The good book

Got the book* in the post yesterday and am nearly halfway through a cover-to-cover readthrough. Granted, the book contains some content I already read over the past few days, so I skimmed or skipped those bits, but I’m now well into the meaty bits as I approach the recipe section proper.

So far I like it quite a bit. One of the things that sold me on Whole30 in the first place was their sense of humour, and that has made it into the book as well. The section on cooking – what they term Ingredient Recipes – is really well thought-out and I’m looking forward to trying out their purported ‘no-fail’ methods.

There’s only one nitpick – one tiny grit that is stuck in my craw at this moment – and it has to do with equipment. Before they do a rundown of essentials and nice-to-haves in the land of kitchen gear, they acknowledge that they may be speaking to folks whose kitchens are not just poorly equipped, but may be almost entirely unequipped. Shortly thereafter, one is asked to flip ahead to read through a recipe that involves using a slotted spoon.

Wait, is ‘slotted spoon’ on the list of essential kitchen gear? Spoiler alert: nope.

Don’t get me wrong here, I’m not trying to be snarky because I’ve never owned – and have yet to acquire – a slotted spoon (it’s on the list). It’s only that they just talked about a host of people who’ve lived their adult lives off of take-aways and delivery pizza, who may be lucky to have a full place setting of flatware in their kitchens, let alone a slotted-fricken-spoon. They might have at least popped a short paragraph in their essentials section that contained a list of utensils that anyone would consider a basic culinary repertoire.

So for the hopelessly unenlightened, or the annoyingly thorough (such as myself), here is a suggested list:

  • wooden spoon and/or paddle for stirring
  • heat-proof plastic flipper (some folks calls it a spatula, but those people are wrong)
  • silicone spatula
  • mid-sized balloon whisk
  • silicone-tipped metal tongs (think of them as fingers for picking up hot things)
  • ladle
  • slotted mother-hugging spoon

This list may seem obvious to the point of, ‘Well, duh!’, but keep in mind that for already kitchen-minded folks, the entire essentials list is just that. Of course I have baking sheets in my kitchen; what am I, some sort of n00b? And I know that a slotted spoon isn’t a necessity, because I’ve cooked for 15 years or so without one. Still, I feel that if you’re going to mention a tool by name in a recipe in a professionally published book, and you did not also list that tool as a kitchen essential, you might just be missing a trick.

*Note: the link I chose to use not only goes to a Canadian bookseller, but to an affiliate page for the Toronto Public Library. I don’t get any benefit from this, but the library does. If your local library has an affiliate program with a bookseller, I highly recommend sourcing your books this way. You were going to buy the book anyway, but this way you get to give back the very tiniest amount possible. Seems legit.