Unless you’re a student that’s only recently flown the nest, the likelihood is that you already have at least a few bits and bobs to help you prepare a meal that isn’t beans. But, in the off chance that you have forgotten something important or you’d like to grow your kitchen inventory, then this blog should be right up your street.
I hope that the vast majority of you know this already, but you can really tell the difference between a high-quality knife and the one that you got for free with a voucher from Lidl. Good knives may err on the pricier side of kitchen hardware that’ll fit inside a drawer, but they’ll make a world of difference to your preparation speed, safety and accuracy. While some people might recommend picking up a whole set of decent quality knives, I’d recommend just starting with a chef’s knife, paring knife and vegetable knife. These knives will serve almost every purpose that you need them for, and you really won’t regret forking out for them (pun intended).
To go with your fancy new knives, you’ll need a couple of good chopping boards too. While you might already have a couple of plastic boards that you use for everything, I’d recommend investing in an improved pair of boards. The general rule of thumb for chopping boards is that you use a board for meat and a separate board for everything else. I’d recommend picking up a pair of weighted wooden boards – these won’t slide around your work surface when you’re chopping, and they make for a nicer experience than using cold plastic, while also being better for the environment too.
Cast Iron/Non–Stick Skillet
You’ve probably already noticed a bit of a trend in my recommendations, with fewer high-quality tools being better than lots of inferior ones – your cooking medium is no different. A cast iron skillet with a non-stick surface will help you to make pretty much every meal in your repertoire for a lifetime. Once you buy one of these it’s with you for life and, believe me, you’re not going to be complaining about that.
A skillet will see you through most meals, but it’s not exactly well suited to making high volume meals like stews -this is where our friend the slow cooker comes into play. With one of these bad boys, all you have to do is throw in the ingredients and leave it alone for a few hours. You’ll come back to a beautifully cooked stew, casserole or soup, and with barely effort involved on your part, it’ll taste even better.