I have a lovely homestead kitchen. There is plenty of space, the counter top is stone, the sink looks over the busy dining area, and wide glass doors lead to a patio. Still, as with anyone who spends plenty of time in this room, I am always designing my “dream” kitchen in the back of my mind.
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After becoming a (mostly) stay-at-home mom and farm dweller, I have become especially invested in my homestead kitchen. I am using this post to organise the jumbled list that floats around in my head. It will also serve to provide ultimate gift ideas for my husband (right, honey?).
First, though, I’m going to share just a few of the items in my kitchen that I already use and love. No homestead kitchen would be complete without a cast iron skillet. I made this relatively small investment five years ago and we have used it every day since.
I also more recently purchased this food processor (which I’m now seeing is cheaper on Amazon than the store where I bought mine!). This is not the most expensive brand, but mine has held up well through the tasks I’ve asked of it. Grated cheese for a roaster pan full of mac, a season’s peppers for relish, a smooth meat paste for kofta… A food processor has become an essential part of my kitchen. Especially if you process large amounts of food at once (and if you grow a garden you do), I can’t recommend a food processor enough.
My homestead kitchen wishlist
These are the items I often borrow or long for. In places where I have specified brands, it is because I have received personal recommendations for those products that have convinced me to include them. These are simply the items I would buy if I was to go on an unlimited kitchen shopping spree.
A Bosch Mixer
So, I used to want a Kitchenaid. They’re so popular and cute with all the trendy little colours. But then my mom burned hers out (twice), and I began to hear of other home cooks who had taken them to task and been thoroughly disappointed. I have been convinced that Bosch mixers are where it’s at. They’re a little pricier, but I think it would be worth the peace of mind knowing that it can handle just about anything you might throw at it.
An All American Pressure Canner
Confessions of a homestead blogger: I have only been canning on my own for a couple years. Before that I kind of rode along on the coat tails of my domesticated family and friends. However, as I begin to enjoy preserving more and more, I am convinced that the next step is to start pressure canning (on my own!). It is intimidating, which is exactly why I lust after an All American pressure canner. The clamping wing nuts seem much more secure, and the gasket-free metal-on-metal sealing system seems much more attractive than the alternatives.
The price of this piece of equipment seems pretty high, but I’m sure it would easily pay itself off with the variety of food I could begin to preserve.
Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving
Speaking of home preserving, the Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving is the ultimate resource. Of course the price is non-prohibitive, but for some reason I haven’t added it to my kitchen yet. I know, from browsing the book that is owned by friends, that it is full of basic information, but also imaginative recipes. I sometimes rely on recipes from the internet, which are not always safe. This cookbook will be a step in the right direction to having everything I need for complete canning on a shelf in my homestead kitchen.
A Maslin Pan
I have a stock pot, of course. I couldn’t do without it. But it turns out I’m greedy, and I also really want a maslin pan. One of these wide-mouth pans would turn jam making into a scorch-free breeze. It could also help with maple syrup reducing, or making large pots of stew. My main requirement would be a nice thick bottom to the pan. While they can be had for fairly cheap I would, of course, want the pricey one that comes with a lid.
Really Good Knives
Knives have been the bane of our kitchen existence, but we actually own a few decent ones now. We store them on a magnetic knife strip, which is a favourite feature of our kitchen. In fact, we frequently buy these strips off Amazon for wedding gifts as they’re unique and oh-so-practical. I would love to pay upwards of $100 for each of our knives, but for now I’ll settle for one really good chef’s knife.
A Vitamix Blender
I actually don’t have a full-size blender. This is because I have burned out several blenders since I first moved out. While I frequently use my bullet blender and especially my stick blender, there are tasks that require a real blender. I have used A Vitamix Blender at a friends house, and it is a beast. I really doubt I will ever pony up the cash for one of these machines. Maybe I will eventually purchase a refurbished Ninja blender. It’s much more affordable and would probably still do everything I need, and more.
Stainless Steel Drinking Cups
My dream kitchen is plastic and teflon free. While that would be hard to achieve, stainless steel is an overlooked option for kitchenware. Of course glass is also readily available, but with a toddler in the house we need a non-breakable option. When I was growing up some friends had stainless steel drinking cups, which I always thought was a great idea. While I get most of my kitchenware secondhand, these cups may be worth the price as they would last forever.
Of course I already use and love stainless steel drinking straws.
While this list is not exhaustive, these are the items that I would most like to add to my homestead kitchen. What do you most dream about having that would help with your day-to-day cooking?