I’ve been part of the Good Cook ‘Kitchen Experts’ team for a while now. Recently we (myself and some of the other experts) were challenged to create our ideal kitchen drawer. I loved this challenge because I had a drawer in my kitchen that had been screaming for a makeover!
The kicker to this challenge was that once we had created our drawer, we were then asked to come up with a great recipe using items from that drawer. We weren’t actually told we had to use items from our selections until after we picked — so coming up with a recipe or two that required me to use mostly items that I selected was a bit tricky, but kinda fun!
In the end I was glad to receive the little push from Good Cook because I decided on some fantastic recipes and definitely will be making these again. After thinking about the selections I made, as well as considering what some of my favorite foods are, I decided on a stuffed burger and a blueberry crumb cake. Both were so delicious and super easy to make! (You can see the full recipe for each by clicking on the picture)
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Revamping a kitchen drawer – space saving ideas
The first thing I had to do was make room for the additional cooking items I was receiving. We got to pick 15 items and had to use at least seven of them in our recipes. I had a drawer in mind were I wanted these items to be stored, but the problem was that the drawer was already jam packed full. To make room, and to save some space, I decided to do a little DIY on my kitchen cabinets.
Space is at a premium in our small kitchen so I took a drawer full of things like aluminum foil and parchment paper, and moved them all to a little cubby I made out of a magazine holder mounted inside my cabinet door.
Here is my drawer before:
All you have to do is find a magazine holder and mount it to the side of your cabinet with a couple of small screws. The magazine holder is the perfect size to hold your rolls of parchment paper, aluminum foil, and plastic wrap. The plastic bags are being phased out in my house so I didn’t really have to worry too much about those, but temporarily relocated them to a shelf under our counter.
Here is my DIY holder:
Now that my drawer was emptied out I simply cleaned it up a bit, added a liner, and filled it with my awesome new tools! The theme of my drawer choices was really, “Swapping Plastic for Stainless Steel, Silicone, and Wood.”
Since we have been more conscious about plastic use in our household I was super excited to be able to replace some of the cheap plastic utensils in my drawer with quality stainless, wood, and silicone utensils. I am really impressed with the quality of everything I got from Good Cook given that they are also so affordable.
Here is what my drawer looked like with my selections (minus the colander which doesn’t fit in the drawer):
Tools in my drawer
Stuffed Burger Press (used in my recipe)
This has become one of my new favorite gadgets. Used in my Crumbled Bacon and Cheese stuffed burger recipe, what was once cumbersome process of trying to make the perfect patty is now something I can now do with ease.
Touch Stainless Steel Turner (used in my recipe)
This stainless steel turner works great for flipping burgers in your cast iron or stainless steel pans. Designed with a modern, horseshoe-shaped cutout to drain fatty juices, longer reach to protect hands from hot pans, and a comfort-grip handle. You could flip dozens of patties, no problem!
This long reach slotted spoon has an ultra modern design and sleek stainless steel construction. The rubberized grip integrates well with the brushed metal, giving the tool a professional look and appeal for serious cooks.
Just what you need to scoop up scrambled eggs or home fries—or dinner, to spoon sauces. The pure brush stainless-steel basting spoon will prove its worth at every meal and looks dressy enough to be invited to the table. Designed with a wider bowl spoon so it’s a little deeper and capable of holding more food and the extended soft touch handle offers a confirm grip to reach to the bottom of deep pots.
A beautiful cooking tool that takes a new turn on the wooden spoon of our grandmothers’ time. The bowl on the wood slotted spoon has three unique slits for draining juices. Crafted from solid blonde beechwood and safe to use on nonstick cookware.
Nonstick Santoku Knife, 5″ (used in my recipe)
One of my favorite knives, this Santoku knive works great on cheese, meat, vegetables, and pretty much anything else you throw at it. The extra large wide fine edge blade is constructed with high carbon steel to maintain its razor edge sharpness and features a nonstick coating to prevent food particles from sticking. Durable contoured soft-grip plastic handle is ergonomically designed to fit comfortably in the hand and full tang knife blade is designed to be the same length and weight as the handle for balance and control, maximizing arm strength. This knife also comes with a protective sheath allowing safe and convenient storage in the kitchen gadget drawer, while conserving the sharpness of the blade. Professionally designed to withstand scratching, bending, breaking, staining, or dulling with regular use.
