Friday, September 3, 2010

Ode to the 3 quart sauce pan.

Mine is this one:
It is made by Lagostina.  It has a lid and I use it EVERY DAY!

So if you need more room in your kitchen I will tell you how this lovely sauce pan replaces at least 3 kitchen appliances that you think you need.

#1 the electric water kettle:

I must admit, the idea of auto shut off on this cordless electric water kettle is appealing but let's just think for a minute.  The base of this appliance must stay on the counter or if you store it away in your cupboards you will forever be searching for the base of this thing.  Frustrating to say the least.  Either way, it takes up space in your cupboard or on your counter.  If you are concerned that you will forget that you put water on to boil in the 3 quart sauce pan, just set a timer for 5 min.  You probably have a microwave nearby so you can use the timer.  (BTW: all pans can replace your microwave ;)

Okay okay... there is a compromise, if you must have a separate implement to boil water, this lives on your stove and looks adorable:

You can probably find a really cute one at your local thrift store for less than $5.  Since it lives on your stove you don't need to worry about it taking up counter space and it whistles, so you won't forget that you wanted to make yourself a french press full of coffee. 

#2 Popcorn makers:

These come in all shapes and sizes and this vendetta against popcorn makers has nothing to do with the fact that the Cuisinart burnt the heck out of two of my fingers because the tiny little handles they put on that thing are ridiculous.  The air poppers never never leave you without a plethora of unpopped kernels in the bottom of your bowl or without rubbery popcorn.  The stove top "back to basic" type models are a glorified pan, for people unable to shake?  At least the glorified pan model makes good popcorn and doesn't try to maim you in the process.  And they ALL take up extra space when you already have....*insert trumpet fanfare* a 3 quart sauce pan that perfectly does the job.

Take your 3 quart sauce pan, put about 2 Tbsp of oil in the bottom (coconut oil is the best but any oil will do), put in 1/4 cup of popcorn kernels and put the lid on... give it a little shake to get all the kernels oily and layered evenly on the bottom.  Turn your stove on high.  When the first kernel pops, shake every 10 seconds or so and place back on the heat for 10 seconds.  You don't need to stand here with a timer or anything... you'll learn and be so good at it you won't even have to think.  When you don't hear popping for about 10 to 20 seconds they are probably mostly all popped.  And it tastes so so good.

#3 The rice cooker:

The excuses for a rice cooker are numerous... among them:

It cooks it perfect every time!  - yes but it's coated in plastic so it won't stick which eventually will leech into your food.  And even though it might take a little practice to cook rice on the stove top you too can learn.  I used to not be able to do it but out of the necessity of decluttering and freeing up space in my kitchen I learned how to cook rice on the stove top.  Perfectly.  Maybe not the first time but within the first 10 times.

I can put it on a timer! - that may be true but if you are scheduled so tight that you can't make time to cook rice (depending on the type of rice 10 min- 45 min)  maybe you should reconsider your schedule.  Just a thought.

It cooks other things too!  - so do the various sizes of pans that you already have and will always keep.  I'm sure one of them even has a steamer that fits on it.

Just think, if you get rid of TWO of those bulky appliances, how much more space will you have?  You will have freed up almost 2 square feet of real estate in your kitchen!  And no more swearing looking around for the myriad of parts that inevitably come with those small "convenience" appliances.


  1. For your kids it could replace a drum set... hahaha! Good blog... fun to read!

  2. I love that darling little kettle :)
    those popcorn makers are just awesome too!


  3. Okay, I have a pan and a kettle, and I use the kettle more than I use the pan. . .

  4. Clever girl. Already swore off popcorn air-popper, after burning out two. They're generally made so cheap that they don't last. Funny how many things we think we need now, that our grandmothers lived without.

  5. Ok, I hear you,, but I HAVE to have my rice cooker.. it's off to the side and never in my way and I can set it and forget it! Plus it keeps rice warm with out burning.. my rice cooker is my friend. I have a lives on the stove teakettle. LOVE it. And I have the glorified pan with the turn crank for popcorn specifically for KETTLE CORN!! you simply (or I can't) make excellent kettle corn in a 3 quart pot,.. you have to coat the corn with the molten sugar evenly and you can't do that in a plain old pan. The air popper thing I totally agree on, it makes HORRID popcorn, takes far to long and I use mine as a large spoon and knife holder.. giggles.

  6. well at least you get some use out of your air popper!