I love a great ambiance while I'm cooking. I play music and like the fragrant candles burning on the corner of my island. It makes me feel relaxed and luxurious in the kitchen. My kids can even recognize the scents, "Jo Malone citrus today, that Anthropologie gardenia one, vanilla cinnamon, they ask?"
One of my favorite scents for a kitchen, a guest room or a bathroom is the Jo Malone, citrus blend. Grapefruit, lemon and orange, and its subtle too. Pricey but decadent. Get some candles and change your working or cooking environment to a lux one!
This kitchen must have item is my new obsession! I already love the smaller version as a food mover but this one is not only a great tool for cakes, but I use it for pie crust and even more often for slicing a roast. I love to slice it, and then move it neatly to a platter. It is so easy and so clean and neat and makes for a great presentation. I have two of these one for meat and fleish meals, and one for cheesecake.
Just $8.62 on Amazon.com
Need a great, gorgeous, whimsical gift for that someone who has everything?
I love these outrageous peppermills from mbpeppermills.com
These products are handcrafted and made from natural woods. They are unique and have many wood color and shape varieties. It's hard to choose which I like best. I'm definitely saving up for a pair!
Available at mbpeppermills.com for $225 - $375 Splurgy, and super special but totally unusual and creative!
Chic, functional and a total necessity for any cook. This kitchen timer does not take up counter space because its a magnet and integrates into any other appliance, it almost looks like a part of it.
Available on http://www.evasolo.com/Kitchenware/EN-Magnetisk-minutur/567770/
I love sharing new cookbooks with GKC readers and especially appreciate the great feedback and support you show the authors. Today, I have a totally different cookbook for you, a book that is more than a cookbook, yes, tons of great recipes, but also pop culture, history and a chance to hear from some great Jewish personalities.
"One Egg Is A Fortune” is the award-winning new cookbook by Judy Kempler and Pnina Jacobson! This unique cookbook gives you the chance to get to know fifty well-known Jewish figures from around the world. And while each person tells a different story, their anecdotes reveal that the enjoyment of food is the common thread that binds us together and showcases the diversity of Jewish life. You will meet personalities such as Dennis Ross, Marlee Matlin, Alan Dershowitz, Neshama Carlebach, Dudu Fisher and so many others. You can pore over the stunning food and lifestyle photography and then savor over 100 mouth-watering recipes with clear, easy-to-follow instructions.
Check out these sneak peak recipes:
Baked Fish a’la Dudu by Dudu Fischer
Fish Quenelles with Two Sauces
Sweet Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies by Marlee Matlin
Great in the kitchen or on the coffee table and the best gift. "One Egg Is A Fortune” available on GKC today.
Get 1 book for $18, 3 for $50 or 10 for $140 and give one to all your family and friends! Order here now!
Winner of SIX international awards!
• Best in the World 2012 Gourmand World Cookbook Awards-Australia-Pacific Fundraising, Charity and Community
• Silver Award for cookbooks 2012 IPPY -World’s Largest Book Awards Contest (U.S.A.)
• Winner - 2012 The National Indie Excellence Awards - Cookbooks- General (U.S.A.)
• Certificate of Merit Cookbooks -1010 Printing International Limited - 2012 The Premier Print Awards
• Silver Award Cookbooks - 1010 Printing International Limited - 2012 Gold Ink Awards
• Winner - The 2012 USA Best Book Awards - Cookbooks: International
Great gift item! I love this hostess gift. I think a salt and pepper grinder are a must have in the kitchen. And the personalization of these make them an extra special gift.
Available at Williams-Sonoma.com for $49.95
Perfect for indoor grilling all year long, a grill pan is a GKC essential cooking tool. I use it for grilled everything from chicken, to steak, to fish. The contoured texture even gives great grill marks and makes you feel like its warm outside, well kinda.
Here are my choices,
1. Great value, this price makes it a no-brainer. Cast iron and free shipping. Go for it. Click here.
2. This is the one that I own and have been using for over 10 years. Heats well, cooks evenly, and is well made. I recommend it for a good price, high quality item that is still not too expensive for a kitchen essential.
3. This is a splurge item. I admit, I want one too. Anything made by Le Crueset is worth the price in quality and great taste. Looks good, is made with the highest quality materials and will last a lifetime. Buy one and send me a pic of it so that I can drool
Fairway market has chili powders online! I bought them recently and they had an OU on the container.
