Essential kitchen Tools13 Min Read

Our traditional recipes handed down across generations in a family had a unique and wonderful taste due to slow and time consuming processes , our grandmas would spend almost all day in the kitchens and take hours to create culinary delights using the essential kitchen tools of their times . We remember and crave for even now but which cannot be possibly re- created by use of our fast and time saving machines today .Part of the magic was in the expertise of the cook, the other part in the traditional pots and pans in which the food was cooked.

Even today cast iron skillets and tavas,  bronze urlis, as well as pots, kadais and bottles made from clay are available , however with less time available at hand , our new generation wants to have instant results in cooking (like in all else of course)

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Therefore the idea of this Blog post is to provide basic info on  available cooking tools in today’s market , their benefits and uses , market info on where to buy and price range  .

OVENS

The ovens come in huge variety in the market today, and no you do not have to go out to the nearby market in the heat and buy one , its available online ! just click on what you like and voila ! then you have choice of paying on delivery or by card whichever you wish .

  1. The Microwave-

Microwave oven

Everyone  needs an easy way of cooking and time-saving method for any task so that they can divert to the other activities once they are finished with it. Women get bored with their kitchen work and long hours spent cooking  and really enjoy the time saving and easy cooking in a microwave oven

The touch buttons help to set time according to recipes It works this way- molecules present in the food vibrate faster and  build up thermal energy.The time of heating is  so short that the nutrients and vitamin -C are maintained in a microwave without being destroyed.

The microwave , however like all machines has advantages and disadvantages.

Advantages

  • First advantage of microwave is that its  time-saving,convenient and maintains the nutrient and water composition of the food.
  • Microwave oven heats  food without burning, as we can  set the time.
  • Easy to use, as it is automatic.
  • Defrosts any frozen food within no time.
  • Cooks fast so the vitamins are preserved in the food.
  • Ability to cook food with less oil  allows us to prepare a low fat diet.
  • Bake food without any mess.

Disadvantages

  • It cannot be used for deep frying or making  chapatti.
  • It is dangerous to health as the studies show that using microwave could cause cancer as it produces  cancer causing agents.
  • Radiation it emits is dangerous.
  • Microwave retains  the nutrients but  the texture of food, color, and taste will change, compared to when its cooked  on a stove.
  • The water content decreases and food becomes dry and tasteless sometimes.

Price when buying online

You can find microwaves in many different capacilities like – 20 ltrs , 30 ltrs and so on

For a small nuclear family the suggested size maybe small 17 ltrs  which at present starts at 3590 INR! you can check this offer here

and also another option

Click for Amazon link here


2. Oven Toaster Grill /OTG

food-kitchen-microwave-1287150 (1)

Oven Toaster and Grill or OTG  is well known kitchen appliance exclusively to bake, grill and toast.If you are person who loves to bake cakes or grill  or even make that excellent toast for breakfast  , then OTG is the appliance for you.

Here are the functions and uses of OTG-

  1. We can  BAKE using an OTG.
  2. Cakes, Pizzas,  tikkas etc all come out tasty and evenly cooked .
  3. Here we set some temperature and oven  heats up to that temperature , we keep inside it our cake batter or meat and bake it /roast it .
  4. Grill function  tikka or kebab crispier.
Disadvantage of OTG
  1. Uses electricity in order to function and takes time to make stuff like cakes , pizzas etc. That means that you will be paying for the electricity that the toaster uses and this could marginally increase the cost of your electricity bills
Buy an OTG online –

Bajaj – 1200 W , capability to cook , grill , bake , toast , very good price of 2809 INR(16 ltr)

Link to buy – here

Borosil – good looks , 1300 Watts Heating Element,6 Stage heating options priced at 4469 INR for 19 litres

Link to buy – here


COOKERS

Cookers are of different varieties- Pressure Cookers , Rice cookers and lately there is a smart new addition to cookers – The Clip on lid Pressure cooker

  1. Pressure Cooker

hs18 pressure cookers

Source of Image – here 

We all have Pressure cookers at home , we know that certain dishes like rajmah or mutton will take ages to cook if the pressure cooker was not used .

