When we decided to renovate our kitchen, we felt like it was the perfect time to revamp our old, worn, outdated cookware. For the past 16 years of our marriage, we’ve been cooking with old cookware our parents passed down to us, plus maybe 2 pieces that we registered for years ago. I felt like putting our old gross cookware up on our open shelving would be like putting on your rattiest pair of sweatpants after just getting the best haircut of your life…. it would just be wrong! If you are like me, purchasing new cookware is not an easy feat. In today’s world, there are SO many options and finishes available, and when it comes to buying items like cookware, I do my research. I want to know that what I am investing in is going to be something that will last me a lifetime. In addition to supporting a company that offers quality products, as I mentioned here, I want to support companies that care about the community, give back, and have upstanding ethics. Cuisinart is a company that has been around for a long time, and with reason. They tick the boxes when it comes to quality and caring. When it came time to select new cookware for our new kitchen, I reached out to Cuisinart because after doing my research, I knew I wanted theirs to be the cookware we used for the rest of our lives. (Thank you so much to Cuisinart for providing us with the knives and cookware in this post. I was not otherwise compensated and all opinions are my own.)
As you can see, our kitchen renovation is slowly getting there, but we are finally ready to actually cook (Hallelujah!) and we are looking forward to breaking in our new knives and cookware! I am going to share each item that we received with you as well as why I selected these products. As I mentioned, I know that buying cookware requires research, and I’ve done a lot of that for you. Cuisinart is a company that has been around for some time, and their revolutionary food processor was introduced just 5 years before I was introduced to the world! As a matter of fact, Chris and I received a Cuisinart food processor as a wedding gift, and it’s still going strong after much use these 16 years later. Of course, the 2003 design is not as high-tech as the 2019 design, but it works just as well as it did on day one. We use it every summer to whip up one of our favorites, pesto. In fact, we grilled pesto salmon just the other night.
While our food processor has stayed the same over these years, we have changed. We’ve grown and evolved and we’ve truly come to appreciate what it means to cook at home and “savor the good life.” We both have always enjoyed eating (I mean, who doesn’t!) but something you may not know is that during our marriage Chris transitioned from retail management to fast casual restaurant management. He’s a market operator for a Mediterranean chain, and before that he was with a Mexican chain. Throughout these experiences, he’s had to train in the kitchen and learn the required skills in food prep and cooking at these restaurants. Because of that, he’s taken his skills home, and now loves to cook even more. However, he was always growing frustrated because our cookware, and especially our knife set, were not at all up to his standards. We knew it was time to bring excellent quality durable knives into our life. We selected the Normandy 19 Piece Cutlery Block Set.
This set features every knife we could ever need, a full set of 8 steak knives, shears, a sharpener, and more. The feature that absolutely sold us on these, aside from how dang gorgeous they are… I mean just look at them… is the handles. The handles are not separate from the metal of the knife which means they will never break or crumble (as happened to our last set.) These knives are going to last us until the day we die, and even then will be passed on to our kids who will appreciate them if they ever learn to cook. 😉
In addition to the amazing handles, a feature I love about this block is that each slot goes straight through to the bottom. I’ve heard so much about how those little spaces can collect bacteria or mold, and with this slot going all the way through, it’s safer and much easier to keep clean.
Chris and I are going to be breaking in these bad boys this weekend and will have an awesome fall recipe to share with you, too, so stay tuned for that.
We are also going to be breaking in the fabulous new cookware set that we received. I was drawn to it for the black and white mix, but also for the versatility and the fact that it requires less butter and oil for cooking. The particular set we got has since been discontinued, but this 11 Piece Cuisinart Nonstick Cookware set is similar. Actually this one has some benefits that ours doesn’t, such as being freezer safe. How cool is that? No more cooking in tin foil pans or cooking in a pan, and cutting into pieces to stick in Tupperware to freeze… you can freeze it right in the pan!
For me, the best part of the set we received is the fact that it’s oven safe. You may recall from my birthday post that I’ve decided to go pescatarian in my diet. I was not a beef eater, but this change has caused me to eliminate chicken from my diet which means I am going to probably be eating a lot more eggs. (We have got to build a chicken coop again STAT!) Once of my favorite go-to dishes to make is a frittata. There are so many savory combinations that can be created, and it’s generally a dish I can get Chris to eat as well.
If you’ve made one before, you know that a frittata starts on the cooktop, and then finishes in the oven, so an oven safe pan is a MUST. In the past, we’ve used a super heavy cast iron pan to make ours and it’s always a struggle to lift it from the range into the oven. I’m stoked that now I have a much lighter pan with a handle on each side that I can use to frittata my heart out! Also, yes, frittata can be a verb. 😉
The last couple of pieces I want to share with you I selected for my fall and winter cooking primarily. Each fall, I load up on apples, and spend a good couple of days making homemade applesauce. A good stock pot is imperative to this process. I chop up all of my apples and place them in a pot, adding some water to prevent scalding, and then simmer until the apples are all cooked and then continue with my process. A large pot helps me create about 6-quart jars at a time. Emmy, Wilder, and I all loooove homemade applesauce, and I love to use it as a healthy baking substitute. This large Cuisinart 16 Quart Stockpot is going to come in handy when I make my fall applesauce soon! (It’s the larger one on the right). In addition to applesauce, I plan to start canning more peaches since we are in the land of plentiful peaches here in the South. I also love to make and can homemade salsa so this will be the perfect piece to use when we have a garden again and I can recreate my homemade peach salsa. I learned how to can these fruits only in the last few years, so I am excited to use the stockpot to add even more fruits, veggies, and sauces to my repertoire.
Secondly, a fall and winter favorite around here is SOUP! Soup & salad is pretty much my favorite meal all winter long. I love to create large batches of soup so that I have leftovers I can easily reheat, especially when I’m trying to make lunch with a 1 year old at my feet. This Cuisinart 12 Quart Stock Pot is going to be simmering away on our stove top all fall and winter long as I whip up my favorites like butternut squash soup. We also love a good shrimp coconut curry stew!
I am so thrilled that our kitchen is finally at a place where it’s usable, even if it isn’t yet much to look at… yet! Fall is my absolute favorite time of year to cook due to the flavors of the season as well as the coziness of the darker evenings. I’m thrilled we are ready to take advantage of the bounty that this season has to offer. We are looking forward to creating many memories in this space with our new cookware from Cuisinart. Many thanks to the folks at Cuisinart for making my cooking dreams come true and providing me with such amazing pieces.