A gift isn’t just for a named day, it’s for anytime you feel like it. That’s how we live anyway. It has inspired us to share with you, the things we like, use and believe in, or would love to have. You don’t actually need an excuse – to cook better is enough !
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We´ll show you the tools we love to give or receive, the ones we love to use every day, and those still on our own wishlist!
Retro treasures authentic and upgraded
Necessary luxuries for the coffee lovers
Little essentials to make cooking easier
Smart chef organisers to store food better
Simple plating up tools for perfect presentation
Storage solutions that really make food last longer
So useful, but not at all necessary
Home bakers would love these
Knives we love to use, both basic and brilliant
Clever microwave tools fast and easy cooking
We´d love to own one of these !
Pretty and oh so useful ´cups´
Students and seniors will want these
Joseph Joesph – this is why we love them
Retro treasures for the nostalgic cook
1949 recreated Toas-tite
We had one of these when I was little and I adored it. My first and best ever ham, cheese n tomato toasties (and the goodies didn’t leak out the sides like our first Breville sandwich maker.) Great for making sweet pies too. It comes with the original recipe book.
Makes for a fabulous campfire supper, but also works on gas, electric, and glass-top stoves, in the fireplace, on a fire pit or BBQ grill.
Do you remember this? If so, it’s probably time to get one for the grandchildren!
Cook anything anywhere Marmite pot
It’s made from heat-resistant clay that is oven safe up to 752 degrees F !!
You can use it to Prepare, simmer, bake & then beautifully present your meals in one vessel
Thanks to modern technology It has a zero crack glaze and an exceptional thermal shock resistance that allows for transfer from hot to cold temperature environments.
Necessary luxuries for the coffee lovers
Coffee scales - with timer too.
The perfect combination to weigh your bean, or coffee grounds.
Time your pre-soak, measure the water quantity added, and time the final pour and wait.
All in one device for coffee connoisseurs to get it right every day… or to just play with precision when you get a new grind or coffee type.
Just like the ones they use in the roastery cafes !
New Aeropress to go !
The most forgiving coffee maker around. I got this for my birthday this year and love love love it – at home or on the go. It suits me because I love both espresso (strong, dark and creamy) and a great filtered coffee (where I can actually taste the notes in the coffee well), because it allows me to really explore the coffee grounds in every way. After espresso I´d say the moka pot comes next as the strongest coffee I can get, then this Aeropress.
Thermal espresso glasses
For the espresso lovers that have to have it hot ( of course ! )
These are the most popular tulip shaped ones from de Longhi.
A set of 2 x 60ml double walled, tempered glasses.
Just pop them in the dishwasher for an easy clean.
Keep your hands comfortable and your drink hot.
By the way, they also keep cold drinks cold !
The ultimate kettle
The most popular Professional coffee maker´s kettle, with the necessary gooseneck spout for a nice even and pour – and at the exact temperature you want. Quick fill, without removing the lid. Soft protective handle and cold spots all over so you can touch it !
Finally, a kettle that works on all stoves including induction.
Very well priced, but if you want a budget one go for the ´Bean Envy´branded one, or just get a gooseneck jug for pour over.
little essentials to make cooking easier
Trusty digital thermometer
We use this a lot ( except when we use sous vide as it does it for us). Comes in many colours, so useful to know if your meat joint, or jam, chocolate, toffee… or even your coffee ! The link will take you to another top rated Lavatools version in the US and Canada.
Microplane zester grater
I’ve decided, cooking is not so easy, or fun without this. So I bring it with me in my suitcase ! We use it for very finely grated lemon, lime, fluffy parmesan, minced garlic, nutmeg and ginger. Makes the parmesan so ‘fluffy’ and go so much further. Special !
silicone baking mats
These ones are the standard size, and great quality, but there are more options. Check what size you need for your own oven.
We do love Oxo tools ! We’re always tempted by stainless steel and you can get steel basters, but we like to be able to see whats inside here, and the measurements are so useful. Also the little notch so you can set it down without it dribbling ! And of course the heat safe silicone bulb, and the tip can be removed to wash them out easily.
