Convenience foods and fridge dinners, good home cooking has all but disappeared in parts of the United States, and young people eat this food every day of their lives. Some do not know at all how to prepare fresh food or even how to use basic kitchen equipment.
You may be one of those people. Do you know where to start buying kitchen equipment, especially if money is tight? A fairly small, simple list of items will give you everything you need to get started. And you should soon recoup the money you spent, because cooking not only nutritionally, but also financially is better: ready meals and takeaways are much more expensive than freshly prepared ones.
The essentials you need to set up your kitchen don’t have to be worth the cost of mundane items like spatulas, measuring cups and spoons, a colander, wooden spoons, whisks, and cutting boards – all of which can be purchased cheaply at dollar-priced stores. There are more expensive alternatives, but these cheap items are perfect for a start and can be easily replaced if needed.
Pots and pans are slightly different, buying cheap here is usually a false economy, it is important to buy the best quality you can afford. There are cheap Teflon-coated pans out there that probably cost less than half the price of a quality heavy-duty pans, but chances are they will scratch very easily and eventually need to be replaced regularly. Trust me when I say a good quality pot can last a lifetime and save you money in the long run.
So that you can prepare a wide variety of main dishes, you really don’t need a lot of pots and pans. One 2-liter skillet, one 3-liter skillet with a lid, and a twelve-inch skillet along with a good stockpot should start.
If at all possible for both the frying pan and the pot, it is best to buy cast iron. They conduct heat evenly and are almost impossible to destroy. Before using a cast iron skillet, it is important to make sure it is “seasoned” so that food does not stick to it. To do this is quite simple, just clean the pan thoroughly and grease with oil half a dozen times. If you do this, you don’t have to wash the pan, just pour hot water and a little soap-free scrub into it and it will be ready to use again. It is worth noting, however, that if you are cooking something acidic, such as a dish containing fruit, such as tomatoes, the coating will be removed and the process will need to be repeated before reusing the pan.
For casseroles, the best advice is to buy the best you can afford. Nice heavy duty stainless steel with a copper bottom is a great choice because again the heat is evenly distributed over the bottom of the pan, which means food won’t burn as easily.
So, as you can see, it doesn’t take long to get started. You will likely find that you enjoy cooking and even EAT more freshly prepared food. Over time, you will also expand your collection of culinary clothes and, no doubt, acquire such gizmos and gadgets. There’s really nothing to lose here, so step into the kitchen and get creative!