• What You Really Need to Set Up House

    After the June wedding, I'm assuming you will have a gorgeous new set of china and shiny silverware, plus a half-dozen plastic salad spinners. Take it from me, you will need a few additional wisely chosen, economically priced odds and ends to get you going in your new establishment.

    Here's my personal list, assembled, honed and whittled by experience, of what's actually needed in a kitchen. Most of the items you can find at your friendly online mega-retailers. I've put in a few links to some hard-to-find things, and I do include a few Glassery products on the list. I expect there will be a few quibbles here and there, as some things are a matter of personal style. For instance, maybe you prefer linen tablecloths to washable woven place mats. No matter. Just do avoid the plastic stuff -- it's soooo Old School.


    • Saucepans, all sizes. You'll want a large stainless steel one for boiling pasta and a small one for melting butter. For the rest, Woll Diamond, a new-generation non-stick technology hand-made in Germany, with tempered glass covers.
    • Large Le Creuset Dutch Oven (For stews, soups and chili)
    • All-Clad non-stick roasting pan
    • Cookie sheets and cooling racks


    • Lots of Anchor-Hocking Bake 'n' Store glass containers with silicone seals, in 2-cup, 5-cup and 12-cup sizes. Keeps vegetables, cheese and leftovers fresher than plastic zip bags do.
    • Lots of Anchor-Hocking stacking square glass storage jars, large and small. Square shape save space.
    • Glassery's Airtight Glass Canister, large size, for storing pasta


    • Set of knives, best you can afford
    • Korin knife sharpening blocks
    • Serrated knife with a point
    • Lots and lots of wooden spoons, ladles, forks and tongs
    • Slotted spoons (silicone or wood)
    • Large stainless steel ladle
    • Spatulas (silicone or wood)
    • Colanders, large and small
    • Strainers, all sizes
    • Pyrex mixing bowls
    • Williams-Sonoma stainless steel measuring spoons and cups 
    • Pyrex or Mason Jar tempered glass measuring cups -- 2 cup and 3-cup
    • Whisks, all sizes -- you can't have too many
    • Cheese slicer
    • Cheese grater
    • Vegetable peeler
    • Wooden cutting boards, all sizes
    • Laurence Brabant 'En Coulisses' Shakers for sugar, salt, pepper and spices
    • Lots of scissors
    • Garlic press
    • Bottle opener
    • Can opener
    • Bread box
    • Garlic skin remover -- looks like a large, short tube made of silicone
    • Granite mortar and pestle, for grinding salt. spices and guacamole
    • Handheld electric mixer -- really, you don't need a big bucks behemoth! 
    • Handheld immersion blender -- easier to clean than the old type
    • Bamboo or steel utensil drawer organizers -- Bed Bath & Beyond carries a selection. 
    • Ice pick -- I inherited my grandfather's back-of-the-drawer ice pick, and it comes in handy in surprising ways, like punching holes in shoe straps
    • Lemon press
    • OrangeX commercial orange press
    • Breville electric juicer
    • Toaster

    Take Tea and See

    • Chemex Teakettle for boiling water
    • Chemex drip coffeemaker, cleaning brush and filter
    • Coffee grinder 
    • Tea ball or teabag press
    • Borosilicate glass teacups for watching tea flowers bloom

    To Go

    • Eco lunch box
    • S'well Bottles -- stainless steel lightweight bottles that keep your tea hot and lemonade cold for many hours. 



    • Korin wineglasses. At the store in Tribeca, salesmen whack them on shelves to demonstrate their amazing durability. Japan is in the glass-making vanguard these days. Sara Japanese Pottery carries gorgeous (but pricey) drinking glasses. For a cheaper alternative, try:
    • Duralex drinking glasses, large and small -- French-made, practically indestructible
    • Olive wood bowls for fruit
    • Washable, woven natural fiber placemats
    • Hemp or cotton napkins from Sara Japanese Pottery
  • ← Next Post Previous Post →
  • Leave a comment