If you can only carry six culinary tools, what would they be? I'm looking for hand-held tools, not pots, pans, skillets, etc.My thought was to canvas chefs who customarily carry the tools that they can't work without. These are chefs who have a lot of experience walking into poorly-equipped kitchens.
Like a carpenter who brings his own tools to the jobsite, I often carry a wide selection of culinary tools when I work in an unfamiliar kitchen. It's frustrating to walk in a kitchen -- especially one that you've never seen -- and find out that there are no tongs anywhere.
After receiving input, I composed the following list:
- Knives--I never leave home without my knife roll; it includes French, slicer, bread and boning knives plus a steel
- Tongs--I use tongs for everything: pick up food, stir a saute or sweat or baste chicken breasts in a skillet
- Dough cutter--Outside of tongs, this is the best all-around tool; I use it for scraping, cutting dough, picking up chopped vegetables, etc.; it double as a spat in a pinch
- Digital thermometer--A necessity; every chef should own one or more quality thermometers
- Scoops or dishers--I love dishers and keep a bunch in my utensil drawer at home; essential sizes include #8, 12, 16, 24 and 30; they're good for portioning out meatballs or cookies and can be used to measure ingredients in a pinch
- Whisk--I rarely find a decent whisks in kitchens
Over the weekend, I packed a wide selection of tools into the toolbox. While compact, the toolbox has sufficient room in the tub to hold everything that I need. The tote tray holds all the small items.
I figure that I can leave the toolbox in the truck if necessary and recover it later in the week. My knife roll is already packed in my duffel bag. All I'll have to do is stuff the scale, dough cutter, thermometer and one or two other tools in the bag for the trip across the lake.