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Get Kitchy With It: A Guide to Stocking a Healthy Kitchen – Part II

by Marissa on June 7, 2011

Yesterday, I left you with a list of my favorite ingredients I always keep on hand in my kitchen. Today, I’m completing the healthy kitchen series with a run-down of my favorite kitchen gadgets. You don’t need a lot of expensive tools to create a healthy meal. I started with a steamer basket, some hand-me-down pots and pans and a George Foreman Grill. The more I cooked, the more I added and I’m still adding new utensils all the time!

GADGETS

Cutting Board: For chopping, dicing and slicing, a cutting board is essential. Find one made of hard wood, like maple, plastic or rubber.
Tongs: Lift and flip meat and vegetables without getting burned. Tongs provide optimum control and won’t puncture food.
Pots and Pans: Good pots and pans are an investment and require a full range of shapes and sizes. Consider a reasonably-priced cookware set. Stainless steel and cast iron are also stick-resistant so you can avoid the toxic Teflon.
Knives: In this case, one good knife is better than none – or even an entire set. Start with an eight-inch chef knife and add a paring knife or one with a serrated edge.
Steamer Basket: Pressed for time? Cook vegetables quickly and keep all their vitamins intact with a steamer basket. Collapsible baskets fit any pot but many cookware sets provide their own sturdier ones which can double as a colander.
Microplane: For flavor or garnish, zest fresh ingredients like citrus, ginger, garlic, nuts and hard cheeses on this razor-sharp, hand-held grater.
Storage Containers: Keep bulk items like grains and legumes fresh and within reach in glass storage containers with airtight lids.
Vegetable Peeler: Aside from its more obvious use for removing tough skins from vegetables, our favorite way to use this handy tool is for slicing carrots, beets and cucumbers into salads.
Rice Cooker: Preparing perfect grains is a no-brainer with a rice cooker. We like the simplicity of an electric model: add rice, water, turn it on and come back when your rice is finished cooking.
Blender: The superhero of the kitchen, blenders can liquefy, puree, chop, emulsify and grind its contents into smoothies, soups, salad dressings, sauces, dips and desserts. We use ours daily and think there is no better tool for healthy kitchen.
Ready to stock your kitchen? Check out the strip of restaurant supply stores on Bowery Street where you can find a range of reasonably-priced kitchen gadgets. Two to try:
·         Paragon Restaurant Supply, 256 Bowery Street
·         Broadway Panhandler, 65 East 8th Street
Want more? New Yorkers have more than 90 restaurant supply stores at their disposal.  Here’s an extensive list.
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