We use this so often every day ! Its a great length ( 29 x 6 x 2cm ), easy to use with the thumb hold and ridges at the top and the polyamide material make it feel strong, yet flexible. Super for turning and lifting things like bacon, sausage, herbs, pasta, fruit and veggies – probably not strong enough for big steaks etc. Dishwasher safe, and can withstand heats up to 260 ºc / 509°F. Had forgotten how cheap they were too !
Mini precision scales
For measuring very small quantities of things like bicarb of soda, concentrate essence… as well as big weighs ! Paul uses them for molecular cooking.
Some bigger essentials too
Simple, long lasting, essential as a first board.
Chef boards set with stand
Colour means everything.
5 really useful tools for plating up
A plating up tool for the foodie who likes a beautiful plate. These tweezers will be perfect for precise control to lift and delicately place food on the plate.
Squeezy squirty bottles
Great for presenting sauces, holding home made condiments. So easy to paint on a plate. We use these all the time, as do restaurants.
Any dish looks better when it´s presented in these ! Starters, mains, or desserts. We never had these so posh… with the handy trays for underneath.
Oxo dusting wand
Tiny yet so useful for sieving or sprinkling on a plate.
Plate Art tool
Make pretty plate presentations with sauces and purées with this pen. It even has an ink well… a sauce well I mean! The small pen for drawing thin lines, and a bigger one for tick lines and dots. I’m torn between this cheaper ( and it’s so cheap !) plastic handled one because it should be more non-slip – and the beautiful stainless steel chef style version.
3 Smart metal organisers
Magnetic knife strip
We kept this too but it’s still in an attic waiting… So handy to just pop the knives on the strip. Put it on the wall so it doesn’t take up counter space. It doesn’t have to be this one for you… choose the right look and size for your knives and wall.
FIFO can stacker
FIFO stands for ‘First in First out’ . Sit this organiser on your shelf to make sure you can see all those cans, and use the oldest ones first. Genius !
Keep your fruit and veggies separate and well aired, and they´ll last a lot longer. There´s a whole variety of styles of tiered baskets if you click through. We happen to like this simple net style one.
Make your fresh food last longer
This really works ! Keeps bananas fresh for weeks in the fridge. We use it all the time, although now we’re in the Canaries, the bananas are so delicious they get eaten fast anyway.
Beat the ethylene !
Pop one of these blue apples or the equivalent top product in your country ) and eliminate that ethylene gas that causes your food to go off fast. We´ll take you to the best product in your country ‘ we got the green one for a few family members, and they love it. It really works 🙂
not necessary, but sooooo handy !
This is so useful, and popular with gadget lovers. So much so that the one we take you through to is out of stock. But if that´s the case for you, just look for the one in the picture – it´s even better with a cutting edge too !
Handy bracelet flask
A bit of fun, and a great stocking filler. Holds 100ml, so I guess okay for travelling by plane and hands free too. Carries water too ! P.S. We don’t have one of these … yet.
Cheese and Charcuterie board
This board has a place for everything. No need to search for lots of crockery and cutlery to serve at the end of a meal – it’s already prepared for you. Great if, like us, you like to entertain others, or yourselves !
Pots and pans we´ve used for years !
Anolon pan set
Every day pans from cook to chef ! We loved this set, and added the casserole / wok style one to it. The little milk pan is so useful with it’s little lip.
We used both Circulon & Anolon as they are from the same manufacturer. The Circulon sets are a little cheaper and meant to be more a cooks pan, and the Anolon a chefs pan. We´ve had both and love them so check them out.
This is so useful on the stove like a wok pan, or in the oven. There are actually two of these we like…. it depends on the dimensions that suit you and your oven and cooking. The one here is a deeper pan and is an Anolon one. If you prefer a wider, less deep casserole, try the more shallow circulon model instead. Remember Anolon and Circulon are made by the same manufacturer.