These are pure spices not blends. Please confirm before purchasing. They have a great selection.
Ancho Chili Powder
Chipolte Chili Powder
And in the store they have Chipolte Chili in Adobe Sauce made by Roland with an OU
All this talk about ramen noodles makes me hungry for ramen noodles now. I'm making some Udon Soup for dinner and serving it in these great Noodle Soup bowls. I like them for the Beef and Broccoli with Ramen Noodles too. They come in fantastic colors like blue, brown, black, cranberry, white, and olive. I like to use different colors together.
Available at Uncommon Goods for $32
This is one of my most favorite items! I love keeping salt next to the cook top. But without one of these boxes, the salt starts to clump or dry out too much. This one is reasonably priced and very nice looking.
Available online only from Williams-Sonoma.com for $19.95
Two must have items for Meyer lemon season, a lemon zester or microplane and a lemon juicer. I use my microplane regularly for zesting lemons (it zests very finely so that you just get the zest not the bitter pith) and also for grating ginger and garlic. I love the juicer because it extracts a large amount of juice without seeds in a flash. Both are dishwasher safe so you have no hesitation about using them.
Lemon Juicer $7.40
It’s doughnut time! And that can mean many things to all different people. For me, I make the whole variety all week, from Oreo Stuffed Doughnuts, Doughnut Ice cream sandwiches (these are semi-homemade so go for it, they are so easy), Zepolles, Cinnamon Sugar Doughnut Holes, to my favorites, Baked Doughnuts. Whatever you are making, you need a few essential pieces of equipment.
Baked doughnuts are awesome and taste cake-like. If you serve them warm, no one will even miss the frying. But in order to get that perfect doughnut shape, you need the pan. I have the mini version and use it all year round. For bigger doughnuts, get the regular size.
The DeLonghi fryer is a great item if you have room in your kitchen. I use it for French fries, doughnuts, fried chicken and schnitzel. It has great safety features built in to prevent accidental burning and it creates lighter fried foods. It’s a good splurge piece if you like the real deal doughnut too.
Lastly, a powdered sugar duster is a must have item! I use it for everything from cakes to French toast, but it is the perfect way to dust those doughnuts with powdered sugar. It creates precise and light powdered sugar dust over anything.
It’s latke time and that means getting a few essential pieces of equipment to make sure your latkes come out perfect every time. I tend to buy the inexpensive pieces without much thought and wait for a special sale or a holiday to splurge on items like hi-quality pots and pans. Remember though, these items are well worth the price because they last years, really a lot of years, and they really improve your cooking because they do not burn on the bottom, they conduct heat very well, and cook food more evenly by staying hot. I personally own all of these essential latke cooking equipment and with the addition of these great latke recipes, I make awesome latkes every Hanukah.
1. Nonpro Grip EZ Splatter Strainer
I love a splatter guard because it keeps my kitchen from getting too greasy while I fry up latkes or any other fried food, like doughnuts. I use it when I brown chicken too so it gets plenty of year round use.
2. OXO Silicone Flexible Pancake Turner
This is technically a pancake turner. I use it to flip latkes though because its wide enough for big latkes and the holes drain some of the oil that may otherwise flip with your latke. I like latkes crispy not greasy and this does the trick.
3. Taylor Candy Stainless Steel Thermometer
I use this thermometer to make sure the oil stays hot but not too hot while frying (about 350 degrees is perfect). It’s great because it’s a candy thermometer too so all the Purim peanut brittle and caramel sauces come out perfect with this too.
4. Le Creuset Enameled Cast Iron Skillet
Splurge on this!!! Great for latkes, omelettes, sautéing, pasta dishes or browning chicken. It’s worth every penny.
5. OXO Grips 3-piece Angled Measuring Cups
I use these everyday. For everything so I recommend them for measuring everything for every recipe. No more bending over to check the amount of liquid ingredients in the cup, you can check from above, extra markings for precision measurements, and it comes in a set of three. It’s a kitchen essential.
6. Cuisineart DFP 14BCN Processor (Brushed Stainless Steel)
Love my Cuisinart! I have a few and think you need one too.
7. If it’s too much, go with a good grater, like the Edgeware set. It has multiple settings for all sorts of uses. Plus the colors are terrific and make kashrut easier.
