Corn shucker #2
Photo by Donna

A few weeks ago I ran a post on baked buttered corn, a popular dish that requires three-quarters of the corn to be more or less juiced. I use the above corn cutter, costs about ten bucks.  It only does one thing, and that one thing, I can do with a knife or a knife and a blender, I resist letting any unitasker into my kitchen, and yet, I love this corn cutter. It's really easy to use and the result is perfect for what I want in my baked corn.  I'd buy another if someone borrowed this one and never gave it back.  But it made me curious.

A while back I went on a brief I-use-my-egg-separators-to-bake-pies rant, about useless kitchen gadgets.

What are some of your UNUSUAL favorite tools or gadgets.  Not the obvious tools like a good knife or a spoon, but the more uncommon of your cherished tools, unitaskers or not.  And why?  For instance, I know Cory cherishes his mini offset spatual, Michael Symon never wants to be without his plastic bench scraper, Keller wants a very specific pepper grinder (one with a fine grind).  Would love to know specific brands and where to find if it's unusual or difficult to find.

And especially would like to know store-bought gadgets like the above corn cutter that are actually useful.

If you don't have one, I would imagine that's a good sign!

Update 10/30: Thanks everyone for the awesome comments and ideas.  For some reason, Typepad took away the box where you can leave a comment.  I'm trying to figure this out. Comment should be open.  Sorry for the annoyance!

Update, mere moments later: The perp has returned the comment box! Comments welcome!


133 Wonderful responses to “Question to Chefs and Cooks:
Favorite Uncommon Tools”

  • Alice

    I fell in love with my tomato corer this summer after growing my first tomatoes in my very own garden. I had gone to my fiance’s mother’s china cabinet and picked out a beautiful bowl in which to keep the freshly harvested and washed, imperfect, but amazingly tasty Heirloom tomatoes. The corer came out of the drawer and lived beside the bowl; always at the ready to plunge into a tomato for a quick snack. I also use it to make “strawberries a la Monica”- a title I jokingly use to describe my friend’s concoction where she removes the hull of the strawberry, fills the center with Bailey’s and seals them with chocolate. I can’t explain why I think the tomato corer is such a nifty gadget, but I do!

  • Schlake

    I have a very old wooden handled knife with a carbon steel blade. The blade is black from years of neglect. I’m not sure what kind of knife it is, the blade doesn’t easily fit into any common category of knife blades. It’s mostly long and straight. I’d call it a bread knife, but it isn’t serrated.

    As a child, back in the 70s, my parents used it to cut watermelon. That what I still use it for today. Sometimes I use it to cut kitchen twine, but really, it’s the watermelon knife.

  • mary lynn

    My very most favorite unitasker is a bean slicer and stringer made by Krisk. A friend gave it to me about 30 years ago and you can still find them at cooking stores. Great for French style green beans.

  • Badger

    I have a specific peeler that I love — the Chef’n Palm Peeler. I have a lot of trouble with my hands and when cooking, I want to save any grip I still have for knife work. I had a terrible time peeling potatoes, carrots, cukes, etc. until I found this thing. It slips over your finger like a ring and rests in the palm of your hand. You basically just wave your hand over the veggie you want to peel and it’s done! Couldn’t live without it. I think I bought mine at Sur La Table but I’ve seen them all over the place, so shouldn’t be hard to find.

  • The Italian Dish

    I have an olive spoon that I use to remove seeds and pulp from tomatoes that I want to stuff. Because it’s so narrow and long, it’s the only thing that works amazingly well to get down into each section of the tomato. And I love to stuff tomatoes and roast them. I would be lost without this now!

  • MIchael

    Kyocera makes a wonderfully sharp ceramic blade mandoline. While only about 5 inches wide and non adjustable it has some limitations. On the otherside it never gets dull, and is sharp on both sides so it cuts on the up and down swing. I used one in a restaurant kitchen for over a year and it never got dull, and every slice was exactly the same.

    Cherry pitter! I’ve never seen one in a store, but it’s priceless come cherry season. Works on olives and small stonefruit as well.

    Spatzle maker. I don’t care if you only make spatzle once a year, this gadget is worth it. This simple device makes the task of making those little dumplings a realativly clean, easy, and quick one, especially if your making a ten cup batch at a restaurant. Once again something i’ve not seen in stores, but on e-bay at very reasonable prices.