4 things perfect for the home baker
What a lovely way to finish off your home made biscuits. Great for presentation at home, or when giving as a gift.
Makes them much more tempting to eat – they’re better for you when they’re home-made, right !
Silicone baking moulds
These are also so useful, and the shape makes your work look more professional ! Use them for mini cakes, muffins, bread, mousse, jelly, chocolate or even soap making ! Use your imagination. We use them also for storing making little blocks of leftovers in the freezer too. We’ll take you to a different supplier in America.
For healthy donut making, check out this amazing silicone donut tray for oven baked donut shaped buns with a hole in the middle !
Extra tall cake cover
Perfect for the Christmas panettone. We got this in the UK. In the US and Canada we take you to a different, cool set of food covers instead.
Bamix Baking Set
This is real treat for some lucky baker ! It’s the luxury Bamix Superbox hand blender set with all the blades, accessories, and attachments including the big processor. Such a minimalist and high quality feel to this Swiss designed machine. It’s top notch, lasts a lifetime ( people say 40 yrs it’s so good), and even has a warranty of 10 years ! oh, and a recipe booklet is also included but you’ll see them demonstrating new recipes all the time on facebook and Instagram.
Basic and brilliant knives we use.
Big chef's knife
We have lots of knives but we couldn’t live without this one. It’s our favourite for chopping everything, also using the side to smash garlic, and the heel for chopping small stuff. If we only had two knives it would be a big chef knife like this, and a next serrated one. We can’t live without them and even took them in our suitcase to Mallorca and back again.
Wusthof is a top brand, from the famous knife-making part of Germany. Everyone needs a great serrated knife, and we don’t just use it for bread ! Pop over to our ‘How to spatchcock a chicken‘ post and see Paul using it there.
Chefs knife set
Nicely balanced knives. People look so hard and spend so much on knives, but these have never failed us. So we brought them with us ! Apart from these, we add some little kitchen devils for completion.
The 3 small professional grade tools we love using most
Our Bamix Swissline set
Our favourite professional level hand blender. We use it every day. It’s just BRILLIANT ! It lasts forever – people say 40 years and is so simple and strong. You can blend in a crystal glass or in a pan of boiling jam. The chopping bowl also grinds and pulverizes so you can get so creative. I use it ever day. The SliceSy accessory is on my own wishlist ;).
Our Sous Vide tool
Smart cooking simplified. Use this for the perfect steak, eggs, pickles… almost anything ! Easy, scientific cooking, restaurant style. It just makes it better. We bought it, use it , love it !
Our Bron Mandoline
This is the one we have. It’s a classic ! Stainless steel, and made in France ! It’s built for professionals but used at home by lots of keen cooks like ourselves. It can slice, julienne, chip, waffle, and ripple cut as thick or thin as you need. When you buy it, *** make sure you get the safety guard…or buy it separately !!! and maybe some steel protection gloves if you’re a beginner.***
It’s the most expensive mandoline we recommend, but Paul has picked out a really good lower priced one (click here to see it on Amazon UK ) for you too !
3 things on own wishlist… would love these !
If you love fine wine, you’ll need one of these. We had the luxury of seeing how this works when we were treated to a vintage port tasting by a friend in Oporto, Portugal last year… very impressive ! Without that we wouldn’t have had such an amazing treat.
It leaves the cork in whilst a needle very finely extracts the wine, or port or whatever fine corked vintage you want to preserve. So you don’t need an excuse any more to open that bottle of wine !
Ooni Koda pizza oven
Oooh I so want one of these, but whilst we’re renting it’s not possible. Maybe when we settle a bit more and know exactly where we’ll be living for a while. Finnish brand Ooni make the best outdoor pizza ovens – if you’re interested – read our in depth review too.
A portable, smart cooking system like this
This is the Heston Cue one – a smart induction burner cooktop, with an 11-Inch smart frying pan, and it comes with a recipe app for your phone / ipad ( Bluetooth-Enabled ) with recipes and step by step instructions ! So easy for perfect cooking, learning recipes and even learning more about the science of cooking.
