Dinner Select - Meal Planning

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 ♦ Favorite Cooking Equipment ♦

When planning to cook more meals at home, consider whether you have the right cooking equipment.  Besides the usual pots and pans and measuring cups and spoons, there are a few other things that make it easier - and more fun - to cook at home.  See our top 5 picks below.

1. Sharp chef and paring knives. Cooking with fresh herbs and vegetables requires a lot of chopping (Dinner Select meals can be prepared in less than an hour including chopping time).  Invest in a high quality chef knife and paring knife. We rarely use any other knife.

2. Big cutting board. Give yourself room with a nice big cutting board, but be sure it can still fit in the dishwasher.

3. Pasta pot with steamer basket.  We recommend steaming vegetables rather than boiling to preserve more of the nutrients and to help retain the color and flavor of the vegetable. A big pasta pot with a steamer basket is especially useful when boiling pasta anyway.

4. Handheld electric blender. We recommend a handheld blender in lieu of a food processor. It doesn't do all the jobs a food processor does, but takes a lot less storage space. We use ours to purée baby food, make breadcrumbs from day-old crusty bread, and to purée soups to give them a creamy texture.

5. Meat thermometer. Nothing fancy…look for a simple digital meat thermometer that gives an immediate temperature. This takes the guesswork out of knowing when the meat is cooked. It gives you confidence so you aren’t tempted to visually check doneness by cutting into the meat and losing the juices.

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