  • carri

    For the whole 16 years of bakery life I have had one pan I could not live without and is never far from my grasp, Meant to be a small ‘cookie sheet’, it is a 9×13 rectangle of thin aluminum that would bake horrible cookies, but can slide a cheesecake of it’s bottom with the greatest of ease…pity the new dishwasher that misplaces ‘mr. slidey pan’!

  • Michel

    I make my own bread, and used to have a plastic scraper for getting the dough out of the bowl. I’ve lost it in a move, so now use a promotional American Card to do the same thing.
    Works like a charm, and I know if I ever lose it that I just need to wait a week or so and I’ll get another one in a pile of junk mail.

  • Dan

    Does a $5, 18oz (I think that’s the weight) rubber mallet from Home Depot count?

    I like it for making schnitzels and sundry flattened cutlets or any other pounded food objects.

    Other than that, I’d have to say I’d die without my WMF flat whisks. Especially, since I’m in Indy now. These people never even heard of a flat whisk. My girlfriend grew up in a baking-heavy, Baptist household, and SHE never heard of a flat whisk until I meandered into her life. I once asked if they had any in the Beyond section of Bed and Bath, and the little helper person looked at me as though I’d just asked for crate of Sudafed and an instruction book on cooking meth.

  • Adrienne

    Dough Whisk! In addition to being really pretty, it is SO good at mixing together no-knead style, high moisture doughs without getting sticky goo all over your hands (and counters and cupboards and hair), and the dough doesn’t clump up in the middle like a traditional whisk would or in the belly of the spoon – it just MIXES. Wonderful.

    Mine is from King Arthur:

  • Brent

    Kuhn Rikon makes a jar opener that works, and that has save my hands and sanity on more than one occasion.

  • Carrie Oliver

    I thought my husband’s apple corer was a silly gadget until I noticed it inspired my starch & salt loving daughter to eat apples.

  • Ninette

    Great post. I can’t live without my Chinese spider, once hard to find but I think they sell fancy stainless steel ones at William Sonoma. I also have a tool that has a ladle handle but a fine mesh strainer on the other end, which is incredibly helpful in skimming soups and all other things. Finally, I have this mini-spatula made of silicone wiht a metal handle. I use it to clean out batter out of bowls as well as for spatula-stuff and other things. I don’t know why, but the mini-spatula is one of my favorite kitchen tools.

  • jscirish27

    Two: My cake tester. Perfect for determining the temps of meat and fish. My immersion blender. Not sure if these are gadgety enough but I use them almost daily.

  • Vicious

    my old school cast iron lemon juicer. it gets every drop out of the lemons by turning them inside out and without seeds. yes i could use a fork or knife but this makes very quick work and assures i dont have to pick out seeds or get the juice all over my hands in the attempt.

  • Darcie

    I have a tool that I think is supposed to be a melon ball tool, but it is a ring, not a scoop. It is horrible for its intended purpose but it works great to remove seeds from cucumber halves, cantaloupes, pears etc. I’ve almost thrown it out a few times, but it works so well for that application that I just can’t get rid of it.

  • Churchyard

    My (absurdly expensive) Champion juicer. I’ll second Carolyn on the shrimp deveiner, too.

  • Richard

    My tea strainer. It’s perfect for skimming stock, and it’s so fine that is does a pretty decent job of skimming fat as well. It also works really well to strain small quantities of sauces and liquids.

  • Localbite

    My favorite multi-tasker is a wooden spatula (actually it might be bamboo) i use instead of almost any other wooden spoons,metal and rubber spats. I think it came in a sushi set I was given as a gift.

  • Pete

    I have an old lardoire (larding knife) and larding needle that I use to lace lean joints with beautiful strips of pork fat.

  • David

    a microplane zester. fast, reliable, easy on the hands, very clean zester.

  • Sean

    I second the cherry pitter! Ever tried to pit any more than three cherries or olives without it? If so, that’s when you decide to make something else.

    Also, the pastry cutter/blender for incorporating cold fat into doughs. No better tool for the job. No other job for the tool.

  • Jay Fanelli

    I’ve almost completely abandoned using full-sized whisks for most whisking. It’s just too much whisk for one- and two- person-sized dishes. Instead, I use the whisk attachment from a hand mixer. It’s the perfect size for whisking in a small bowl, pot, or pan.

  • Denise dS

    The $5 Brix Jar Key ( pops a vacuum seal on almost any shaped lid. It’s been six years and I still marvel at the day it wandered into my life. (At the same time, I had to look in my utensil drawer to see if it had a name…who knew it had a whole Danish engineering group behind it?) And though it doesn’t qualify as a one-hit-wonder, I use my Chinese bamboo-handled strainer…probably also $5…for all manner of non-sanctioned cooking-related activities.

