Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Kitchen Utensils

I recently won a prize on a culinary radio show for calling in with my favorite kitchen utensil -- which was a vegetable peeler. I use it many times daily and usually take one when we travel, so it must be my favorite. As I said on the radio, it does pay to buy the name brand vs. the 2 for $1 peelers as they work much better and last longer.
My daughter is taking "Culinary Arts" (does this mean she may cook something?) But, in order to be allowed to cook in the school kitchen, they must pass a test about kitchen utensils, safety, food handling and the food pyramid (she did not know if it was the newly revised one or not.) I was informed by my daughter that I have not used the correct names for utensils -- what I have called a spatula is actually a turner and that we do not own a metal spatula.
Ina Garten says her favorite utensil is an OXO julienne peeler. Another chef said tongs with a spring hinge are perfect for lifting and turning items on the grill without piercing them and loosing juices (this was also on tonight's Culinary Arts review test). A Chinese spider (a sort of round spoon with holes) was the preferred utensil for another chef, who used it for a variety of applications. My husband loves his "Graham Kerr" knife/scraper combo as recommended by the current favorite TV chef, Alton Brown.