As a passionate cook, I know how important it is to have the right tools in the kitchen. If you are a fan of Asian cuisine, having the correct cookware and utensils is essential in creating those authentic flavours that you love. From woks and bamboo steamers to sushi making kits and dumpling presses, each piece of cookware serves a specific purpose in Asian cooking, making it a must-have in any kitchen.
Asian cookware is not only practical in its use but also aesthetically pleasing, adding an extra touch of style to your kitchen. Therefore, it’s no surprise that Asian cookware and utensils have gained popularity among foodies worldwide.
In this article, I’ll delve into the must-have Asian cookware and tools you need in your kitchen to create authentic and delicious Asian dishes.
- Asian cookware and utensils are essential for creating authentic Asian flavours in your cooking.
- Each piece of cookware serves a specific purpose, making them a must-have in any kitchen.
- Asian cookware adds both practicality and style to your kitchen, making them a popular choice among foodies.
Woks and Stir Fry Pans – The Heart of Asian Cooking
As someone who has grown up with the flavours of Asian cuisine, I can confidently say that woks and stir fry pans are the backbone of this vibrant and diverse culinary tradition. From spicy stir-fry noodles to savoury fried rice, woks and stir fry pans allow for the quick, high-heat cooking techniques that bring out the best in ingredients and create those distinctive flavours we all love.
When it comes to choosing a wok or stir fry pan, there are a few things to consider. Firstly, the material – traditional woks are made from carbon steel, which is lightweight, durable, and has excellent heat distribution properties. Non-stick coated woks are also available, which can make cleaning easier, but they may not be as durable as carbon steel. Stainless steel is another option, but it doesn’t distribute heat as evenly as carbon steel, which can result in uneven cooking.
The shape of the wok is also important – a round bottom wok is traditional, but it requires a special wok ring to stabilize it on a gas stove. Flat bottom woks are more versatile and can be used on any type of stove.
When it comes to stir fry pans, the same considerations apply in terms of material and shape. Look for a pan with high sides to prevent food from spilling over, and a flat base for even heat distribution.
My top recommendation for a traditional carbon steel wok is the Joyce Chen Pro Chef Flat Bottom Wok, which has a flat base for use on all stove types and a 14-inch diameter for plenty of cooking space. For a non-stick option, the T-fal Specialty Nonstick Jumbo Wok is a great choice, with a durable non-stick coating and a heat-resistant handle for easy handling.
For stir fry pans, the Calphalon Tri-Ply Stainless Steel Stir Fry Pan is a high-quality option with excellent heat distribution, while the T-fal Ultimate Hard Anodized Nonstick Stir Fry Pan is a durable and affordable non-stick choice.
Investing in a good quality wok or stir fry pan can take your Asian cooking to the next level, allowing you to create delicious, authentic dishes with ease.
Bamboo Steamers – Traditional Asian Steaming
When it comes to authentic Asian cooking, bamboo steamers are a must-have in your kitchen. These steamers are traditionally used to cook dumplings, buns, and vegetables, but they can be used for a variety of other dishes as well.
The benefits of using bamboo steamers go beyond their cultural significance. The steamers are made of natural bamboo material, which allows for gentle and even steaming of food. This method of cooking retains nutrients and enhances flavours, resulting in healthier and more delicious meals.
Using bamboo steamers is easy and straightforward. Simply place the food in the steamer baskets, stack them on top of each other, and place the stack over a pot of boiling water. The steam will cook the food in a matter of minutes.
It is important to note that bamboo steamers require some special care to ensure their longevity. They should be rinsed and dried after each use, and occasionally wiped with a damp cloth to remove any residue. Additionally, the steamers should not be immersed in water or placed in the dishwasher.
If you are in the market for bamboo steamers, there are several high-quality options available. Look for steamers with tight-fitting lids, sturdy construction, and a range of basket sizes to accommodate different foods. One great option is the Stack N’ Steam bamboo steamer set, which includes two baskets and a lid that doubles as a plate.
|Retains nutrients and enhances flavours||Requires special care to ensure longevity|
|Easy to use and straightforward||Cannot be immersed in water or placed in the dishwasher|
|Several high-quality options available|
Investing in a bamboo steamer is a great way to elevate your Asian cooking game and explore new culinary possibilities. Experiment with different foods and flavour combinations and enjoy the health benefits of steaming with this traditional Asian cookware.
