Here are a few of my favorite gadgets that I find delightful in my kitchen. (I’m no expert chef, so these may well be old news to more seasoned cooks!)
Ball whisk — I find that this works waaaay better than a normal whisk to get rid of lumps and keep the bottom of custards, etc. from cooking to the pot or pan.
Mexican hot chocolate mixer (or “Molinillo”) — This is basically a lathe-turned pretty stick with a ball at the end that’s hollow with holes in the sides, which help make chocolate melt and distribute better through heated milk. Sure, you don’t use it often, but it’s damn efficient when you do! It’s also great for breaking up eggy custard that cooked too long, separating vanilla caviar, removing gravy lumps, etc.
Williams-Sonoma 3-pc spatula set — These are just better than other spatulas, and the big one is BIG! Worth it.
KitchenAid Artisan stand mixer and ice cream maker attachment — PHENOMENAL gift. This attachment is so much fun! (I’m pretty sure they do a standalone version, too.) Love not having to churn or use salt, and loooooove being able to make my own experimental flavors.
Microplane graters and zesters — I got on this train fairly late. THESE ARE SO MUCH BETTER THAN OTHER ZESTERS.
Pancake pen — SO MUCH EASIER for pancakes, waffles, cupcakes & muffins.
Wide-mouth funnel — So much easier for filling my pancake pen.
Funnel with strainer — SO great for, well, straining while funneling. And I like these stainless steel funnels since they’re safe for all temperatures and types of food.
Stainless steel baster with flavor injector and brush – This is so much less sketchy than a plastic baster, and I love the little injecty thing that I’ve never actually used. Shut up. I love it in theory.