Let’s face it. We all have to cook, at least some days, and to cook properly we need equipment, I know many young people, and some elderly who do not cook or don’t like to cook, but eventually they are forced to doing what they loathe.
All professionals insist on using high-quality pots and pans. They are the fundamentals of good cooking, beside prime ingredients, ovens, ranges, and knowledge.
People who cook most of their meals should strive to buy sturdy, functional, and well-designed equipment. They cost a little more than run-of-the-mill inexpensive stuff, but last a lifetime f well maintained and not abused. Buying inferior quality pots and pans sold at discount prices is false economy.
Aluminium pots warp, pans bend and require more oil or fat, but more importantly, the food in a warped pan cooks unevenly. Aluminium pots have been proven to be unhealthy.
The best metal for pots and pans is copper, but it must be lined with tin, and renewed annually, or the manufacturer must line it with stainless steel permanently which only technologically advanced companies can do.
Most cooks, in western countries, prefer stainless steel, heavy-bottom pots and pans furnished with layered metals including copper.
Cast iron pots lines with enamel are highly valued by chefs for stews, and braising. They distribute heat evenly, but take a long time to get hot.
These days, many manufacturers use copper lined with stainless steel that last a long time. It is important to buy the appropriate size of pot and pan for the intended use and the number of people you want to and need to cook for. A large pot will require more fat than you want to use for one or two portions.
Here is a list of basic equipment to get started. You can expand it if and when the need arises.
Four-litre straight-sided saucepot (can be used for stews and/or stocks)
Small stainless steel frying pan or 26-cm. diameter non-stick pan for eggs sunny side up
Small stainless steel pots for sautéing small amounts of food or for cooking sauces in small quantitities]
Assorted stainless steel mixing bowls
Pressure cooker (optional)
Counter top mixer or hand held blender
Immersion blender or cream soups, pureeing
Once you have bought the pts and pans, you can start thinking about proper kitchen tools.
Without them no cook can function efficiently.
Here are the basics:
Thin flexible spatula
Set of chef’s knives (carbon steel 25 cm chef’s knife, boning knife, 10cm. Paring knife, serrated bread knife, melon baler. Full-length rosewood handle knives are recommended).
Heat-resistant silicon scraper and spatula
If you like to BBQ, select a sturdy one, from a well-established manufacturer.
Always try to buy from a restaurant and hotel supply company. They offer a large choice and carry sturdy equipment. Their prices are much lower than those of retailers, but you may not be able to buy from some since they are usually located in large cities. These days, a few supply companies take orders via the Internet, but very specific, if and when you decide to place an order and remember that packaging and shipping costs must be borne by you.