This Thanksgiving I’m not cooking. And I’m thankful. In past years I’ve gone to town with various menus. This year both kids will be elsewhere, and my husband and I, as we did in 2014, are going out to eat. Let us hope the food is better this time.
As we enjoy the lacuna, for one must grace quiet moments with their own Big Words, I’ve been wondering, what might be the ideal set of Thanksgiving kitchen tools? If one were to start from scratch? Let’s define ideal as a) suited to function b) no more than needed but as good-looking as possible, and, c) as often as possible on sale right now from familiar retailers.
Here’st what I came up with.
- Roasting pans that work on the stove top This inexpensive old school version just might do the trick. I’d have to see if the turkey sits high enough to allow for actual roasting. (I like to make pan gravy with a roux and giblet broth, and I don’t fuss too much about separating out the fat etc. That’s how Mom always did it. Worcestershire sauce the secret ingredient.) Or this pan, on deep sale at Macy’s, is a step up.
- Baking pans with a lip . Brussels sprouts are prone to rolling onto the oven floor. (Oh, by the way, have you discovered parchment paper? To line the pan? So much better than aluminum foil.)
- Ceramic pie pans. These are so pretty, in multiple colors with a fluted edge, I bought a similar pair once in a rush and appreciate every instance when they escape the Baking Cupboard. O sad bakeware in a non-baking kitchen!
- While our Thanksgiving is highly oven-intensive, I do need two largish stove-top pots. One for boiling potatoes and one for boiling pearl onions before they are baked in cream sauce. These aren’t All-Clad tasks. You want a pot big enough, sturdy, but not so heavy you have to call in reinforcements to lift it. I have never found anything better than good old Revere Ware. The company still exists, but they no longer make their copper-bottomed beauties. eBay remembers. I really want this one, it’s bigger than the one I have. But I use mine, oh, every other day?
- Which reminds me, I need a very small All-Clad saucepan (on sale at Sur la Table) for roux (similar but fancier and also on sale) (which reminds me I use a small Le Creuset baking dish for baking onions bathed in said roux. Nobody ever eats very many creamed onions. The old cast iron enamelware is no longer available in an au gratin. Once again, eBay to the rescue. I’ve owned mine, that mottle thing at top, for 40 years.)
- Of course everything needs cutting. Cooking would be so easy if food just cut itself. I think I could make do with just a chef’s knife, paring knife, a carving knife and fork, and a knife sharpener. Of course, if I had TWO chef’s knives, clan teamwork would be so much more efficient. I call dibs on this one. But Sur La Table has a lot of good knives on sale.
- I have to have a potato masher. Potatoes resist their fate. Sur La Table designed their own, with a nylon head. Target offers the OXO Smooth Grips.
- I cherish my Earlywood sauté tool. For poking at hot things. I got one in 2014. I was subsequently given one of their ladles by a friend, which I also love. Perfect paired with Le Creuset – that enamel doesn’t like metal spoons. Were I buying now, I’d get the Trifecta. And probably a whole bundle of spoons.
- I don’t need a rolling pin, since I buy frozen pie crusts, but garlic mashed potatoes in large volume demand a garlic smasher.
- Finally, I’ve loved this set of glass bowls with lids, to be used both for mixing and for storage once your family pushes their chairs back from the table and confesses – they cannot, simply cannot, eat another bite. And when, the next morning, to put in the microwave when everyone wakes up hungry.
What do you think? Yay? Nay? How would your list differ?
Links may generate commissions. I’ve tried to pick items that can be delivered before Thanksgiving. For free shipping at Earlywood Designs use this code: This1onUs. Sur la Table has free shipping, a 65% cookware sale, and guaranteed delivery for Thanksgiving for 2 more days. Target has free shipping and returns, and in-store pickup for a lot of stuff.