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Home tools Buyer's Guides from tech enthusiast who loves technology and clever solutions for better living.
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Top Of The Best Shallow Serving Bowls Reviewed In 2018Last Updated February 1, 2018
№1 – KooK 10 Inch Hammered Style Wave Serving Bowl – Stainless Steel
№2 – Party Bargains Hard Plastic Angled Large Serving Bowls, Color: Clear, Value Pack of 5
№3 – DOWAN 10 Inch/2 Quart Porcelain Pasta/Salad Serving Bowls- 2 Packs, Shallow, White
Salad Plates – Used for serving salad in restaurants or salad buffets. Often made with a pebbled texture.
Service Plates – Used for the main entree. Service plates are often brought to the table by a member of the wait staff.
Saucers – Usually paired with a teacup or mug, saucers keep hot liquids off of the table and are a classier dinnerware piece.
Pasta bowls – More often than not, this type of bowl tends to be shallow, almost resembling a plate.
Platters – Used to serve larger entrees or even appetizers. Great for presenting foods like roasts, whole fish, and intact poultry.
Soup bowls – Deeper than pasta bowls, soup bowls are made with or without handles. Handled soup bowls keep the hands from burning and are great for use with French Onion soup.
Mugs – Also considered drinkware. Mugs usually match the dinnerware being used and are designed for holding hot beverages like tea, coffee, or hot cocoa.
Dessert dish / cup – Dessert dishes are used to present sweet foods like ice cream, fruits, or even pudding. This piece is often found in cafeteria or restaurant settings.
Porcelain is an attractive choice and is considered a classic where dinnerware is concerned. Porcelain is made by firing (or heating) materials like clay and can be tempered for extra durability. While porcelain is a great choice for sit down restaurants, cafes, and even catering businesses it is easier to break than other dinnerware materials. dinnerware is a perfect choice for salad bars and sit down restaurants. While glass dinnerware looks great paired with any sort of meal it is much more fragile than any of the other dinnerware materials. Glass dinnerware also comes in tempered safety glass versions, like Duralex dinnerware, that are much more difficult to shatter.
Styrene Acrylonitrile (or better known as ) is a common plastic material. Dinnerware pieces made with SAN are usually best for quick serve restaurants, buffets, and cafeterias. While SAN dinnerware is chemical resistant, heat resistant, and scratch resistant it has its downsides. SAN yellows more quickly than other types of plastic dinnerware.
Polycarbonate is a plastic that features great light transmitting abilities. It can be very transparent but can also be made in several solid colors. While polycarbonate has often been used for bottles, drinkware, and food containers many shun it due to the use of BPA in the manufacturing process.
Melamine is also a plastic material. Melamine is nearly unbreakable and is a common choice in healthcare industries, hotels, and even restaurants. Because Melamine is lighter than porcelain (easier for the wait staff to carry) and can still be made into many different colors and designs, its use in the food service industry is only growing. Melamine can be stained by foods like tomato if they are left on too long.
Butter dishes are small rectangular dishes or plates with a deep lid with its own handle that will fully cover a block of butter. The butter can be hygienically stored and kept at room temperature, making it easier to spread. A butter dish can be part of a collection, matching your crockery and other tableware.
Fantastic for showing off your homemade baking triumphs, a cake stand makes the perfect tableware centrepiece to a tea party or celebration. A cake stand can be used as a base for your cake when decorating it, but generally they are used to display and serve your cake from. Some designs come with a domed lid so the cake can be stored in situ. Others are tiered (normally two or three tiers) for displaying smaller treats or sandwiches. The tiers are joined together by metal stems which can be unscrewed when the cake stand is being stored.
Cutlery can be a very personal choice; it’s got to feel right in the hand, be functional, and hopefully complement your table décor. It comes in a variety of designs, traditional parish designs, modern contemporary designs, and different metallic finishes and colours. Everyone uses knives, forks and spoons, but there are types of cutlery out there with specific designs to cater for almost any food, from fish knives, to pastry forks, and many more. Good cutlery is generally made from 18/stainless steel, which offers the best combination of durability and appearance, but can also have Silver plating, plastic handles and several other materials. Cutlery is often purchased in sets, either in wooden canteen boxes or without, but can also be bought as individual pieces to build your perfect set.
