Thursday, December 28, 2006

Kitchen must-haves

Since getting married I've been scouring the blogosphere for kitchen "must-have" lists.

Then today, this post on Just Hungry inspired me to write my own must-have list for our kitchen!

First I need to describe our eating habits. We're Filipino and therefore all our eating habits are Filipino through and through. However, between Mike and me, we eat a lot of cuisine from around the world.

Here's our list, so far. I'll add items as i think of them.
  1. A rice cooker. I am truly Pinoy: rice for breakfast, rice for lunch, and rice for dinner. As is the case in many Filipino kitchens, then, the rice cooker is the most-used appliance in ours. We actually have two rice cookers! We got two as wedding gifts but decided, under my elder brother's advice, not to return the extra one. Two reasons: (1) rice cookers don't last forever, and (2) a second rice cooker is always useful for parties.

  2. Pots and pans: a few frying pans (both "stick" and non-stick), sauce pans, a stock pot, a big casserole (which I often use for pasta) ... I have too many pots and pans, actually. Our kitchen also has a pressure cooker (used most frequently for karekare), a fry basket (for deep-frying), and ...

  3. A wok. I put this on our wedding registry (to replace my mom's old one) and was delighted when it arrived! Chinese food just isn't the same when it's fried in a pan rather than stir-fried. I've also used the wok for steaming.

  4. Corning Ware. For serving and for baking entrees.

  5. Tiny bowls for "sawsawan," dipping sauces.

  6. Many serving spoons. For some reason, almost all Philippine dishes have a lot of sauce.

  7. Knife and chopping board.

  8. Pyrex measuring cup.

  9. Mixing bowls. More than one!

  10. Wooden spoons.

  11. Mortar and pestle. For crushing garlic and nuts.



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4 comments:

Candice said...

How do you steam from a wok?

rowie said...

Hi Candice,

You can use a steamer basket (bamboo or metal), a heat-safe colander, or a heat-safe metal rack.

If you use a steamer basket or a colander, just pour an inch or two of water in the wok. Place the food in the basket/colander and put the basket/colander in the wok. Make sure that that there is an inch or two of space between the water level and the food (so that the water does not touch the food when the water begins to boil); adjust the amount of water accordingly. Cover either with the wok lid or the steamer basket lid (if it has one). Boil water and steam.

If you use a metal rack, it's the same principle except you use a rack instead of a basket. Again, put an inch or two of water in the wok. Put the rack in the wok and the food in the rack: depending on what food you are steaming, you can put your food directly on the rack (as with crabs), or on a heat-safe dish on the rack (as with fish, if you want to save the broth). Again, there should be enough space between the water level and the rack such that the water does not touch the food when the water boils. Cover the wok and bring the water to a boil; commence steaming.

Toni said...

how about a can opener? :D

rowie said...

Of course, a can opener!!! :)