Now that the busy holiday season is over, I’m trying to get excited about cooking again. I’ve finally figured out over the years that it’s not the actual cooking that I dislike. It’s the clean up after. And I’m not too fond of the grocery shopping either.
To kick off the new year, I treated myself to a new stainless steel pan at Williams Sonoma. Please don’t judge! I got it on sale and even then, it is by far the most expensive pan I have ever bought.
The great thing about this pan is that it’s dishwasher safe and seems to cook stuff without the “stuck-on” problem I have had with other stainless pans. I know you are probably thinking, “Just get non-stick!”. But the truth is that I have non-stick and it has to be hand washed. I’m not going to say too much about this, since I feel like I’ve been a bit of a Debbie Downer lately: If you have non-stick cookware and the coating is flaking off, it’s time to throw it away. Heat + broken down chemicals = bad for you. I’ll leave the Googling to you!
After my Wooden Spoon freak out last Friday, I went through and evaluated all of mine and threw away 3. I replaced them with a bamboo 3-pack from Target that was $2.99. I think the brand was Chefmate, but I couldn’t find them online to link to. Beware of the Giada 2-pack that is more expensive and is getting awful reviews online. Apparently, they splinter immediately. Woops! The bamboo ones I got seem really sturdy and I always put them in the dishwasher. I am not hand washing wooden spoons!
Something else I use in the kitchen, and certain people have made fun of me for (you know who you are) is:
These are used to clean your garbage disposal. I know you can use citrus peel. But if you don’t eat oranges every week, these are nice to have around. I usually buy mine at Bed Bath And Beyond, but Amazon has it as well.
Dishes! I love these bowls:
They come in tons of different colors and even a smaller mini size. Mine are a kelly green color that they appear not to have anymore. You can shop for them here.
I recently bought:
I’m really digging all of West Elm’s new stuff. I haven’t gotten to use my plates yet, but they are on sale now.
Something else I’ve had in my kitchen forever are these:
My Aunt Chris and Uncle Dan gave these to us along with some stainless utensils for a shower gift. We’ll be married 15 years in a couple months and they all look practically brand new. (A note to all smart asses: Yes, I have used them!) You can buy them here.
Last but not least, is my red Mario Batalli dutch oven from Crate and Barrel.
Even though I have to hand wash it, it’s red and I love it! It is a measure of my devotion and what a good job it does, that I use it all the time even with the extra clean up needed.
What are your favorite kitchen tools? Any new recipes you want to recommend? There’s a bean stew that I saw over at Smitten Kitchen that I want to try for tonight. We’ll see… Have a great weekend!
PS Check back on Sunday. I think I’m doing a giveaway, and I’ll be linking to a cool site run by a friend I’ve made through blogging.