Egg cups are used for serving and eating boiled eggs. The traditional design of an egg cup is a basic cup shaped top with a flared base for stability. Modern designs include mini buckets or pails. They are used to hold the egg whilst eating, preventing you from burning fingers on the hot shell. Can be bought individually or as a tableware set.
Food warmers are metal plates with patterned perforations on the surface, underneath which tea lights are placed to provide a flame for heating up the plate. These come in different sizes allowing more dishes to be sat on the top for keeping home cooked dishes and takeaways hot whilst serving.
Ramekins are small round dishes used for baking individual dishes. Their straight sides are perfect when making souffles as it allows the mixture to rise up to create fluffy light desserts. They are also used for another classic dessert – crème brûlée. Because they have to withstand extreme heat, ramekins are normally made of stoneware of heat-proof glass. These little dishes also have several other uses – they are great for prep work in the kitchen and can also be used to serve nibbles and dips.
Sauce & Jams Pots
Condiments pots for sauces and jams are small tubby pots, generally with a lid to keep the contents fresh. Some come with a serving spoon or in the case of honey, a dipper. Many of these are very decorative or patterned to brighten up any table.
Storage jars and containers are perfect for keeping things like sugar, tea, coffee and flour dry. The different sized containers can be clear or coloured and be made from stoneware, ceramics, plastic or metal. Most containers with have a sealed air tight lid for freshness and can also be used to contain dried foods like pasta and rice.
Preheat oven to 350°, grease one mixing bowl with butter and flour to prevent the cake from sticking and put to the side. Combine cake mix, water, oil and egg whites in the other mixing bowl, following the cake box directions.
Pour cake mix into the greased and floured bowl and bake for 40-50 minutes. Insert toothpick to see if cake is done: if toothpick comes out clean, the cake is ready.
How we tested
They may not be as sexy as chef’s knives or as cutting-edge as sous vide circulators, but when it comes to basic cooking tasks, plain old mixing bowls can’t be beat. We reach for them any time we mix up pancake batter or vinaigrette, or when simply melting butter. A good bowl should be so steady, durable, and comfortable to handle that it goes almost unnoticed while you work.
For those reasons, we shop carefully when outfitting the test kitchen with mixing bowls. Our criteria start with size: At the very least, we need small, medium, and large bowls—by which we mean 1- to 1/2-quart; 1/2- to 3-quart; and 4- to 6-quart, respectively. We also find it useful to have a set in both stainless steel and glass: The lightness of metal makes it easy to use, but only glass can go in the microwave. Plastic and ceramic bowls just aren’t practical: The former’s porous surface scratches and retains oils, while the latter is so heavy that it’s a detriment.
Getting in Shape
Not all the bowls excelled at these basic functions. Some models even made easy work annoyingly difficult, thanks to a variety of design defects.
Take bowl height. A vessel’s walls should neatly contain the food but be shallow enough that users—particularly shorter folks—don’t have to strain to access the food. A side-by-side comparison of the 5-quart bowls from two different makers illustrated this point:
Standing nearly inches tall, one model forced some testers to reach farther up and over its rim than felt comfortable, while the the other, which was shorter by almost an inch, allowed easy access to the bowl’s contents.
Not only did some makers get the height right, they also got the shape of the walls right, too. In relation to their bases, these bowls’ sides curved gently, which made it comfortable for testers to not only reach into the bowls to stir but also hold the bowls aloft to pour and scrape ingredients out of them. Conversely, testers had to tilt bowls with steeper walls more dramatically if they wanted to scrape out every last bit of food, and once a bowl was nearly upside-down, it was awkward to maneuver a spatula around the inside. That’s why some shorter testers found the relatively tall and narrow bowl set by one manufacturer challenging to access, although, since those bowls were made of lightweight stainless steel, their shape was still manageable. The same couldn’t be said for one set of glass bowls, a brutally heavy fleet with L-shaped walls and sharp corners that were hard to scrape clean. Testers observed that they looked more like storage containers than mixing bowls.
We tested seven sets of mixing bowls, available in existing sets or from open stock; we singled out sizes closest to to 1/quarts, 1/to quarts, and to quarts. All bowls are dishwasher-safe and all glass bowls are microwave-safe. Prices shown were paid online.
PERFORMANCE: We used the bowls to prepare vinaigrette, muffin and pancake batters, and bread dough and also in jury-rigged double boilers. Bowls rated highly if they were sturdy and minimized splashes and spills.