Rice Cookers – Perfectly Cooked Asian Rice
When it comes to Asian cuisine, rice is an essential component in many dishes. A rice cooker is an indispensable tool for achieving perfectly cooked rice every time. With a rice cooker, you can easily measure and cook rice without having to constantly monitor the stove.
There are several types of rice cookers to choose from, including conventional, fuzzy logic, and induction. Conventional rice cookers use simple on/off controls, while fuzzy logic rice cookers have advanced features that allow for temperature, humidity, and cooking time adjustments. Induction rice cookers use electromagnetic technology for precise temperature control and faster cooking times.
When selecting a rice cooker, look for features such as non-stick inner pots, multiple cooking settings (such as for brown or mixed rice), and keep warm functions. Some models even have the ability to steam vegetables or cook soups and stews.
|Zojirushi NS-TSC10||Fuzzy logic technology, multiple cooking settings, keep warm function, steaming basket, retractable cord||£150|
|Aroma Housewares ARC-150SB||Conventional cooker, multiple cooking settings, keep warm function, steaming tray, non-stick inner pot||£40|
|Cuckoo CRP-P0609S||Induction heating, multiple cooking settings, keep warm function, voice navigation, detachable inner lid||£250|
Investing in a high-quality rice cooker will not only save you time and effort in the kitchen, but it will also ensure that your Asian rice dishes are perfectly cooked every time.
Sushi Making Kits – Create Your Own Sushi Feast
If you love sushi as much as I do, then you know that making it at home can be a challenge without the right tools. That’s where sushi making kits come in handy. These kits provide all the essential tools needed to create restaurant-quality sushi right in your own kitchen.
Each sushi making kit typically includes a sushi mat, rice paddle, and chopsticks. The sushi mat is used for rolling the sushi and the rice paddle is used for spreading the rice evenly on the nori (seaweed sheets). With the included chopsticks, you can perfect your sushi-making skills while feeling like a pro.
For those who are new to sushi making, a kit can be a great way to get started. It provides everything you need in one package, so you won’t have to worry about buying each individual tool separately. Plus, the instructions that typically come with the kit can help guide you through the process.
When choosing a sushi making kit, look for one that is made of high-quality materials and has a good reputation. Some popular options include the SushiQuik Super Easy Sushi Making Kit and the BambooMN Deluxe Sushi Making Kit.
With a sushi making kit, you can impress your friends and family by serving up your own homemade sushi feast. It’s an enjoyable and rewarding experience that will save you money in the long run, as you won’t have to spend a fortune at sushi restaurants. Plus, you can customize your sushi with your favourite ingredients, making it a personalized and unique dish.
Asian Cooking Tools – Must-Have Accessories
Asian cooking requires a particular set of tools and kitchen accessories to achieve the desired authentic flavours. These tools not only enhance the cooking experience but also elevate the presentation of dishes. Here are some essential Asian cooking tools you need to have in your kitchen:
A cleaver is a versatile tool that is a must-have in an Asian kitchen. It is used for chopping, slicing, and dicing meat, poultry, and vegetables. The blade of a cleaver is usually thicker and heavier than a regular knife, making it suitable for heavy-duty work. Cleavers come in different sizes and are made from various materials such as carbon steel, stainless steel, and ceramic. For the best results, choose a cleaver that feels comfortable in your hand and is easy to control.
Mortar and Pestle
A mortar and pestle is an indispensable tool used for grinding and crushing spices, herbs, and pastes. It is commonly used in Asian cuisines such as Thai and Indian. The material of the mortar and pestle can range from stone, marble, or granite to wood or bamboo. Stone or marble mortars and pestles are more durable and long-lasting, but wooden or bamboo ones are lighter and easier to use. For a traditional touch, opt for a stone or marble mortar and pestle.
A mandoline is a kitchen tool used for slicing vegetables and fruits with precision. It is an essential tool for making dishes such as stir-fries, salads, and sushi. Mandolines come with adjustable blades to achieve different thicknesses of slices. The material of the mandoline can range from stainless steel to plastic. Stainless steel mandolines are more durable and long-lasting, but plastic ones are lighter and easier to use. When using a mandoline, it is essential to use the safety guard to prevent any accidents.
Other Kitchen Accessories
In addition to the tools mentioned above, other kitchen accessories such as bamboo cutting boards, bamboo steamers, and spider skimmers are also essential for Asian cooking. Bamboo cutting boards are gentle on knives and offer a natural antibacterial surface, while bamboo steamers are used for steaming food such as dumplings and vegetables. Spider skimmers are used for deep-frying and retrieving food from boiling water. These accessories are convenient to use and are available in various sizes and materials.
