Cooking Equipment No-Nos

No-Nos

The tools you use in the kitchen are an investment that helps you be a better cook. You have spent a lot of money accumulating this equipment, and if they are not taken care of properly they will not last. Here are the best ways to take care of your kitchen equipment.

Knives

Despite what the manufacturer says, do not wash your knives in the dishwasher. The strong spray and the harsh dishwashing detergents will dull your knives. It is also a safety hazard; many people have cut themselves removing knives from the dishwasher.

Keep your knives in the best shape possible by never storing them loose in a drawer. Storing knives in a drawer can dull them, and it is a health hazard. Cutting yourself while reaching into a drawer filled with knives is dangerous. Invest in a good knife rack instead.

Cookware

The biggest mistakes you can make with non-stick coated cookware is to use sharp tools on them. Use wooden, plastic, or silicon tools when cooking. Another mistake is using cooking spray on a non-stick pan. This causes build-up and discoloration. Cooking with a non-stick pan over high heat is also a no-no. This can disperse toxic chemicals into the air and loosen the non-stick coating.

When using non-coated stainless steel pans, always preheat them with a drizzle of cooking oil. Another mistake with stainless steel cookware is over-crowding the pan. This will result in steamed food rather than sauteed.

Cast iron cookware will last a lifetime if properly taken care of. One of the biggest mistakes that a cook can make is using a scouring pad or other abrasive methods for cleaning cast iron pans. Rinsing in warm water and drying it with a paper towel or a soft cloth is the best way to clean it. For stuck on food, boil hot water to loosen the food, or try natural sea salt.

Wooden Utensils and Blenders

Never soak wooden cutting boards, spatulas, and other items in water. This can warp these items and loosen the glue that holds the cutting board together. Wash them quickly in warm water and immediately dry them.

Never overfill a blender or food processor. This can result in uneven blending, as well as leaks.

Above all else, always follow the manufacturer’s instructions, except in regards to knives. Not only will it give you important instructions, it will also give you valuable tips and tricks.

http://cookingequipment.about.com/od/cookware/f/Nonstick-Vs-Uncoated-Cookware-Which-Should-I-Choose.htm