  • Larry D'Anna

    My thermapen. It’s amazing how much more useful it is than all the other the thick, slow probe thermometers on the market.

  • Eric

    I’ll second the lemon juicer. I shudder at the thought of trying to make lemon tarts and squeezing a dozen lemons by hand.

    My favorite tool that I don’t have yet is a perfect quenelle spoon. If anyone knows where to get one in Chicago, please let me know!

  • Scotty Harris

    Two pairs of hemostats one curved, one straight. No, not as a roachclip, but for pulling out pinbones or grabbing out something that shouldn’t be in whatever I am making. An adjustable utility knife for scoring, etc.

    But my absolute favorite is a 50 year old (at least)Presto egg slicer I inherited from my Grandmother. It gets used more for mushrooms and strawberrys than eggs. Yes, they still make them, but not like this.

  • The Modern Apron

    I have an insert for an apple slicer that is a grid (intended for cutting potatoes into french fries), but I use it to slice sticks of cold butter into batons, which I then flip over and cut into cubes. It’s not 100% perfect, but works pretty well.

    I also could not live without my food mill. It seems like an old-fashioned tool in these days of blenders and food processors (which I also have) but for separating the woody or pulpy bits from the rest of a soup or sauce, it can’t be beat!

  • Wendy

    I like the microplane a lot. Found amazing uses apart from grating cheese, garlic, chocolate. I grate lemongrass stems and nutmeg.
    Another new favorite toy is our wine areator. It actually improves the wine!

  • NYCook

    Definitley my Corn/bench scrapper only available at JB Prince in NYC or my Peugot pepper mill. At the restaurant we have this great very old school hand cranked pepper mill, kind of like a hand cranked meat grinder for pepper, that allows for a high volume of mignonette pepper. FYI Thomas Keller engaged… Who would have thought.

    Great video from GrubStreet on butchering at the very good LES restaurant back forty.

  • Susan @ SGCC

    I have a special little tomato knife by PureKomachi that I couldn’t live without. It cost me about $10 and it slices tomatoes absolutely perfectly! No one else in the house is allowed to touch it. By the way, did I mention that it is also the prettiest shade of red? I love that knife!

    I love my cherry pitter too. It does the job without mangling the fruit and it’s kind of fun to use. My 6 year-old nephews love “helping out” with it.

  • lux

    I have a mini mandoline I bought at a now-closed Japanese odd-lots store. It’s tiny but I love it for slicing garlic.

    Also ++ for the hand-held citrus juicer. I tried for a while to just use my hands, but juicing is definitely more efficient and less messy when using a juicer.

  • jered

    I may need to find one of those. I love maque choux but slicing so each kernel is cut into multiple pieces is a pain.

  • hungrygrrl

    oyster knife. It’s a bit shorter and fatter than a normal knife, and isn’t sharp.

    Before I had one I flailed horribly at trying to open oysters…with it it’s a snap!

  • Margaret

    I also love my microplane to zest citrus, grate nutmeg, ginger and garlic. I also love my strainer, though I don’t make it on a regular basis, but I love that I could use my strainer to make spaetzle.

  • katie

    I’ll echo others on the cherry pitter. I’m loathe to keep single use tools, but that is one that will always have a place in my drawers!

  • Matt

    I have a silicon pot holder that I love. Not only is it WAY more heat resistant than my kitchen towels (which I also love) but it doubles (triples?) as a jar opener and a non-skid-pad for a cutting board. Before I had it, I would ALWAYS burn my hand when I pan roasted something because I would grab the handle. With this draped over the hot handle, I never make that mistake!

  • Tana

    I have a potato masher that won a design competition: it’s called a Smood. It’s a coiled masher that basically “churns” the potatoes, and it works more quickly than any masher, ever. And it’s FUN. (I could sell them door to door, I swear.)

    Also, being that I am a turkey roasting fiend, the William Bounds Sili Gourmet Silicone Baster and Injector Set is one of my best friends.

    Ditto everyone above who mentioned their Microplane graters. Life-changing.

  • Allison

    @Mary Lynn — how do you use that French bean slicer? Before cooking or after? If before, how are you cooking the green beans? If you use it after cooking, aren’t the beans cold by the time you’re done?

  • Chris

    An apple corer/slicer/peeler. It takes up too much space for its size and I only use it when making anything with a large number of apples (e.g. apple pie), but it’s totally worth having it to save me an annoying 10 minutes of peeling apples. Coincidentally, this is the only time of year I ever use it.

