Worth replacing: Tuscan salt cellar

Hey there! I’m baaaack! Although I’ve returned from holidays I have done nothing at all to get caught up yet (in fact my plane got in just last night). So, if you had a question or sent me an email, please be patient. I hope to be back on top of things in a few days.

In the meantime, I’d like to introduce you to a new blog section I’m adding. For the next few months — likely every Monday — I’m going to showcase cooking equipment and convenient food products that I think are Worth Replacing. Although I spend a lot of my time telling the world what’s new and next on the food scene, people also often ask me to recommend good basic and classic kitchen items. That’s what “Worth Replacing” is all about. In this forum I’ll recommend the items that I would replace without hesitation if mine were suddenly missing.

First up: My Salt Cellar.

It doesn’t look like much. In fact, it’s chipped and sort of dodgy looking but I adore this basin with its hinged wood lid. I use it many times a day to measure salt for recipe testing or to grab a few grains to sprinkle over my meal. Besides providing much easier access to measured salt than a shaker, this particular salt cellar has sentimental value. I bought it in Tuscany in the village of Artimino on my honeymoon over 12 years ago. It’s the only souvenir I brought back and having it in my kitchen has a certain corny sentimentality for me.

Do you have an emotional attachment to any cooking tools or equipment in your kitchen? If so, dish it out!

5 Responses to Worth replacing: Tuscan salt cellar

  1. Other than my knives, which go without saying, the next most important item in my kitchen is my electronic scale. I bought a professional model for $200 before there were any cheaper models available for the home kitchen. Although I do lot of measuring by sight and feel, when I need to measure with more precision, out comes the scale. (I even made a video about it: http://xrl.us/ok9hx)

  2. Kathryn says:

    What a wonderful idea. A reason to like Mondays better. 😉

    The things in my kitchen that I have a sentimental attachment to are the items that were my Grandmother’s (cookie cutters, a chopper); my Mother’s (bowls, knives, aga pot & frying pan); or items given to/made by my Father (wall mounts for my Mother’s rolling pin — I have the mounts, my niece, the rolling pin, a shelf unit that I use as a spice rack, an old-fashioned egg beater).

    Perhaps the least used, but most adored are the wooden spoons from my Mother: she had asked my Dad to make them shorter, but rather than cut them off, he carved faces on the end. Now, they are spread amongst the family. All are well-loved, the bowls of the spoons of irregular shape from use, but bring happy memories.

  3. Cheryl says:

    I couldn’t think of anything, but then I went downstairs to make breakfast for my kids and there it was: my cast-iron griddle/grill. It’s an ugly black slab that sits atop 2 burners and I use it daily — for pancakes/French toast like I did this morning, or to grill shrimp or meat, like I did last night. Though I can’t really call it sentimental, I’d replace it in a heartbeat if something ever happened to it.

  4. My mezzaluna! Sure I could chop fresh herbs with a chef’s knife, but the curved blade takes me back to my time in Italy. I also have an olive dish and tiny hand painted bowls from Portugal I can’t imagine doing without.

  5. KennQ. says:

    I just got married almost ten years ago. Most of our kitchen utensils are just given to us. The one that stood out was the bowl that was bought 56 years ago and passed by generations. Now, the bowl has its 4th generation and as the time goes by, my daughter will have it soon.

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