Apart from the joys of cooking, one of the things that gets me going is the amazing range of kitchen gadgets, equipment, pots and pans, cooking utensils that one finds in the stores these days, be it a departmental store or a specialised kitchen shop. One of my all time favourite stores has to be Lakeland Limited. To me the experience is like being Alice in Wonderland – a treasure trove of some of the most innovative home and kitchenware you can find anywhere in the world. Every time I come across one of their stores and now they are online too, it is virtually impossible for me to not enter it and once I enter, to leave without having bought at least one new product from their beautiful stores or skim through their catalogues. Just for the record, I don’t endorse any brands or stores but these are a few of my favourite places. The kitchen section at John Lewis, Habitat, Heals, Crate and Barrel, William Sonoma are a few of my other favourite places to shop for kitchen and homeware.
Over the years, I have clearly collected quite a few and these are most cherished possessions. So as I begin to think about which one is on the top of the list, I can’t help but zero in on my Red Kitchenaid Blender. I have had it for more than 6-7 years now and has been a steady and reliable companion in all the mixing, blending, whipping, crushing, pulsing that I put it through without a sound. And then of course, my good ole Red Dualit Kettle, which I believe has been with me for almost ten years, and indispensable device for my morning coffee and everytime I need it for a pot of boiling water.
Apart from these, the kitchen utensils I have accumulated over the years…infinite number of spatulas and ladles in wood, steel, plastic, silicon to stir, mix, scrap the sides of my pans and pots, my knives, my mezzaluna which is the best piece of equipment for getting your herbs chopped really fine, innumberable chopping boards, my cake pans and tart tins, muffin cases and silicon moulds…the list goes on and on.
And then of course, the dozens of props, which I have collected over more than a decade – I must admit for having a weak corner for serving dishes, platters, bowls, dip trays, plates in all shapes, sizes and shades. The great thing is that now with the blog up and running, these will all be put to good use.
Last but not the least, my collection of cookbooks from my favourite chefs: James Martin, Jamie Oliver, Nigel Slater, Delia Smith, who have been my constant companions on my bookshelves and kitchen workstops, on cold Sunday afternoons, quietly prodding me to discover rarely used ingredients in my pantry and turn out something amazing for my friends, family or just me ( on days I thought I couldn’t bring myself to share the wonderful four-nut brownies made with Delia Smith’s recipe) and whose recipes have not only inspired me to cook but to experiment, try out new recipes and ingredients, give twists to an old classics and above all have fun! Surely, there are many more on my wish list – be it the KitchenAid Stand Mixer, an Aga Oven, a blow torch, foam machine and it continues…if only my kitchen in a Bombay apartment was big enough to accomodate all this and much more…hopefully one day!