Having the right Asian cooking tools and kitchen accessories can take your home cooking to the next level. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced home cook, these tools are essential for creating authentic Asian flavours. Invest in high-quality tools and accessories to achieve the best results in your cooking.
Noodle Makers – Fresh Homemade Noodles
If you’re a fan of Asian cuisine, you know that noodles are a staple in many dishes. But have you ever tried making your own fresh homemade noodles? With a noodle maker, you can create authentic, flavourful noodles right in your own kitchen.
Noodle makers come in a variety of types, but the most common are manual and electric. Manual machines are affordable and easy to use, but they require some effort to turn the handle and roll out the dough. Electric noodle makers, on the other hand, are more expensive but make noodle-making effortless and quicker.
When choosing a noodle maker, consider the types of noodles you want to make – thin or thick, udon or soba – and the size of the machine. Some noodle makers come with attachments for different types of noodles, while others require separate purchases for specific noodles.
Investing in a noodle maker is a game-changer for any home cook who wants to take their Asian cuisine to the next level. With fresh homemade noodles, you can make dishes like ramen, pad Thai, and chow mein that are bursting with authentic flavours. So, why not give it a try?
Dumpling Presses – Perfectly Shaped Dumplings
If you’re a fan of Asian cuisine, then you know that dumplings are one of the most beloved dishes. But have you ever struggled with shaping the perfect dumpling? That’s where dumpling presses come in handy.
Dumpling presses are small tools that help you create perfectly shaped dumplings with ease. They typically come in plastic or metal, with various sizes and shapes for different types of dumplings.
Using a dumpling press is simple. Start by placing a small amount of filling in the center of a dumpling wrapper. Then, fold the wrapper in half around the filling and place it on the open press. Gently press down the top of the press to create a sealed dumpling.
Not only do dumpling presses make the process of making dumplings quicker and more efficient, but they also ensure that your dumplings are uniform in size and shape. This is especially important if you’re making a large batch of dumplings for a family gathering or party.
Top-rated Dumpling Presses
|Norpro Stainless Steel Dumpling Press||Stainless steel||4 inches|
|Kuchenprofi Ravioli/Pierogi/Dumpling Press||Plastic||4 inches|
|Helen’s Asian Kitchen Dumpling Press||Plastic||2.5 inches|
For a durable option that is dishwasher safe, the Norpro Stainless Steel Dumpling Press is a great choice. If you prefer a plastic option, the Kuchenprofi Ravioli/Pierogi/Dumpling Press is both affordable and easy to use. And if you’re making smaller sized dumplings, Helen’s Asian Kitchen Dumpling Press is perfect for you.
Having the right Asian cookware is essential for creating authentic flavours at home. From woks and stir fry pans to rice cookers, bamboo steamers, and sushi making kits, the right tools can elevate your Asian culinary experience to new heights.
Don’t forget about the must-have accessories such as cleavers, mortar and pestle, mandolines, and noodle makers that can help you achieve restaurant-quality dishes in the comfort of your home.
Investing in high-quality Asian cooking tools and utensils will not only improve the taste and texture of your dishes but also make the cooking process more enjoyable and efficient.
Upgrade Your Cooking Game Today
Explore the wide range of Asian cookware available in the market and choose the ones that best suit your cooking needs and preferences. With the right tools, you can create delicious and authentic Asian cuisine that will impress your family and friends. Happy cooking!
Q: Why is it important to have the right Asian cookware for authentic flavours at home?
A: Having the right Asian cookware ensures that you can recreate the authentic flavours and textures of Asian cuisine in your own kitchen. The right cookware allows you to properly cook and prepare dishes, enhancing the taste and overall dining experience.
Q: What are the essential cookware for stir fry dishes?
A: Woks and stir fry pans are the heart of Asian cooking. They are designed for high-heat cooking and provide a large cooking surface area, allowing you to quickly and evenly stir fry ingredients. Investing in a good quality wok or stir fry pan will greatly enhance your stir fry dishes.
Q: How do I choose a wok or stir fry pan?
A: When choosing a wok or stir fry pan, consider the material, size, and handle. Carbon steel woks are preferred for their heat retention and ability to develop a natural non-stick patina. Non-stick or stainless steel stir fry pans are alternatives for those who prefer easier maintenance. Ensure the wok or pan is of an appropriate size for your cooking needs and has a comfortable handle for easy maneuvering.
