We have very little counter space, but I use the toaster oven almost every day. It is big enough to cook many items one would ordinarily use the big oven for, without heating up the kitchen. And it makes toast, too! 8-)
Also, we have so little cabinet space, I had to get some Rubbermaid cabinets to store large kitchen items outside on the patio! It's challenging when one really enjoys cooking.
It's definitely a challenge, but it can be done!
I've considered a toaster oven. They are a handy size.
Things I've wanted for a while are a good stand mixer and a food processor, especially since I'm (a) vowing to myself to eat better, and (b) doing more cooking and baking for church pitch-ins. There's also the fact that cutting, chopping, and grating by hand is becoming more cumbersome as my Ataxia progresses on it's slow course, which is just a fact of life now. Improvise, adapt, overcome. *nod*
If you have access to garage sales, you can often find appliances at them.
i have a toaster oven, but i've not been using it much. i have a handheld mixer, but i use an old-fashioned potato masher for mashing potatoes. :) i'd be totally lost without my electric kettle.
Aren't kettles wonderful?!
My mom grew up in the 'burbs, but lived in Manhattan for pretty much her entire adult life.
She *loved* the galley kitchen in the apartment she lived in from 1972 on.
She loved that she didn't have to run all around to get her cooking done. She was never more than two steps from the fridge to the stove to the counter.
I'm amazed at what she was able to do with such minimal counter space, but now, having a larger kitchen, I definitely see her point about efficiency vs larger kitchens.
that's what i have - a galley - in my apartment. everything is in arm's reach.
Really works for you in the pressure cooker? I use mine for beef stew, and chicken noodle soup and that's it. I've tried other thins and it's just seems to consistently over cook, maybe mine's just awful.
I've made terrific chicken paprikash, marsala, and lots of other dishes in it.
Rice cooker, blender, kettle, mixer, toaster, and food processor have permanent counter space, and did even when we had less counter.
I do love having all this extra counter.
Its luxurious by uk standards ;)
Yes, those are VERY different standards!
Then again, I've tasted English cooking... ;-)
Immersion! That's what I meant! Duh.
I don't hate my food processor, but I have the same issues with it as you. I know it's silly, since it can go in the dishwasher.
I'd gladly give up my microwave before my electric kettle. Any day.
I realize you guys live way up in the northland, but if you don't have a Mardi Gras party in that perfectly painted kitchen and dining room, it will be a crime.
Seriously. I'll send you a king cake.
Hee! I never considered having one, but you're right that we should. I'll take a king cake!
I'd put mine in the order: microwave, water kettle, immersion blender (which hides away nicely in a drawer), rice cooker, toaster, stand mixer, and if you count it the French press. The regular blender is gathering dust (immersion ones are good enough for smoothies and purees), the slow cooker gets too hot and lives on a shelf far away, and the happy accurate kitchen scale sees more use for envelopes or yarn than for ingredients.
And yes, the microwave is only for reheats or defrosts. Do people actually cook in theirs?
If forced to choose I'd keep a small microwave (it can cook water too), rice cooker, and immersion blender. The rest can be emulated or lived without.
One of my acquisitions in university was a microwave cookbook. You can actually do quite a bit (and it poaches eggs pretty well, if you get an egg poaching thingy for it).
Microwaves are also valuable when cooking squash and melting chocolate. And cooking frozen vegetables, if that counts.
I am the same way about the food processor. The only time I will use it is if its clearly superior to chopping stuff by hand or to mix and chop at the same time like if I'm making Pico De Gallo and I want some garlic,jalpeno and cilantro mixed. Much easier to jsut put that stuff in the mini prep.
I could easily use it almost daily to chop or shred, and yet I don't. Neither do other people, though That's a design flaw.
Our kitchen is a tiny one [we have about 6 feet of counter space all together] but I definitely love kitchen electrics.
I agree with the love of electric kettles--so wonderful. Since we don't have A/C, I invested in a counter top convection oven for toast, small baked goods and such during the heat of the summer.
We actually cook quite a bit with our microwave. Its been shown to keep more vitamins in veggies than boiling or steaming, so use it for that a lot. Plus, it makes great steamed-in-parchment fish and a nearly no-stir risotto. We also use our slow cooker quite a bit. I particularly love it for overnight oatmeal.
The last thing I really love is my mini Cuisinart food processor. It doesn't have the slicing and grating functions of a large one, but it chops things up wonderfully and its really small [and it was very inexpensive!]
My veggies usually get broiled or sautéd. Not big on steaming or microwave--I dislike the texture most of the time. . I do use my microwave to make cream of wheat, but really not much else!
You don't slow cook? But slow-cooked chili is a gift from the gods, and eminently freezable...
This is going to be one of those "Ferrett won't eat it" things, isn't it?