  • Raeanne

    I use an old glass insulator (from a power pole) to pound chicken breasts.

  • Micah

    After spending somewhere in the range of $70-90 for an Oxo Good Grips mandoline that performed terribly, I picked up a $15 V-slicer that beats the Oxo at everything. It can slice any vegetable I toss at it, whether it is firm potatoes or tender tomatoes. The cheap V-slicer only has two thickness settings, but that limitation has never caused me any trouble in the kitchen.

  • EdTheREd

    I’d like to echo the love for cherry pitters. Growing up, we had two cherry trees in the yard, so my sisters and I were often tasked with pitting cherries for pies (talk about a chore we didn’t mind doing).

    I’d almost forgotten about it, but in the summer of 2008, I decided to make and can a large batch of preserved cherries…so I called my dad up, he dug the pitter out of the back of a drawer, and I was in business. Worked like a charm, and I couldn’t imagine trying to pit four quarts of cherries without it.

    I don’t recall the brand (and I’m at the office now), but I believe it was from a German manufacturer.

  • Nicholas

    I’m absolutely in love with my antique hand-crank coffee grinder. It crushes, rather than slices, coffee beans and produces a remarkably uniform grind. I can adjust the grind fineness by turning a knob. And it’s much, much quieter than any electric grinder I’ve ever used. Plus, the aroma that fills the room when you grind it by hand is not-to-be-missed.

  • 19thandfolsom

    I have what Crate & Barrel calls a “cookie spatula.” It’s a thin, silicone spatula that seems to fall in the “turner” category of spatulas (at least according to Amazon), and I use it for almost everything: frying eggs, flipping eggs, flipping anything that sticks to the pan, making pasta sauces, and occasionally, transferring cookies from a baking sheet to the cooling rack. It’s thin, which is essential, and has a wide base, which gives stability to whatever it’s flipping or lifting. I’d be hard put to choose between that and a wooden spoon for most essential cooking tool (after pots, knives, etc.).

  • three rivers food

    Pizza pans. Theya re good for everything you do in the kitchen- organizing mise en place – cooking- warming- resting-also, silpat.

  • PaulR

    My Hamilton Beach 932 citrus juicer. It was insanely expensive, it’s bulky, and it’s worth every penny and cubic inch. It’s simple, rugged, and simple enough to clean that I’ll pull it out even to juice a single lemon.

    My OXO zester.

    Several people have mentioned cherry pitters; can anyone recommend a specific brand/model?

  • cybercita

    i have a melon baller which was purchased for the express and only purpose of coring apples. i know i could do that with a knife, but it makes the apples look so much neater.

    i haul out my cherry pitter onc or twice a summer, but i couldn’t live without it when i need it.

    i LOVE my magicake strips! i got them at sur la table. you wet them and wrap them around the outsides of cake pans, and they keep the tops from doming. i’ve never had to cut off the top of a cake or had a layer cake be off balance since i bought them. you don’t have to buy these, though. you can make them yourself by wrapping wet paper towels in foil.

    i have a teeny tiny whisk that i use for whisking vinaigrette. it’s perfect for that task.

  • MessyONE

    I occasionally have some problems with my hands – I was diagnosed with arthritis in my 20s, and although it’s usually no big deal, there are times when it is. What it means is that I’m always on the lookout for things that will make my life easier.

    The jar popper is terrific, we’d be lost without our Microplane graters, and the cherry pitter is the best. We pigged out on cherry pies this summer.

    I still maintain that the best seemingly silly one use item is the Oxo Mango Pitter. It looks a bit like their apple corer – a plastic ring with handles that you push down over the fruit.

    The beauty of the mango pitter is that the blades in the center are flexible. When you push down on it, the blades flex to skim over the pit and take the maximum amount of flesh off it.

    We got ours at Target for about twelve bucks. Worth every penny, even if it is awkward to store.

  • Aubrey

    I’ll second the apple peeler/corer/slicer – and mine is an older one that I can only clamp onto one place on my counter, which increases it’s contrariness. I wouldn’t make a pie, or turnovers, or a tatin without it, though. And I’ll also eighteenth the microplane zester, but it’s not really a uni-tasker. That zester improved my cooking, and I was already pretty good! LOL

  • Russ H

    I find a Jif peanut butter jar lid makes perfect 4oz burgers. I portion out my meat and just form it into the lid. it should come right up to the edge. I do prefer to form patties by hand, but when I’m prepping a lot of burgers (25 or more) for a bbq or such, the lid sure helps. Also being plastic,it cleans up nicely. I’ve seen forms that run from $10 and up. My lid was only $4 and came with a jar full of peanut butter!