Q: What are the benefits of using bamboo steamers?
A: Bamboo steamers are ideal for steaming dumplings, buns, and vegetables in Asian cuisine. They allow for gentle and even heat distribution, preserving the natural flavors and nutrients of the food. Additionally, bamboo steamers are eco-friendly, durable, and easy to use and clean.
Q: How do I use and care for bamboo steamers?
A: To use a bamboo steamer, place it over a pot or wok filled with boiling water and steam the food until cooked. It is important to line the bamboo steamer with parchment or cabbage leaves to prevent sticking. After each use, rinse the bamboo steamer with hot water and allow it to air dry. Avoid using soap or abrasive cleaners to maintain the integrity of the bamboo.
Q: What types of rice cookers are available?
A: There are various types of rice cookers, including basic models with simple one-touch operation, advanced models with multiple cooking functions, and traditional Japanese-style rice cookers. Each type offers different features such as keep warm functions, programmable timers, and different rice cooking settings.
Q: What are some recommended rice cookers for Asian rice dishes?
A: Some top-rated rice cookers for Asian rice dishes include the Zojirushi NS-ZCC10 Neuro Fuzzy Rice Cooker, the Tiger JNP-S10U-HU Rice Cooker, and the Aroma Housewares ARC-914SBD Digital Rice Cooker. These rice cookers are known for their consistent and perfectly cooked rice results.
Q: What tools are included in sushi making kits?
A: Sushi making kits typically include a bamboo sushi mat, rice paddle, and sushi knife. Some kits may also include nori seaweed sheets, pickled ginger, wasabi, and soy sauce. These kits provide all the essential tools needed to create sushi rolls and nigiri at home.
Q: What tips can you provide for beginners using sushi making kits?
A: For beginners, it is important to start with simple sushi recipes and gradually experiment with different ingredients and techniques. Following step-by-step tutorials and watching video demonstrations can help in understanding the sushi-making process. It is also essential to practice patience and precision when rolling sushi to achieve perfect results.
Q: What are some must-have Asian cooking tools and kitchen accessories?
A: Asian cooking tools and kitchen accessories that are considered must-haves include a cleaver for precise cutting and chopping, a mortar and pestle for grinding spices and making pastes, and a mandoline for creating uniform slices. These tools are essential for various Asian cooking techniques and can greatly enhance your cooking experience.
Q: What are some recommended Asian cooking tools?
A: For high-quality Asian cooking tools, consider brands like Shun, Global, and Joyce Chen. These brands offer a wide range of kitchen tools specifically designed for Asian cuisine and are known for their excellent craftsmanship and durability.
Q: What are the advantages of having a noodle maker?
A: A noodle maker allows you to create fresh homemade noodles, which are a staple in many Asian dishes. Making your own noodles gives you control over the ingredients and allows you to customize the thickness and shape of the noodles. Fresh homemade noodles have a superior taste and texture compared to store-bought options.
Q: What types of noodle makers are available?
A: There are manual and electric noodle makers available. Manual noodle makers require hand-cranking to roll and cut the dough, while electric noodle makers automate the process. Both types offer different features and capacities, so choose one that best suits your needs and preferences.
Q: What are some recommended noodle makers for homemade noodles?
A: Some top-rated noodle makers for homemade noodles include the Philips Pasta Maker, the Marcato Atlas Pasta Machine, and the Hamilton Beach Electric Pasta and Noodle Maker. These noodle makers offer ease of use, versatility, and consistent results.
Q: What are the benefits of using a dumpling press?
A: Using a dumpling press makes it easier to create perfectly shaped dumplings with consistent filling-to-wrapper ratios. It saves time and effort compared to shaping dumplings by hand, especially for beginners. Dumpling presses also ensure that the dumplings seal properly, preventing filling leakage during cooking.
Q: What types of dumpling presses are available?
A: There are various types of dumpling presses, including plastic, stainless steel, and wooden presses. Plastic presses are affordable and easy to use, stainless steel presses are durable and hygienic, while wooden presses offer a traditional and rustic touch. Choose a type that suits your preferences and needs.
Q: What are some recommended dumpling presses?
A: Some recommended dumpling presses include the Norpro Stainless Steel Dumpling Press, the Helen’s Asian Kitchen Dumpling Press, and the Kitchen Innovations Perfect Zazzle Dumpling Maker. These presses are known for their sturdy construction and ease of use in creating perfectly shaped dumplings.