How To Beef Up Your Kitchen Stock!

by Jen Wanous

I found an immersion blender on the street just now when I was taking my pup Jaxson for his evening stroll. There are few things better than finding a bargain and what can be a better bargain than free!? One of the many reasons why I love New York! Of course, I steer clear of any plush material that might harbor any slumber party bugs, but by and large, there are some good finds out there.  A friend once told me that I was “crafty” as I plucked a couple of basil leaves from her plant for dinner, though I read her subtext loud and clear. Fickle, frugal, or just plain cheap, call it what you will, I’m one resourceful lady who makes the best out of what I have.

I took my new found emersion blender (and ice cube trays!) home and dunked them all in warm soapy water. It got me thinking about how I have equipped my kitchen. Half of my kitchen is outfitted with odd and ends that I’ve acquired from California to Florida. I cherish my grandmother’s stainless steel pots that I use daily. My homemade hummus would not be nearly as good without the aid of my mini food processor, found on the corner of Sterling and Vanderbilt. And then there’s the white Pyrex bowl with an asterisk blue border that reminds me of one my mom used to have in her kitchen. I built my collection with found and acquired items alike and some coveted big-ticket items that make for one highly functional (yet tiny NYC) kitchen.

My friends Robin and Ben were just over and they said they needed to better equip their kitchen. “We have one good thing in all our kitchen stuff, like one good knife and one good pan.” That’s a great place to start! Here are some other tips on how to beef up your kitchen stock.

1. Have one good (very) sharp knife. You can take your knife to a sharpener or get this device that will help you keep it sharp. If you’re feeling ambitious, watch this on how to sharpen your own knife.

2. Get things that are multi purposed. Try not to get equipment that serves one function like a bread machine or an egg slicer. Your kitchen is too small for those random things. Instead, build out the basics and use them creatively!

3. Make a wish list for your birthday or holidays. This way you can stock up on some fancy items like a blender or that sharp knife (see above).

4. Have a zester! I love my Microplane. I add lemon or orange zest to things from cobbler to pasta. You can also use it for fresh ground nutmeg (adds that sophisticated touch to your food). I travel with mine and am always afraid security will confiscate it. :)

5. Read up on how-to. Cookbooks come in many varieties. Two of my favorites include the Joy of Cooking and Supper Natural Cooking by Heidi Swanson. (Also, check out her blog here.)

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One Comment to “How To Beef Up Your Kitchen Stock!”

  1. When I was at the Dekalb Farmer’s Market yesterday, there was a truck parked next to me and a bumper sticker that read “RESPECT MY HUSTLE.” YOU KNOW I THOUGHT OF YOU! love you.

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