Nonstick Utility Knife (used in my recipe)
This knife has become one of my husbands favorites and he uses it regularly to quickly chop or dice veggies and fruit (no squished tomatoes!). It’s a true workhorse in the kitchen. The coated nonstick, serrated blade cuts cleanly through juicy foods without crushing or tearing and the long, smooth blade cuts through meats as though it were butter. You’re going to wonder how you managed without this.
Slice delicate garnishes, devein shrimp, or trim fruits and baby veggies with this quality nonstick paring knife. Durable contoured and riveted soft-grip plastic handle is ergonomically designed to fit comfortably in the hand, and features a blade that is the same length and weight as the handle for best control and to take pressure off your wrist joints. This is one simple power tool for the kitchen.
This knife is another one of my favorites. Great for bigger jobs, a chef’s knife is a multitasking basic in every cook’s arsenal—you’ll reach for it repeatedly to chop onions and peppers, slice cheese, even to cut logs of sugar cookie dough. And because ours has a nonstick coating, it cleans up superfast and won’t retain odors—you can switch comfortably from garlic to brownies.
Pastry Blender (used in my recipe)
I have wanted a pastry blender for a long time and I wasn’t disappointed in my first chance using it! It made light work of the crumb topping for my blueberry crumb cake and cleans up in a breeze. Bake flaky crusts and biscuits, extra-soft cookies, or fluffy pancakes using this professional pastry blender. Ideal for soft or firm batter, this high quality pastry blender cuts shortening into flour quickly and efficiently without overworking the dough.
Double-Sided Flip Measuring Cups, Set of 2 (used in my recipe)
These work great for both dry and liquid goods and I love that they don’t take up much space in my drawer as opposed to several measuring cups of differing sizes. This innovative measuring cup set includes 2 cups with pockets that inverts to different measuring capacities of 1/4 cup, 1/3 cup, 1/2 cup, and 1 cup sizes for precise cooking or baking with either liquid or solid ingredients.
Transfer oil, spices, and other liquids into jars, cans or bottles with this attractive and colorful collapsible funnel. It’s perfect for filtering sauces, soups or oil from a deep fryer. The wide mouth and narrow neck make it easy to use for any purpose, while the collapsible design flattens the funnel to 1/3 its size which takes up less storage space in drawers. A must have kitchenware item for compact or RV kitchens where space is limited.
This digital timer has a 19-hour 59-minute duration with the option to count down or up for baking cakes, boiling eggs, or steeping tea to timed perfection and features a magnetic memo clip, which also functions as a stand, allowing convenient display on the fridge, stove, or countertop. The graphics are clearly displayed on the LCD screen with large easy to read digits for up-to-the-minute accurate time readings.
Ideal for deep frying chicken, potatoes, or donuts, and making candy, jelly, or syrup from scratch, this durable thermometer withstands extreme temperatures between 110-400 degrees Fahrenheit for precise cooking. The easy-to-read blue temperature gauge, bold red numeral graphics, and prominent markings make it fast and easy to achieve accurate readings at a glance. It also features an easy-lift pan clip that fits snugly to the side of any pot or pan, as well as a safety grasp for comfortable secure gripping and added safety.
Double Handle Colander (used in my recipe)
I had actually meant to order the stainless steel colander, however, after recieving this one I realized that it is really great for rinsing berries and anything that doesn’t have any heat to it (like pasta water does). It is designed to use with hot items, I just choose to limit how we use plastic in our household and keeping plastic and hot items separate is one thing we’ve been doing more of. I like it because the deep basket has plenty of room for cleaning leafy vegetables and big fruits and the wide, no-slip handles make it easy to grip. Oversized slits in the design let water drain faster.
Win My Drawer or Pick Your Own items to win!
The Build Your Kitchen Drawer Sweepstakes runs June 2, 2014 to July 14, 2014. During this event, you can build your ideal Kitchen Drawer using great Good Cook tools and gadgets. Wondering which products are available? Look for the “ADD ME” icon like the one shown below on the Good Cook website! Additionally, during this contest all items on GoodCook.com are 25% off – there is no code needed just head on over and start shopping.
If you don’t want to build your own drawer, you can let the Good Cook Kitchen Experts (like me) help. Simply choose the featured Kitchen Expert Blogger drawer you like best and enter it for a chance to win. My drawer pictured above will be one of the options!
You can also participate in the Good Cook 5-day product giveaway on Facebook running from June 2-7 for your chance to win selected products you can add to your drawer. There will also be Instant winners! Every drawer entered has a chance to win an instant prize, and participants can submit a new drawer every day for a chance to win.
So tell us….
Which items would you include in your ideal kitchen drawer?