The Kosher Cook always has the newest and most useful kosher cooking tools. This year at Kosherfest they displayed some great new Hanukah items. Here are a few of my favorites.
Chanukah Linzer Cookie Cutter Set: The set includes the Chanukah cookie cutters that can be used on their own or to create those fabulous double cut out images on Linzer cookies.
Chanukah Reusable Ice Cubes: So cute and colorful! Little dreidels that freeze and chill your drink and do not dilute it. Use and reuse them.
Chanukah Potato Latke Molds: They come in two shapes, dreidels and Star of David. And they work for both latkes and pancakes. Chanukah shapes are not just for cookies anymore!
All these cute items are available at theKosherCook.com. And make sure to check out their best selling items, like Kosher stickers, spatulas, and silicone molds too.
Where have these brilliant angled measuring cups been all my life? They let you accurately gauge the amount of liquid in the cup by simply looking down, instead of squatting in front of the cup. The 1-cup measure is especially good for small quantities, like the lime juice for my corn salad. Oxo makes great kitchen products and I love these!
Oxo 3 piece set $19.99, available at oxo.com
Part history book, part handbook, part cookbook, this book was so much fun to read. It covers every facet of the ancient hobby of beekeeping, from how to manage hives safely to harvesting one's own honey, and ideas for how to use honey and beeswax. Detailed instructions for making candles, furniture polish, beauty products, and nearly 100 honey-themed recipes are included. Although it made me daydream about becoming a beekeeper, my family is happy that I am sticking to making lots of honey glazed apples.
Available at amazon.com for $24
How smart is this? I wish this had been around a few years ago! Just place the popsicle stick into the slot (which has a great grip) and no more ruined tops or sticky, super, super sticky hands. Flip it over and it holds an ice cream cone. Great colors, dishwasher safe too!
Get it on Amazon for $10
On a recent trip to San Francisco, I found the glass work by Travis Sandoval, travissandovalglass.com. Trained by famous glass artisan, Dale Chihuly, his work is colorful and super functional. Sandoval's wife is a pastry chef at San Francisco's Taste caterers and this has provided him with both inspiration and important details about size and use of his pieces. My new favorites are the colorful tumblers. The shape is chic, whimsical, yet formal enough for my table. The colors are exquisite.
Check out his work at travissandovalglass.com and order at email@example.com
My pizza wheel is too dull and does not slice through the crust of the pizza without reverse back and forth motion. Frustrating to make gorgeous and delicious homemade pizza and not cut through it well. Quirky.com has the solution! They make a cool, dual blade pizza wheel that actually works well and glides through the slicing. Strong, sharp, easy to use and clean, it’s an inexpensive, great addition to your kitchen tools.
Pizza wheel, made by Quirky.com sells for $12.99
Looking for the perfect guy gift? The "I don't know what to bring" fun item that will get a lot of laughs? This carrier is perfect for transporting beer out to a party in style. I gave it to friends recently filled with some special beers from around the world. You can even personalize it!
Available meriwetherfieldgear.com for $40
We are serving ice cream and sorbet everyday on these hot summer days which got me searching for the best ice cream scoop around. It's not hard to find the winner because its the leading brand in ice cream parlors and has been around since 1933 and just get better and better. These ice cream scoops have heat conductive fluids sealed within the handle. So as you scoop, it softens the ice cream to form a perfect scoop.
Made by Zeroll in many sizes and available at Amazon.com $17- $20
This coffee maker is simply breathtaking! Forgive me for posting indulgent items two weeks in a row but this just could not wait. All you see is the graceful spout. Everything else is underneath the cabinet - including a professional grade grinder, milk frother, espresso maker and coffee brewer. Set down your cup and choose your drink using a counter-mounter touch pad or your wireless iphone or ipad. Ingenious, sleek, super cool. I may need to renovate my kitchen just to get one!
$6500 from www.scanomat.com
Dream big, object of desire
By Eldorado Stone this Artisan Fire Bowl is so outrageous and fantastic! It doubles as a picnic table with the separate wood top (maybe my husband will go for it now?!?!) It's a gas fire pit which makes it even cleaner and more usable. I wish I could have one!
Available at www.eldoradostone.com for $2500
These great skewers have double prongs to keep food in place while you flip it. Stainless steel and dishwasher safe. You can buy them with or without the rack which keeps food a little of the grill to prevent sticking.
Skewers are $30 for 6, available at rosleusa.com