Equipment Notes

Mortar and Pestle

Mortar and Pestles are a lot like Kurt Russell characters: the bigger and rougher, the better. You want a mortar and pestle with super rough ridges, made out of granite. These are the most versatile, as opposed to the marble and wood variety, which in my opinion do little less than look good in your kitchen. A big granite one will be able to grind up hard spices, wet ingredients like garlic, or large dry ingredients, like dried fish. A large mortar and pestle can be made to pound multiple ingredients into a paste. Spend the money, (in my case $40 at Winners) and get one that will last forever and cover any job where grinding and mooshing are involved.

Pressure Cooker

The pressure cooker I have is the Fagor America Duo 10-Quart Pressure Cooker/Canner. I did a bit of research online and this is one that was recommended by America's Test Kitchen. I cooks evenly when used as a regular soup pot and is easy to use. It's also easy to see if it's under pressure from across the room. ATK actually recommended a size down, but this one fits canning jars, and I do a bit of canning every summer. So far, I've found an excuse to pull this thing out once a week for stocks and stews. I love it. 

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