  • Lyn Reid

    I have my great-grandma’s molcajete (Mexican mortar & pestle) that I use for grinding herbs and spices and to make salsa & guacamole. I also have a molinillo (Mexican whisk) that I use when making Mexican hot chocolate. The modern gadget I cannot do without is my Braun Multiquick Hand Blender. I use it every day.

  • Sylvie, Rappahannock Cook & Kitchen Gardener

    I don’t even remember how I acquire mine. I know they were inexpensive. And they have moved way behind just crab & lobster fork. 7 inches long, a very narrow scoop at one end, a two-prong tiny fork at the other: great to extract stuff from hard to get narrow places, and so they are used mostly now to extract marrow out of bones. Also triple duty as oyster fork.

    The one there are not exactly the same but very similar to the ones I have

  • J Bean

    While I too love my cherry pitter, lemon reamer, and Thermapen, I think my favorite implement is my wire whisk with silicone coated wires. It mixes better and scrapes the sides of the bowl clean as it works.

    I use my immersion blender with its whisk attachment to whip egg whites.

  • Pat Zubres

    I echo Chris on the apple/peeler/corer. When reading the post I thought I’d written it myself. Exact wording to what I planned on posting today.

  • Tim pearce

    HI Michael
    a tete de moine cutter, a circular cheese cutter for this swiss cheese.

  • CEO House

    I’m with S. Harris– hemostats are v. useful– especially for pulling out your fowl’s quill remnants. (ew.)

    Other favorite has to be from the brilliant engineers at Old El Paso: the red plastic duo taco holder! This small little marvel frees up your hands and eliminates Topping Drop Out. Check your Mexican aisle for this priceless freebie….

  • mary lynn

    @Allison, I slice the green beans raw then blanch them. Then I usually just saute with butter, s/p and whatever herbs or spices I feel like at the time. mary lynn

  • Pam

    Oyster knife because who, in their right mind, doesn’t like oysters.
    And my fish spatula, which gets used for a billion other things.

  • Cocina Eclectica

    The challenge was for the most unusual and favorite gadget. I would say my “comal” and my “chitarra”. The comal has so many uses and the chitarra is just plain fun.
    The most absurd gadgets would be an avocado slicer and an egg separator. Although I would consider and egg slicer good.

  • Peter Zimmer

    I’ve got an electric pepper mill that stays in the kitchen right next to the stove. Its greatest virtue is that it lets me grind pepper with one hand, leaving the other hand free to stir, shake or flip whatever I want. A tremendous time saver for under $8.

  • Al W

    truffle slicer, fantastic for garlic, ginger and I have to imagine, truffles. Do people really use shrimp peeler/deveiners?

  • Lauren

    Cherry pitter. Any other pit removal method results in a kitchen-turned-crime-scene effect that takes forever to clean up.

  • Grady Griffin

    cast iron cornbread stick maker in the shape of corn cobs; makes the world’s best cornbread

  • collin donnelly

    It sounds wierd but i always carry a small “fenix” brand flashlight, (the power in the restaurant used to go out constantly!) and a pocket knife for breaking down boxes. not stuff you need every day, but if you need it and don’t have it…you’re screwed! also i found a tiny, maybe 8oz., sized mortar and pestle that i only use for grinding toasted saffron threads. you don’t lose it all to a large mortar or contaminate it’s flavor with whatever you ground last in a coffee grinder!

  • Kevin Shinn

    I get grumpy if I can’t find the .99 cent white plastic bowl scraper when cleaning out my 60qt mixing bowl. Hard to find anything else with the right curve that will do the same job.

  • Jess

    Cooking chop-sticks for turning and mixing things while I cook. Easier than spatchulas and spoons. Two other favs are a all-variety knife that has a pointed edge, the other thing is a spätzle-maker.

  • mike lavigne

    I use a copper cooling unit from a homebrew supply store to cool down large vats of stock quickly.

  • Kate in the NW

    cherry pitter, a selection of Microplane graters, and my “Mouli grater” for hard cheeses.

  • Rhonda

    I don’t think I have anything too unusual. I consider my bench scraper, my electric meat grinder, oyster knife, ricer and food mill, tools that are required to do certain jobs well and they are multitaskers.

    I do however plan on getting a gnocchi board. Not because it does a better job than a fork but because it will make the task more enjoyable.