Advantages of cooking in a pressure cooker –
  1. Food items cooked in a pressure cooker get ready faster, using less liquid
  2. Foods that are pressure cooked retain more nutrition, color and flavour.
  3. Faster cooking results in  significant energy savings and lower Electricity Bill.
  4. Keeps the kitchen cooler ,When cooking with regular stovetop pots and pans, the heat rises through the pan and travels upwards and heats up the kitchen but a pressure cooker keeps the heat and steam locked inside so that none of it escapes to heat up your kitchen. Reducing the amount of heat and steam results in a cooler kitchen.
  5. A pressure cooker has a secured lid that prevents any splashes from escaping the cooking vessel. This also does not allow boil overs which require further cleanup. after cooking, there’s only one pot to wash.
Prices of a Pressure cooker in market at present –

A small family would be happy with a 5 ltr capacity cooker so lets see what is available

  1. Prestige  is always trusted brand in Pressure cookers , this one below is available at 2619 INR at present ! Lets see what are the good features of this cooker –

Its a Stainless Steel Pressure Cooker made of high quality stainless steel, makes your kitchen look asthetic , its features include euroclad base with induction bottom for even distribution of heat, and the unique pressure indicator for extra safety, it also has handles with double screws for sturdy grip and durablity

You can buy this – here

Lets see another one –Hawkins is another well known brand for cookers

this one is 2975 INR its special features are-

Its  ceramic-coated hawkins contura pressure cooker has german, high-quality, non-toxic ceramic coating only on the exterior and the base of the body, Its base heats quickly, it is scratch and stain-resistant, easy to clean and stays looking new for years

This is available – here


Gas Stoves and Induction Stoves

A Gas stove  uses  liquefied petroleum gas or other flammable gas as a source of fuel. In old times the stoves or chulhas as they were called relied on solid fuel such as coal or wood. Gas stoves were developed in the 1820s. The  advantage of a Gas Stove is that it is adjustable and can be turned off and on with ease and needs less labour to use  or turn off and on .

gas-stove-1776648_1280

INDUCTION Stove

In Induction Cooking  a cooking vessel  gets heated by magnetic induction,inductive heating directly heats the vessel and  very rapidly  increases the  temperature .In an induction Stove , a coil of copper wire is placed under the cooking pot and an alternating electric current is passed through it this results in the induction of  the magnetic flux by the oscillating magnetic field, this produces Eddy Currents in the pot and heats it .

induction stove

Image source – here

Gas Stove VS Induction stove 

  1. Gas stove works without electricity so its a major advantage where there are power cuts ,however getting a LPG gas connection is a bit of paperwork and providing ID cards , which is a hassle we dont find in Induction stove – just get it and use it !
  2. Any type of cookware can be used on a Gas Stove , while on a Induction stove only specific cookwares made for induction stoves can be used , a cooking vessel must be made of, or contain, a ferromagnetic metal such as cast iron or some stainless steels. However,other metals can be used if placed on a ferromagnetic disk .
  3. Keeps the kitchen cool This is because induction stoves only heat the cookware you’re using and nothing else. Less risk of  burning yourself or setting something on fire!
  4. Induction stove  is much safer than gas stove . An Induction Stove has many user friendly features it can automatically power off the moment the pan leaves the surface. Some of them are even cool to the touch within seconds. some have timers and  child safety systems

So to conclude this comparison , we can say that its best to have both in the house – the gas stove and the induction stove .

