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Top 10 Tuesday: Kitchen Essentials
Perhaps you've heard the news: We're moving to St. Maarten. Since it's only a year tour, the majority of our belongings will be staying in a storage unit and consequently, we're only taking what we can manage to fit into six jumbo suitcases.
As I packed my all my tank tops into our Vita-Mix last night, I started thinking about what tools and gadgets were absolutely essential -- what could I not live without? What is so important it's worth prime storage space in the luggage? What tools did I need so desperately that I was willing to hold back clothes, shoes and other things to fit it?
The answer was not my Vita-Mix. I'm only taking that sucker because it can moonlight as my beloved food processor and make peanut butter (a little FYI: peanut butter is not always easy to come by outside of America. This presents a problem for us, as Scott practically bathes in peanut butter). Basically, the Vita-Mix is getting picked for winning the utility award.
The first "essential" items I grabbed were measuring cups and spoons. Since St. Maarten is owned by the French and Dutch, I assume everything is metric, and, well, I'm not going to go there. :-)
Next, I went for my knives. A good, sharp knife makes all the difference in the kitchen. Packing them proved troubling, and ultimately, Scott made me take them out -- convinced you can't take knives on a plane, even if they are stowed in the belly. Bummer. (I'm actually calling the airline today to confirm this--I really love my knives!).
Other, obvious, tools include mixing bowls, cutting boards, whisks, spatulas, pots and pans -- but these items are already in our furnished condo.
I was scratching my head and saying "ugh! what else?!" for minutes until I thought of my cheesecloths. Although not used terribly often, when I need it.... I need it! I use my cheesecloth to make homemade rice milk (a recipe in my cookbook) -- which we surely won't find on the island.
Next was a metal vegetable steamer basket. Although I prefer my electric Oster steamer (a bargain at just $20!) it was far too bulky.
What tools and gadgets are essential to your kitchen?