    My mother is the gadget freak. She has an electric, yes electric, cherry pitter. Why, I do not know but she also has the space to store things like that.

  • pat anderson

    I echo Scotty Harris’ choice of an old-fashioned egg slicer for its ability to make short work of strawberries and mushrooms. And, like Nicholas, I wouldn’t trade my hand-cranked coffee grinder for anything. I can adjust it to different grinds, and enjoy the slow meditation of counting to the right number of grinds to make my morning double espresso. (I can still make a fresh cup of coffee in a power outage, with my stove-top espresso maker: I just have to put it on the barbecue.)

  • Roberto N.

    I don’t think baby offsets or even surgical tongs count anymore as “weird” items since they are becoming popular in kitchens (maybe not so much for home cooks). I need to go peek in my house drawers and I’m sure I’ll find something that qualifies…

  • Rhonda

    Ok, after 5 minutes, I just found a completely weird gadget in my kitchen.

    I “MacGyvered” a large metal whisk by taking the rounded end off of it with metal cutters so that I could use it to dip into caramel and stream thin layers of caramel around Croqembouche. This is not only a one hit wonder but if not stored properly in the kitchen could be dangerous.

    I am obviously not a trained pastry chef but I must say, this worked.

  • Herbert Gercke

    i have a gadget that only has one function; and that is to pop the top from raw eggs. it works great and I know of nothing that can substitute.

  • ArC

    One year, I got a real handheld cherry pitter and things got slightly faster than just halving cherries and manually pulling out each pit.

    Some years after that, I got a tabletop model (by Gefu – ) and it goes through the cherries super-fast. I’d say it has a 98-99% successful pitting rate, so you do have to watch out for the few missed pits. It seems to have more trouble with absurdly fat, oversized cherries. Still, I absolutely love it when cherries are in season.

  • luis

    I love my kitchen gadgets, Most of them await my retirement or my week ends and long week ends.
    Specially my Kitchen Aid attachment collection.
    The meat grinder, pasta maker and sausage stuffing attachement.
    For everyday use I will go to the Cuisinart’s (got two) big and small.
    For everything reasonably dry I cook I use the FoodSaver. If it’s saucy or wet then I just bag it and freeze it.
    Then there is the Foodsaver ten minute marinator thing…

    I don’t think life in my kitchen would be bearable without my Crockpots… yes small and large sizes.

    Then there are the pans…woks…dutch ovens… a miriad of baking trays and oh yes!! my stone and pizza pans.

    But Guaranteed the most used attachement next to my knives is the small red plastic cutting board.
    Guaranteed I use it several times each day. The big bamboo cutting board is for when I cook large only.
    The small cutting board is used and cleaned and disinfected several times a day, sometimes night.

  • Greg Daly

    mike lavigne:
    I can’t believe I haven’t thought of that. I make tons of stock and lots of beer. I have an immersion chiller I could use for the stock. Duh.

  • Metaxa

    My favourite tool in the kitchen is my friend Joe.

    He’s only good for opening another beer or pouring another glass of wine but he does that very well.

    Plus he watches hockey with me, not many kitchen gadgets can do that!

  • vitamins

    I have read the whole article based on the favorite uncommon tools.From the given information,I can’t believe I haven’t thought of that. I make tons of stock and lots of beer. My favorite tool in the kitchen is my wife.

  • kcg

    My butchering gear has really changed my life. I have a curved boning and a 10″ breaking knife (Forschner-Victorinox). Not fancy knives – plastic handle, but completely functional. My cleaver is by Dexter-Russell #S5289 – an incredible tool. The weight of it just makes everything easy and safe. These tools were suggested by the “A pig in a day” video. While I’m not as yet butchering the whole animal, they just make day to day operations easy: boning out a leg of lamb, cutting the morning bacon from the side, etc. See:

  • Natalie Sztern

    Scotty Harris: in a hundred years i would not have thought to use my ages old egg slicer for strawberries or mushrooms…Thanks another great idea…

  • Kim

    My favorite kitchen tool is a metal skewer. I’ve never used it for kabobs, but it is great to poke holes in spaghetti squash. I don’t have the hand strength to cut squash in half while raw, so I poke holes in it with the skewer and microwave it for 10-20 minutes until done. I then cut it open and remove the seeds–it works perfectly every time!

  • Rob Pattison

    Cherry/olive pitter definitely. Can’t make strawberry-stuffed black olives without it.

  • ntsc

    I would go with the same sausage stuffer as pksmash, from the same place. CIA uses the same one.