Home & Garden
Anyone from Pakistan who loves cooking must be aware of the most commonly used items in a Pakistani kitchen. Of course, if you have a fully functional kitchen already, it must be furnished with all the kitchen tools you need for your daily cooking. However, for women who are in the process of setting up their kitchens and need a checklist of kitchen tools they will essentially require, here is a comprehensive list of items that kitchens in every Pakistani household are always in need of:
Perhaps no Pakistani kitchen would be considered complete if it did not have a tawa, usually a black-colored round metallic plate, which is used to make our staple food items like chapati and paratha. The kind of tawa you see in the picture is also used for frying things like kebabs and eggs in many households. Some Pakistani homes make roti on ulta tawa, which looks like an upside down black metallic bowl.
More commonly known as chimta locally, a tong is almost as important as important as a tawa since it is used to flip roti and paratha when they are being cooked. Usually, made of metal, tongs are available in different sizes, with the larger ones usually reserved to make chapati while the smaller ones are used for frying items like pakoras.
If you have a tawa and a tong but no rolling pin, you might as well say goodbye to your plan of making a chapati. Rolling pin, or bailan, is used to spread out the flour dough to give it the shape of round flat bread and is a kitchen tool that you will need everyday. Those who are interested in baking things like cookies and pies will also need a rolling pin to roll out cookie dough or pie crust.
Ginger and garlic pastes are among the most essential ingredients used in Pakistani cuisine and majority of Pakistani women prefer making these at home. With the sil batta used by our grandmothers almost obsolete now, they have been replaced by the much more efficient and speedy kitchen gadgets we all know as blenders. Apart from grinding masalas, blenders can also be used for making chutneys, liquefying fruits to make juices and smoothies and even make milk shakes.
In recent years, the introduction of hand blenders have made the blending and grinding tasks much easier, so much so that you can even grind vegetables or haleem right in the saucepan.
Although women who are experts at cutting vegetables may still prefer to use their hands, using a cutting board makes the task much easier, especially when cutting chicken and meat. Moreover, a cutting board helps in chopping salad items with greater efficiency. You can get cutting boards in materials like wood and plastic, with wooden cutting boards being the more preferred among the two since it is considered to be safer and more hygienic.
Although peelers are not exclusively used in local households, they are a must-have for your kitchen as they reduce the frustratingly long time consumed in peeling the skin off different vegetables with knives. In fact, peelers work with much more precision than a knives, ensuring less wastage alongside.
No matter how perfect you consider yourself to be at beating an egg and making an omelet, you can never create the perfect frothy egg mixture with a fork and, therefore, need a whisk. Whisks and beaters are also necessary for mixing cake and pudding batters.
SHEARS & SCISSORS
Shears are extremely useful in chopping slices of green chilies for garnishing haleem, nihari or paye. They can also be used to cut meats like chicken and beef into thin strips. Moreover, it is always practical to keep a small pair of scissors exclusively for your kitchen as you will need it all the time when opening masala packets or even a bag of spaghetti.
MEASURING CUPS, SPOONS & SCALE
If you love baking then measuring cups and spoons are going to become your best friends. Without accurate measurements as stated in the recipe, baked items like cakes, pies and puddings can turn into a disaster. They come in handy especially when following a recipe from a cookbook or television channel.
It is also recommended for you to get a kitchen scale that can help you determine the exact quantity of ingredients required for a recipe. For instance, it is difficult to measure 250 grams of butter using a spoon, but the task becomes simple if you have a measuring scale at hand to help guide you.
Those households where rice is the main staple food can vouch for the importance of strainers. Strainers are also required to discard water used to boil items like vegetables and spaghetti. Additionally, they can be used to wash vegetables and meat. You can easily find metal or plastic strainers in the market. It is usually better to buy metal strainers since there is always a risk that plastic might melt if it comes in contact with boiling water. You will also need a small-sized strainer as it is essential for making tea.
Having storage containers and Ziploc bags at hand is very important because they help in storing leftovers as well as frozen items such as kebabs and samosas. They help you organize your freezer and refrigerator efficiently. Make sure you buy storage containers in various sizes to store different quantities of leftovers. Moreover, while bigger Ziploc bags are excellent for storing frozen foods, smaller bags can be used to pack school lunches for your kids.