Pricing of available products at this time

1 – Prestige – is a well known brand in Gas stoves , this is one of their glass top Gas stoves

Very good to look at and available in 2, 3 ,4 burner options this one is about 5000 INR at present you can check it out here

stove 1

2. This is a much liked Induction stove in market , however there are many options , most will be around 2000 INR you can buy it here

induction 2


POTS AND PANS

  1. Saute Pan- this pan can be used for boiling noodles , rice , making Biryani and curries  , also dry vegetables .

saute pan

This is a non stick saute pan with lid ,non stick pans are good for a quick clean up , the lid keeps the food within and  locks the heat in too , therefor cooking is easier – you can buy it in around 1000 to 2000 INR – here 

2.WOK

Wok is used for Stir-Frying, Steaming, Deep-Frying and Re-heating

wok

A Wok can be bought for INR 1-2000 from here

3.Tawa /skillet

A Tawa or a flat skillet is necessary item  Indian Kitchen. Roti is made daily  across all households in India , Rotis and parathas as well as Dosas are cooked on a tawa .

tawa

You can find it mostly under 1000 INR here

4. Tadka Pan

In India we season our Raitas and curds, Dals and Dhoklas and for that we need a tadka pan . Tadka is a technique of cooking to bring the flavours of spices and aromas of onion and garlic into the food with use of less oil .

tadka pan

Tadka pan is available under 500 INR here

5. Food processor – 

A very important addition to the kitchen always – It has attachments for grinding both wet and dry spices, it has a liquidizer for making smoothies and shakes , It can be used  to make wet masala pastes and pureé ingredients like onions and tomatoes for gravies.You can also knead doughs , whisk perfect whites for cakes and omelettes, cut fries the perfect size … many many tasks which take ages can be done using a food processor in a jiffy !

 

processor

There are many varities in market  with many functions , just chose what suits your needs and your pocket too , a well known one is about 5-6000 INR and is available here

6. Mortar and Pestle set 

This is used  rough/coarse grinding of fresh herbs and whole spices.Very useful for some indian dishes . its available in wood , marble and steel mostly , however i would prefer steel , easier to maintain .

mortar

you can find more options and also get this set online here

7. Chopping Boards 

These are available in various materials like plastic and wood , i believe wooden one is better Plastic cutting boards  are easier to sanitize. But cutting on them also leaves lots of cuts where bacteria can hide. Wood is tougher to sanitize, but you wont find  as many deep scratches in the surface.

A good chopping board can be found under 500 INR

cutting board

This and various other options can be bought here

8. Sharp knives

Basically two diferent  knives  are needed for cutting both meat and vegetables, however if you check in market  there are so many variations  for fruits , vegetable and so on.

One can always buy a set like this

knife

Either that or choose different knives for different items , as per your needs

the knife set can be purchased here

9. Grater 

Though there is a grater attachment in a processor sometimes , but when the power is off or in a hurry , the grater comes in handy , it also comes in various sizes

grater

This can be found for under a 100 INR – here

10. Mixing bowl

These are available in Glass (Borosil) and Plastic , Aluminium and Steel also wooden , they are used for making dough for different kinds of bread, mixing batters  for cakes and other raw mixes .

bowl.jpg

This is a much liked item and useful too while being cost effective , its about 600 INR for a set of 4 , it can be purchased from here

11. Chakla Belan

Thats the name of indian Rolling pin and its accompanying disk used for rolling chapatis , parathas and other indian breads and also pastry , it should be niether too heavy nor too light . Its available in wooden and marble makes

chakla

Its easily available in local markets but if one wants to buy online Mostly its under 1000 INR  , one such item is available here

12. Sieve /Collander

For draining rice and noodles and washing vegetables and lentils and fruits also for making tea .It is usually available in plastic and steel material .

sieve1

This vatiety is good for vegetables washing , rice draining and washing fruits

its available for about 1-200 INR here

The small metal variety will be ideal for tea straining

sieve11

Its available here

13.Spoons for cooking 

Cooking spoons is necessary for every kitchen , mostly steel spoons are used but one can opt for wooden ones or plastic ones which go well with non stick cooking utensils

Here is a set of spoons needed

cooking spoon set

This looks like it will be good enough for a small kitchen , it can be bought here here

 

 

 

 

 

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