My Top 10 Kitchen Utensils – of the manual variety… Plus One…

There are some things I just could not do without in my kitchen and some things that are sentimental favourites. Here is the what and why of my Top 10 Kitchen Utensils….

My all time favourite things in my kitchen are not all that special, except to me, I use most of them everyday, sometimes several times and for multiple applications, quite simply, I could not function with out them.

I haven’t ranked them one to ten, so I’ll dive right in with the first, from the bottom in the photo.

All 10 overhead

The Humble Peeler – I love this peeler – it is about 7 years old now and still has a wickedly sharp blade, the toughest Queensland Blue is no match for this monster and it makes quick work of kilos of apples and pears for Reggie’s fruit blends.

Then comes the antique Bone Handled Salad Servers – I love these guys.  Anything that makes it to the table in a bowl for everyone to share, salad, veggies, casserole, whatever, gets these plonked in it.  They are beautiful and perfect in form and function.

The Wooden Spoon – duh, this is a no-brainer, multi-purpose plus.  I love this one especially for it’s flat edge, perfect for de-clumping cooking mince, stirring custard, wielding overhead chasing kids ogre-style, prising reluctant ring-pulls up from tinned goods, I could go on for ages.  I think there must be about 6 lurking about my various utensil pots and drawers, but this is my go-to-guy, every time.

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Best invention ever – Silicon Spoon!  I prefer this over a silicon scraper, mainly because a scraper is so danged efficient, there is nothing left in the bowl for the kids to lick.  There is nothing this baby cannot handle – dough, batter, you name it, it can do it.

This gadget is magic – there has not been a lid invented that this can’t open, from the narrowest-necked bottle to super wide-mouthed jars, this dude has their number.  I have no idea where it came from, it was in the Husband’s junk drawer when we first shacked up.  When I discovered it’s greatness, I think I fell a bit more in love with him (Husband, not gadget…).

Ahh, the Mixing Bowl.  This beauty is over 100 years old and weighs about 10kg.  It can handle the biggest batches of stuff I could ever hope to make, with ease.  I once made a batch of Anzac Biscuits in it that yielded 10 dozen!  Yikes, it took forever to get them all cooked and about twice as quick for them to be demolished shearing time – the things we do.  The glaze, both inside and out of the bowl is worn and crackled with age and use and really is the most beautiful thing.

This Round Cake Tin is quite a new addition to my kitchen and quite frankly I’m not sure how I survived without it.  The bottom comes out of the pan and has a silicon lip bit that means it seals water tight, so the runniest batter doesn’t leak everywhere.  The non-stick coating is so good, that I only use the merest hint of butter or spray-oil for greasing and we are good to go.  I love this, and who doesn’t love a pretty round cake, straight out of the oven?

Collage 1

The Jam Funnel – it was my Great Grandmother’s and a few years ago during a monster jam making session, my mum gave it to me.  It’s dented and battered, but by far the best darned jam funnel in the universe; it has a lovely narrow opening at the bottom, so every jar I’ve ever wanted to put jam in fits just so.  I have 3 new jam funnels (really, why?), that I should just take to the Op Shop as they are never going to be able to compete with this one.

Bread Tins, they just don’t make them like that any more; big, heavy, robust workhorses that just keep on keeping on.  How many hundreds of loaves have come out of them, I have no idea, again they are a family thing, my mum’s before me and her mother’s before that.  They have never warped or buckled, even when I have burnt the bejesus out of bread and plunged them straight into a sink full of water, bread and all.  Solid and dependable (maybe Taureans?).

The Decent Cooling Rack.  Do Not, I repeat, Do Not purchase a flimsy cooling rack.  Hunt around until you find one that is really sturdy, put it on a flat surface and push down in the middle with the flat of your hand, if it touches the surface underneath, it is not for you or your kitchen.  This one takes some serious weight and is a good size, nice and large to fit dozens of biscuits, a couple of loaves or even double as a trivet for my huge cast iron casserole dish.  Just gotta love it.

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And here it is, my Plus One.  Half way through writing this post I had an awfully large-forehead-smacking moment!  How on earth could I have forgotten THE MOST IMPORTANT thing in my kitchen?  The Tablespoon – you know the one, your Granny would have had a couple, huge old things that are just the best.  This one feels like an extension of my hand, weighted just right, perfectly balanced.  Whomever owned it before me was also right-handed, see the flat edge at the top of the spoon?  How many hundreds of meals and things must it have stirred to wear the metal away to make the perfect edge?  It has been worn to knife-edge sharpness and is the best tool I have ever discovered for scraping the seeds out of pumpkin.  My Mother-In-Law has given me three (yes, three – lucky me) of them and they are all in high rotation, but this one is always my first choice.  Is it weird or strange to think of an inanimate object as a friend?

Table Spoon

OK, that’s me and my Top 10 Kitchen Utensils.  Please tell me what ranks right up there in your kitchen, I would love to hear all about it.




8 thoughts on “My Top 10 Kitchen Utensils – of the manual variety… Plus One…

  1. Ruth says:

    Lovely post – I love old silver spoons, we have so many odd ones floating in our draws – Except for soup spoons. My boyfriend hates them- and has hidden them, what a strange fellow!

  2. shaninottingham says:

    great looking blog….i am not a foodie, but i love history of objects…so your post was lovely to me…especially the spoon!!! xxxx

  3. thatsummerfeeling1 says:

    Definitely the silicone spatula. I don’t know how I lived for over 40 years without it. My giant stainless steel mixing bowl, tablespoon, like yours. Bone handled butter knife from my grandfathers shop. Way before I was born. Soft fruit peeler. Great for peaches, plums etc. Balloon whisk. I think that’s it.

    • millbraemakes says:

      Hey Michelle, those silicon spatulas rock. I have quite the collection of bone handled knives, we use them everyday as regular cutlery, again, thanks to my Mother-In-Law. I so wanted to put my balloon whisk in, but I couldn’t really have a top 50 could I?

  4. naomitree2003 says:

    my hand mouli (grater). such a simple tool, fine and course grating blade and a slicing blade. Cheese, vegies, biscuits, nuts all go through this gadget with just a spin of the handle. I know that a food processor can do it quicker, but if you include washing up and assemblt time – this wins hand down.

    • millbraemakes says:

      Oh Naomi, I’ve often thought about adding a mouli to my collection of kitchen stuff, now you’ve convinced me. It’s just made the top of my list of things to acquire. Thanks.

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