Kitchen Must-Haves.

My husband, bless his heart, has been the master of gift giving as of late.  The man can do no wrong in this department anyway.  He has a sixth sense and manages to buy me something I would have never bought for myself, but soon can’t live without.   Because we’re on such a tight budget right now, the gifts are that much nicer because they involved a bit more sacrifice than usual.

Santa left a 2-Piece Mini Silicone Spatula Set in my stocking.  Williams-Sonoma doesn’t carry them anymore, but Crate and Barrel does.  You can find them here.  I love them so much.  Also in my stocking, six bags of whole spices.  Why, you ask?  Keep reading.

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Under the Christmas tree I found a box that contained my beloved Cuisinart Spice and Nut Grinder.  I use this without fail every single day.  Freshly ground spices just might change your life, or at least inspire you to make the best curries you’ve ever made.  Or try them if you haven’t.  I have been grinding nuts and grains for gluten-free flours.  I’ve been making spice mixes and dry rubs.  I’ve pulsed coarse sugar to make it finer.  Coconut.  Whole spices.  The only drawback is that it does not replace the mini food processor I may or may not have dropped on the floor.  (Ahem.)  It only does dry, not wet.

Whenever I feel bad about the broken mini food prep, I pick up my Bamix Immersion Blender.  Whitney had been on my case about getting an immersion blender for a long time.  I tossed it aside because I have two blenders and three two food processors.  (Remind me to tell you about the almost 30 year old, 20-cup Cuisinart I inherited as a hand-me-down from my grandmother.  You’ll die.  It is in perfect condition.)  Guess what I haven’t used for awhile–two blenders and two food processors.  I bottled my own tomatoes from my garden.  I stick the immersion blender down into the jar and pulse a few times and the tomatoes are pureed like magic.  I add garlic, herbs, a bit of salt and pepper and I have sauce for pasta or pizza.

He got me the fancy one with all the attachments. It is so powerful I feel like it could chop solid marble into a fine powder. Soups are a cinch. Eggs are whipped in nanoseconds. Whipped cream. What else have I done with it? What haven’t I done with it? It doesn’t mop the floor for me. I still have to do that. And it doesn’t wash dishes. But it’s so easy to clean that little else matters. I swoon. Wanna know what my kids call it? Mommy’s Lego Toy.  I think we know why.

What are you using in your kitchen these days that saves you?  What do I need to put on my list for my birthday next month?

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  1. My sweet husband got me All Clad pans this Christmas. And they really are all they are cracked up to be. They just heat so evenly, you don’t know what your missing until you get them. That spice grinder looks awesome…maybe for my birthday

  2. Jealous of your nut/spice grinder. I have been using a mortar and pestle for my whole spices. It’s satisfying and delicious, but it takes a long time.

    What I want more than anything are some really good knives. and the All Clad; i could go for that too.

  3. That is so funny because I just recently over powered my mini food processor so I got a immersion blender to replace it! I absolutely love it. I just used it to puree tomatoes the other day. More fun ideas…guacamole in an instant or quick hummus!

  4. All-Clad 9″ omlette pan. LOVE.
    Every single bit of Le Creuset I own. Also love.
    I also have the mini-spatula/spoonula set from back when W-S sold them, & I’m always using them!
    I wish I had some good metal tongs though. That’s at the top of my list right now.

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