Little Rock’s culinary experts give their top five kitchenware items no Southern home should be without.
Judy Adams, owner of Catering to You
Indispensable items for Southern recipes
• A necessary Southern kitchen essential is a wire whisk. Wisks of various sizes are essential for many items at Catering to You — whipping cream, eggs, sauces, gravies, vinaigrettes, and of course, our famous cream pies!
• A baker’s hardwood rolling pin that is fitted with a rod and handle — we could not make our famous chicken and dumplings without it! Our chef’s secret is to mix, roll and cut for a long time to get the perfect dumplings.
• No Southern kitchen is complete without a cast iron skillet. They are almost impossible to damage, are best for holding heat, are perfect for browning meats and vegetables, and they cook faster. And, of course, you need a cast iron skillet to prepare southern fried chicken!
For a selection of Southern delights visit Catering to You, 8121 Cantrell Road
Casey Finch, owner of The Full Moon
Best for less hassle
My vote for Top Kitchen Essential would be the amazing Chic Wrap. Not only is it pretty enough to leave out of the drawer, it’s the best and easiest way to dispense plastic wrap ever — no more wads of wasted plastic wrap! It’s so easy, even my kids can do it.
Best for tailgating
As a busy mom of three, I need to make things ahead of schedule. Whether I’m planning a picnic, tailgate or weeknight dinner, I can make the meals ahead of time, store them in Le Cadeaux Melamine serving pieces, cover them tight with Chic Wrap and then voilà — ready to go when I need them!
Both items available at The Full Moon, 3625 Kavanaugh Blvd
Linda Wofford, owner of The Everyday Chef
Best for recipes
As The Spur Stirs by Jacqueline Cavender is one of the most beautiful yet “home cook-friendly” cookbooks I have seen in a while. The recipes may be written by a famous person you will recognize or by one of the many Cavender family and friends. The illustrations are so beautiful, they make you want to try each recipe. Even better, the sales benefit the American Cancer Society and cystic fibrosis research. This is a “win-win” for anyone who loves to cook.
Best for heavy-duty cooking
Our customers are very excited that cookware has been reintroduced by MacKenzie-Childs. Along with a great roaster is a fantastic selection of pots as well. They are enameled inside and can stand up to the rigors of everyday cooking. The classic Courtly Check pattern adorns the outside, and each lid has a distinct finial. This is form, fit and function at its best.
Both items available at The Everyday Chef, 11525 Cantrell Road, Suite 206