It monitors and controls the cooking temperature precisely and evenly to ensure perfect results. So it can be used by children (supervised ) upwards ! recipes from quick & easy to chef’s video guided recipes.
Both pretty and useful cups for blending in, drinking & eating , and storing !
Triple walled vacuum, insulated stainless steel food jars by Mira
Apart from being gorgeous, we love these for the colours ,the smooth quality, and the fact that we could blend our soups or smoothies straight into the jar ! This is on our wish list !
Malt cups !
These are so useful. You can use them to blend your smoothies, make cocktails etc. Drink straight from the cup – very ’50s. We found these when we discovered it was one of the most popular things people buy when they get a Bamix hand blender – the base is nice and wide to fit a blender end into. (3.8 ” base, 30 oz capacity). The button below takes you through to one cup, but if you want more, for better value, choose this set of six instead.
These are so useful. 6 Wide Mouth Mason style Ball Jars (500ml / 16 oz ) with Airtight lids and Bands. Great for storing dried beans and spices. Perfect for sous vide, canning, pickling, preserving and fermenting fruits & veggies for up to 18 mths. Freezer, microwave and dishwasher safe. Has a lovely label line for writing dates & contents. We like the wide mouth ones so you can get your hand blender or big ladles in ! The lid has a special dull sound so you can test if it’s sealed fully. Also a gorgeous vintage decorative look so you can have them on an open shelf… as a wee flower vase, or for putting gifts in ! Use it for anything – your overnight oats, cocktails, smoothies, desserts, salads etc.
Great for students, seniors, or starter cooks
Whether you’re starting out on your own, or wanting to simplify, these inexpensive tools will take you a long way in your cooking adventures.
the best starter hand blender to get, for blending soups mostly. Such a bargain price too – how can they even make it for that !
Basic slow cooker
So cheap and couldn´t be simpler to get a good wholesome meal cooked once a day.
The Whatever Pan
The best griddle pan we’ve seen. It can go in the oven easily, has a lid, and is nice and deep. And don’t you love the name.
Don’t forget to also order the silicone handle covers as well, because the handles can get really hot ! That’s the only downside. You’ll usually find the red handles in the ‘frequently bought together’ section.
Versatile Microwave cooking !
Fasta pasta cooker
What I love about this gadget is that the cooking vessel is also the storage container – all in one ! I like to cook my pasta in advance (Paul doesn´t, of course. ) I cook, then let it go cold, then reheat with the sauce. That way , it´s better for me ( less carbs). So I can leave my pasta in the fridge to cool and also use it for any leftover dinner.
Sistema rice cooker
No more burning the rice, and the pan ! Perfect for cooking fluffy rice or grains, and even for pasta and veggies. It works like a steamer in the microwave. One user even report cooking their fish with vegetables in it !
Microwave popcorn maker
Heat resistant silicone with a cute and handy folding lid. We love popcorn as a healthy snack, and you don’t need any oil or butter to cook these in a microwave with these. They’re also single serve size ( there’s a guide inside for 40 g / 1.5 Oz), so you won’t overdo the popcorn between meals !
We just love Joseph Joseph
We love the design, that ideas they come up with, and the gorgeous soft matt finish, not to mention all the subtle and bright colourways. Click through below to find your favourite colours and products. We also love the cut and carve chopping board and the salt and pepper sets !
Microwave rice cooker & more
Perfect for cooking fluffy rice or grains. Users even report cooking pasta and lots more in it ! Well designed. Prepare, cook and serve in one stylish dish.
Food bowls & cups nest
Comes in different colourways, we got the 9 piece multicolour set as a gift from family and love it. So useful, it has a 4.5 Litre mixing bowl, 3 Litre colander, 1.65 Litre sieve, 0.5 Litre mixing bowl, and five measuring cups. Also a handy non slip base and carry handles.
Clever Knife organiser
Again, such a clever solution. And so stylish too.