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Old 04-11-2006, 04:44 PM   #41
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Once, in college, I stayed with a friend of a friend in Hawaii. Part of the deal was that I would cook for one of her parties. It turns out, I had to finely chop 8+ onions with a serated steak knife because that was the only knife she had in the house (she usually just uses scissors).
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Old 04-23-2006, 08:58 PM   #42
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when I go to other peoples kitchens as a Chef For Hire I always take my own knives, herbs, garlic (they usually have dried garlic bulbs), and both red and white onions, plus any specialty pots or pans that I think I will need. I only use cast iron or SS, and my cutting boards. sometimes I have a hard time finding a place to put the boards but all works out.
The only time I cut myself was with a dull knife when it slipped off an onion. Since then I have always carried my own.
I HATE those serrated knives I call kitchen saws.
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Old 05-15-2006, 04:28 PM   #43
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I have to laugh at myself ... knowing what I know, writing what I did in this thread, I headed to Florida without my knives! Ironically, after one of my relatives left my mother's house, she brought out a few decent knives. Huh? What was that all about? Turns out this relative sells an expensive brand of knife that Mom can't afford to buy from him. She found them at a yard sale, and didn't want to hurt his feelings!! The other freind I cooked for also didn't really have a good knife. When will I learn to travel with a knife? When it is frigid out in Illinois, and you're packing for the heat of Florida, sick, elderly dogs, etc, going to the kitchen and packing a couple of Wustofs is the last thing on my mind!!
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Old 05-15-2006, 05:08 PM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Claire
I often find myself cooking in others' kitchens, even if it is just finishing up my contribution to a potluck. My ... well, I won't even call it a pet peeve .... more just a case of "I wonder." How do people cook without a decent knife? What do you find lacking in friends' and relatives' kitchens that you find essential in your own?
Honestly, I'm very territorial about my kitchen. I prefer to do all the cooking, unless someone wants to help and knows what they're doing. Even then, it's "Where do you keep your - (this or that)." Don't mind if friends help themselves to what ever food they want though. In turn, I don't feel comfortable cooking in someone else's kitchen. I'll even 'ask' for a drink of water - never help myself. (I even ask "May I use your restroom?") Perhaps that's the way I was raised. If someone asks me to help, I enjoy helping - but I have to ask "Where's your (this and that)." Re decent knives etc., I just accept whatever the person has or doesn't have. What's comfortable/handy for me, may not be so for someone else. Now I'll get off my soapbox

Back to cooking gadgets - I like my tomato slicer (also slices mushrooms) - perfect uniform slices every time. An ex bf (who was as meticulous as they come), was 'helping' me in the kitchen, used it, & complained he didn't like it. Go figure. Oh yeah, he also used my good evoo to deep fry chicken. PLEASE don't help me! LOL
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Old 05-15-2006, 06:35 PM   #45
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I'm the opposite. I'm a firm believer that the world would be a boring place if everyone was just like me, though. When visiting folk who are territorial about the kitchen I try to bring flowers or some other hostess gift so I don't feel like a freeloader. Do you have any ideas of a host/ess gift to bring for people who don't want me to help? My family and most of my freinds want me to cook when I visit, and I'm happy to do so. Having so many military years behind me, I'm used to dealing with whatever the kitchen has (I've cooked in more kitchen than I could possibly count), but the knife thing is something I should learn to bring along. I've learned that different places I've lived have different traditions, and around here even if it isn't potluck, people will bring something. So now I plan for that and have the kitchen ready for a multitude of cooks heating and chopping. It is fun. I had a Columbian woman come for dinner a few times. The first time I did it all, and realized she was uncomfortable with nothing to do with her hands. The next couple of times I made sure to have a job for her to help me with, and she was much more comfortable. I have a sis who hates to cook, but has no problem with cleaning up (or,for that matter, ironing whatever clothes we may need for family ceremonies). Flexibility is the name of the game in my house.
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Old 05-15-2006, 07:18 PM   #46
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Claire wanted to share some more thoughts, but the whole post was lost -- think the site may have gone amuck. Let's keep the friendly discussion going.
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Old 05-15-2006, 08:37 PM   #47
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Another here who's very territorial about the kitchen.

I can not stand anyone to use my kitchen, and here people don't think twice about asking to use it. Once someone invited me to dinner and showed up at my front door with groceries, I was getting ready to go to their house.
I let a couple of different people use it, but they made a mess and it was more trouble than it was worth.

Yes, my house has a large kitchen, but if I invite people over, I will do all the cooking, they can bring something, I don't care.
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Old 05-15-2006, 08:44 PM   #48
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Example: If a friend invites me to spend the weekend/over night, I wouldn't bring my 300 thread count Egyptian cotton sheets - cause I don't like their's Besides, if you walk around with cutlery, you'll never get through the metal detector. LOL
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Old 05-15-2006, 11:11 PM   #49
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Gee, I didn't realize I'd gotten quite so mouthy (keyboard-y?). I just put my dog down and guess I'm looking for company!
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Old 05-15-2006, 11:16 PM   #50
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P.S., I'd never bring something to someone's house because I needed something better than they had. And as you can see, I don't even bring my knives!! My freinds simply want me to cook for them. BTW, I bring tons of food when I travel. We live in a great cheese part of the country, and hit places in three states to buy the very best aged and exotic cheese made in the country. Ditto sausages and nut brittles.
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