The holidays are a hectic time of year. If you’re responsible for preparing the holiday meal, knowing you have reliable kitchen equipment is a good way to reduce some of the stress. Here’s what you need to pull off one of the most important meals of the year.
Don’t mangle the roast you spent so much time (and money!) on. The key to perfect slices is a high-quality slicing knife, with its long, straight blade that makes for smooth, even slicing, and a rounded tip that doesn’t snag the meat. We sliced 150 pounds of turkey breast and roast beef with seven different slicing knives and the best one was the Victorinox 12" Fibrox Pro Granton Edge Slicing/Carving Knife. This knife is comfortable land sharp, with a long, tall blade that testers described as “just flexible enough so you feel like it’s doing what you tell it to.”
Try to carve a juicy roast on a flat cutting board and you’ll see how important a proper carving board is. With its trench around the perimeter of the board, a carving board is designed to catch juices and keep your countertop clean. We tested liquid capacity, cutting surface, and ease of use of 10 carving boards and the best one was the J.K. Adams Maple Reversible Carving Board, a midweight, moderately sized board that features a trench on both sides that could easily accommodate ½ cup of liquid.
A digital scale is a game changer in the kitchen. The most reliable way to measure dry ingredients for baking recipes from breads to cookies is by weight (as opposed to volume). If you don’t have a scale and are looking to buy one, or if you have one and want to upgrade, the best scale on the market is the OXO Good Grips 11 lb Food Scale with Pull Out Display. It’s has a sturdy construction, responsive buttons, and a removable platform for easy cleaning. The screen can be pulled out nearly 4 inches when weighing oversize items, and the scale uses decimals rather than fractions, so it’s precise and easy to read.
Nothing can ruin a holiday meal quite like a burnt hand. We tested eight oven mitts to find one that was functional, offering protection from burns (obviously), but also letting the cook easily maneuver everything from a baking sheet to a heavy casserole dish to the handle of a hot skillet. The best one was the San Jamar Cool Touch Flame Oven Mitt, whose heat resistance and all-around dependability impressed testers. (If you don’t want to pay $40 for an oven mitt, we also highly recommend the OrkaPlus Silicone Oven Mitt with Cotton Lining, which costs around $15.)
The HIC Porcelain Lasagna Baking Dish is lightweight, with large, easy-to-grip handles and straight sides. And best of all, it’s broiler safe, so we turn to it whenever we have to turn up the heat on holiday sides like broiled asparagus and potato casseroles. It’s also great looking, so it will fit right in with your holiday tablescape.
If you buy something through this post, the station may get a share of the sale.