Also: know that I love these domestic posts a lot. However, dear god, replace your dishwasher. Or paint it, even. Or cut it out of every photo. Just make it stop CLASHING so... ;)
I will have to photoshop it, LOL. it isn't as glaring in day to day living, I promise
No, the slow cooking isn't a Ferrett thing. It's my temperament. Starting dinner in the morning is just something to which I've never taken.
So is it common for American households not to have a kettle then? I'm from Australia and not having a kettle in your kitchen is unheard of!
I'd never even heard of them until we went to England in 2006, but they are becoming a bit more common now. Still, I doubt that one US household in 10 has them.
It never occured to me that American's don't have an electric kettle by default. Revelations like this are one of the main reasons I like to read American blogs.
It reminds me of a few years ago, we were struggling with money so we saved cash by going without a TV for a few months. My mum worked in a school at the time, and when one of the 6-7 year olds discovered she had no TV, his response was 'But.... but.... but... where do you live then?'.
I am worried for the next generation if they can't even envisage a house without a TV.
Yup, kettles are a rarity here in the US. To the bafflement of the rest of the English-speaking world, apparently.
And I agree with you about the future and kids.
55 comments! I wish I could go thru all of them to be sure I"m not duplicating, but had to throw this in the mix. If I AM duplicating, I apologize.
It seems to me my mother has the stand mixer that also has a food processor attachment, as well as a blender attachment. Oster, maybe? If it's true, it would certainly save a bit to buy one that does all three. And maybe has a juicer as well.
Probably Oster. They are a great compromise for a small space, though a little underpowered--which comes from compromise. It's like the Kitchenaid attachments: they work on the most heavy-duty of the machines, and burn out the others. But for most people's use the multi-tool is probably great!
Gods, do I want a stand mixer. One of the big Kitchen Aid ones, don't even care what color. *Drool*
I use my rice cooker at least twice a week, but unfortunately while my kitchen is a large room, there's quite literally no counter space. There is the sink, with the huge drainboard attached to it, then the tiny stove on the other side. The only sort-of counter space I have is the "island" that I have shoved up under the window that holds my microwave and table fountain (it's what I have instead of a humidifier in the winter). There's about three inches of space in front of the microwave/fountain for me to prepare stuff. Somehow I manage, but it's the only thing I really hate about my current apartment (everything else about it is fantastic, though, especially the "no bed bugs" part).
You should be able to find some kind of cheap table at a garage sale. Not ideal, but it would give you something...
I got my electric kettle after you came back from Europe and raved about it. I love it. All of my stove top kettles rusted. I was wondering if you could cook quinoa in the rice cooker. I've been reluctant to experiment with mine. I've wanted a stand mixer but keep reading that the Kitchen Aide is not very well made anymore. Your new kitchen is gorgeous.
I think that the Kitchen Aid complaints come from the fact that a lot of people are trying to use the attachments and burning them out, because the entry level Kitchen Aids don't have the omph for that even though the attachments fit. Mine is working great.
I like my quinoa very soft and almost barley-like, so the rice cooker is good for that. If you want it toothier, it's too long a cooking time.
What's your rice cooker? I had a Salton one and it didn't work so well.
Um, the one from my sister...? Hold on...
Aroma is the only name on it. I'm sure that's NO help. It's the absolute simplest kind. One switch. You plug it in and it's on warm, you flip the switch and it runs it's cooking cycle then goes back to warm. I like sticky rice, and it does it perfectly every time.
we use it to get a jumpstart on cooking pasta or potatoes or anything else that requires boiling water.
That's BRILLIANT! I must do this thing!
As for the food processor, I have a smaller food processor for the little chopping, which cleans just fine in the dishwasher. And an herb chopper which is on the list for things I'm glad I registered for. But as a Cajun, I simply can't live without my giant food processor. There are too many Cajun dishes which demand a huge number of finely chopped onions, and my hands simply won't hold a knife for that long anymore.
It seems that you use your pressure cooker where I use my slow cooker. Maybe when ours dies, I'll look into a pressure cooker. Does it seem to make all the same sorts of things? Roasts, stews, etc.?
I'm trying to use the food processor more. Used it twice last week.
Pressure cooker is very much a fast version of slow cooking. I do love it.
Our kitchen is, I think, a little larger than yours; we dispensed with the toaster yonks ago because we... don't eat toast. On the other hand our breadmaker sees a lot of use (I haven't the patience for doing it properly I'm afraid). I'd struggle without the microwave I think; although the coffee grinder and filter machine are clearly luxuries. I don't think my mixer sees use more than once a year.
And you are SO RIGHT about kettles. Could not live without. Can not process American no-kettle-having habit :-p
if you don't eat toast, then there is definitely no cause for having a toaster! I'm not even sure where my coffee grinder is at this point. I make coffee that infrequently. Kettles are the bomb.