Holiday Cooking Must-Haves

Getting ready to entertain for the holidays? Here are some ESSENTIAL tools and gadgets to make slaving in the kitchen easy as pie.

1. Avocado-Green and Purple Grid Potholder, $7.95, from Sur La Table.

Set these under your hot baking dishes, and voila! bakeware –> serveware. We love the idea of bake to table. Less fuss and less mess!

2. Natural Parchment Paper, $3.99, from Chefs.

Trace the bottom of  your cake pans, cut out and place paper at the bottom of your vessels. You’ll never have a problem turning cakes out again. Also–forget Pam and line your cookie sheets with Parchment for stick-free, perfect cookies every time minus the chemicals.

3. Kuhn Rikon Green Silicone Balloon Whisk (8″ and 10″), $15.95-$19.95, from Sur La Table.

Whether you’re whipping up a roux or stirring a gravy, if you’re using a nonstick pan, it’s better to opt for a silicone-coated whisk in place of metal.

4. 12″ L Potato Masher, $9.99, from Bed Bath & Beyond.

Mashed potatoes, duh!

5. Kitchen Aid Artisan Stand Mixer in Green Apple, $349.99, from Lord + Taylor.

It does everything. A must for holiday baking, and whipping up fresh cream to top your delicacies!

6. Zwilling J.A. Henckles 7-Piece Knife Block Set, $249.99, from Bed Bath & Beyond.

Good, sharp knives are perhaps the most important item on this list. If we know anything for certain, it’s that the holidays mandate a lot of slicing and dicing.

7. Le Creuset Signature Oval Dutch Oven in Red, $145-$490, from Williams-Sonoma.

If your family is anything like ours, there are several mouths to feed. And we all have healthy appetites. We’re a big “seconds” family. A dutch oven feeds a crowd–and caramelizes food beautifully, rendering those good bits on the bottom of the pan that yield award-winning flavor.

8. Sur La Table Silpat Baking Mat, $19.95, from Sur La Table.

Again, a must for holiday baking.

9. Chef’n FreshForce 2-in-1 Pastry Brush, $9.95,  from Sur La Table.

For glazing a roast, buttering warm rolls, icing cinnamon rolls…

10. Polder Deluxe Preset Meat Thermometer, $29.99, from Bed Bath & Beyond.

Overdone meat is a no-no. This thermometer plugs into your meat and sits on the counter. No extra work, but worth it for just right, juicy results.

11. Le Creuset White 7-Piece Tools Set, $69.95, from Sur La Table.

Spatulas of all sizes and shapes are so helpful. Great for draining, scooping, scraping and…licking.

12. Lysol Disinfecting Wipes, $7.99, EVERYWHERE.

With so much traffic in your kitchen, germs are a plenty. Keep things safe and clean with these easy, disposable wipes. Also, store a package in each bathroom to help with last-minute cleanup before a party. 

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