnt flavors in your food, which no one wants.

Offset Spatula

This is a great tool that most people only associate with cake decorating. However, it is super useful for lifting foods making it a must have tool in your kitchen if you do a lot of baking.

Offset spatulas are one of the best tools you will come across for plating foods. Plating food simply means moving food from the container it was cooked in to the plate you plan to serve it on.

Disher

These are commonly known as ice cream scoopers, but the formal name is a disher. Dishers are designed for portion control.

They really come in handy for things like cookie dough where you need to repeatedly portion out of a large mixing bowl.

Be sure to check for the size of the disher. They might all appear similar but the better ones will come with numbers imprinted on them. Just like with the thickness of wires and needles, the bigger the number means the smaller the scoop.

Another thing to consider when looking for a disher is to be sure it comes with the scraping mechanism. This is usually operated by pressing it with your thumb or squeezing the handle. The scraper will separate the contents from the disher.

This will save you a ton of time and also keep the shape of your cookies uniform.

Microplane Zester

These are most commonly used for getting the outermost layer of a citrus fruit separated from the rest of the fruit. Recipes often call for zesting oranges, limes or lemons.

The reality is that you can use it for cheeses, garlic and even chocolate. This makes adding fresh garlic to a marinade much easier than mincing.

Wrapping it all Up

If you found this article useful or have any of your own favorite kitchen tools, let us know in the comments below!

5 Ways to Save Time in the Kitchen

This is our first post in a series that is aimed at making your cooking experience better. We focus on Thai cooking, especially the tools you need and great recipes. Here we show you how to be more efficient in the kitchen in a general way.

If you are new to Thai cooking the variety of ingredients and specialized tools can seem a little daunting. This article is great to help you stay organized so you can concentrate on the more important things and enjoy making your meals.

As you can probably guess, cooking Thai food that has a lot of ingredients forces you to work faster than you would if you were grilling outside or baking in the oven.

So today I want to share with you five tips that I have learned from my experience that will help make your cooking more efficient and faster. Trust me, it is a really good feeling when you finish cooking a lot faster than you thought you would without burning anything and being able to eat a great meal.

Tip One: Sharp knife

Invest in a sharpening stone. Your knife does not need to be expensive but it is important that its sharp. You will be amazed how much faster your cooking goes when your knife just slides through.

There is also a safety component to having a sharp knife. Dull knives cut inconsistently and require a lot more force to get them to cut. With a sharp knife you need less effort and gain more predictability.

Having a sharp knife is like swimming downstream rather than up, so if your knife squishes your tomato before it will cuts it, it’s probably time to spend some time sharpening it.

Tip Two: Bench Scraper

A nifty little tool that doesn’t cost very much but saves you a lot of time when you’ve gotta move something from here, to there. It is basically a metal rectangle with a plastic handle.

You can use it to scrape smaller items off your cutting board and move them to a pan. This is especially helpful if you have a large cutting board or have multiple ingredients cut up at one time that need to be cooked at separate times.

Tip Three: Have a nearby garbage bowl

Rather than having to every time take your garbage and turn around and walk it over to the garbage it is very helpful to have the garbage right next to where you are working. If you end up walking across the kitchen, inevitably something always falls on the floor along the way.

If your kitchen set up allows for it you should rearrange if you find yourself walking around with scraps in your hand. This also lets you continue cooking without interruptions. Remember, the less movement changes you make while you’re cooking, the more time it saves you.

Tip Four: Keep a wet towel under your cutting board

The fact is that it’s safer when your board is not moving while you are cutting. This also saves a lot of time when you are not constantly chasing your board around the counter when you are cutting.

Having a stable surface makes for a fast and efficient cutting and when you’re done, you can always use this to clean your counter.

Tip Five: Plan your cooking

Here is a step that can save you a lot of time so before you start do a quick mental run through of what you need to do. Some steps require marinating or other time intensive processes. This also includes the order it is best to do it in and if there is anything that can be done at the same time.

This can be especially helpful if you can remember to let ingredients you plan to cook warm up to room temperature. When you let meat warm up like this it will spend less time cooking. Less time on the heat means less moisture loss and tastier meats.

Remember too, that you do not always need to have everything cut up and ready to go before you can start cooking. For example, I keep my onion or garlic slow cooking on low heat. This can happen in the background while I am cutting other things that go into the wok afterwards.

We hope you found this article informative. Make a point to visit us again as we will be making regular posts and helping you become a great Thai chef.