Would you like to put into practice what you learned during your Italian vacation? You need the right tools!
Here are 14 utensils that we consider to be the most essential to prepare Italian food.
For full-flavored dishes
Most Italian recipes are simple and don’t require many ingredients, but the flavors make all the difference. Think of a bowl of spaghetti, how grated parmesan is the perfect, final touch. Or how soffritto infuses every dish with delicious aromas. And for great soffritto, our chef Ivan recommends having a mezzaluna knife for its versatility. Great for mincing herbs, and finely cut vegetables, like onions, celery and tomatoes. Another tool, the garlic press (it. spremiaglio), makes it easier to achieve one of Italy’s most distinctive flavors. And let’s not forget a traditional cheese grater (grattugia) and a pepper grinder (macinapepe), for perfect pici pasta.
For coffee lovers
True, most Italians will prefer an espresso from a ‘bar’ or have converted to coffee pod machines, but we bet you to find an Italian kitchen without a moka pot. Great for caffellatte in the morning, it also comes in handy when preparing tiramisu.
For making fresh pasta from scratch
If you want to freshen up the pasta-making skills you picked up at one of our cooking classes, you cannot do without a rolling pin (mattarello). If you’ve caught the bug, our chef Alessandro recommends investing in a hand-crank pasta machine. You’ll be able to make fettuccine and tagliolini, as well as flat dough sheets for lasagne, ravioli, cannelloni, tortellini. If you’re looking to advance your skills, a gnocchi board is ideal. Obvious but essential, a colander (scolapasta)!
For traditional dishes
Sophisticated technology may have overtaken the kitchen, but our chef Francesco finds that a good old food mill (passaverdure) is always useful, a sieve with muscle. No other tool can mash and strain soft chunks of food more neatly and less strenuously, all at one time. Perfect for Italian staples such as minestrone soup and tomato sauce, but also mashed potatoes and jams. If you like polenta and risotto, then you’ll also need a wooden spoon (cucchiaio di legno) with a hole, recommends our chef Alessandro.
For all the rest
Our chef Ivan favorite utensils are the cooking skimmer (schiumarola), to take food out from hot oil, the whisk (frusta), to whip eggs for both savory and sweet recipes and finally, an aluminum pan for frying vegetables – Ivan’s piece de resistance!