EASE OF USE: We rated each set of bowls on how easy and comfortable they were to handle (including when holding them aloft and scraping the insides with a spatula), averaging the impressions of testers of varying heights, strengths, and skills.
DURABILITY: We ran all sets through the dishwasher 1times before inspecting them for clouding, chipping, and dents. We also bumped the bowls against Dutch ovens, dropped them from 1inches onto the counter, and pushed them off the counter onto the floor, noting any cracks or breaks. We docked points from models that weren’t safe for double boilers.
Who should get this
Whether you are newly engaged and registering for your first collection of dinnerware or are just tired of eating off the same plates you’ve had since college, buying a set of everyday white dishes with classic styling and proven durability makes a lot of sense. These picks are well-suited for everyday use as well as entertaining.
The difference between china, porcelain, and bone china
If you’re purchasing dinnerware for the first time or you’re due for an upgrade, it’s helpful to know the meaning behind some basic terms—including china, porcelain, and bone china—to ensure you get quality materials. British and American standards for some of these materials vary slightly, which can be confusing if you’re unfamiliar with ceramics terminology.
China, the material, takes its name from China, the birthplace of porcelain making, and is an umbrella term defined as “any glazed or unglazed vitreous ceramic dinnerware used for nontechnical purposes.” (“Vitreous” means the product is glassy and brittle with little ability to absorb water, like dinnerware, toilets, and sinks.)
Porcelain, a type of china, is primarily made with a combination of clay, feldspar, and quartz, and heated in kilns at very high temperatures. It is generally heavier and harder than bone china, with a brittle composition that can be more prone to chipping.
Bone china is made with the same ceramic materials as porcelain, but with the addition of calcified bone (up to 50 percent) and fired at a lower temperature. Calcified bone, or bone ash, is derived from animal bone and adds a creamy color and translucency to dinnerware that’s missing from porcelain. Bone ash softens the composition of china, making it less brittle and less prone to chipping compared with regular porcelain (however, the glaze on bone china is usually softer and not as strong as that on porcelain). Even though bone china is thinner and lighter and appears more delicate than porcelain, it is surprisingly durable.
In general, higher-quality bone china will have a higher percentage of bone ash. However, buyer beware: In the US, the American Society for Testing and Materials allows use of the term “bone china” for china with a bone ash content as low as 2percent. You won’t know what percentage content you’re paying for unless you contact the producer or manufacturer directly. If a manufacturer is unable to tell you the exact percentage of bone ash in its bone china, you’re probably better off avoiding that manufacturer’s bone china.
Flaws but not deal breakers
The only drawback to the Fitz and Floyd set is some faint pitting on the surface of the glaze. We detected these minor imperfections on the plates only when we examined them closely under the light, but not when we were seated in front of them at a table.
I’ve owned this set for four years and have had no breakage, although the plates have developed minor scratches on the glaze’s surface—most likely due to improper stacking. If you use any dinnerware long enough, some scratching may occur (see our Care and maintenance section).
Some of our testers with larger hands found the teacup’s handle a bit dainty. If you prefer a larger cup, we suggest opting for the four-piece set, which includes a heartier, 16-ounce mug. You can also purchase the larger mugs as open stock.
Rotating weight is felt most when ascending, so a wheel suited to climbing is usually designed with low weight in mind. Such wheels generally feature a shallow-profile rim and a low spoke count.
Another benefit of such a wheel is seen in ride quality. Typically, the deeper a rim gets in its shape, the harsher the ride — therefore climbing wheels are often more compliant.
Where a wheelset is below 1,500g and doesn’t claim to be aerodynamic, it can often be put into the climbing category. When budget is no issue, a superlight climbing wheelset should weigh between 900g and 1,300g.
Mid-section aerodynamic wheels
Aerodynamic wheels have quickly become a popular choice for creating that ‘pro look’. An aerodynamic wheel will usually feature a deeper section rim, with a rim depth of around 30mm being the typical starting point.
As aero designs have improved in recent years, there has been a big uptake in these mid-depth wheels — which unlike some deep-section models (see below) now provide a sensible balance between low weight, ride quality and improved performance against the wind.
Aerodynamic rims are often made from carbon fibre in order to keep weight low. However, budget options are likely to be made of or feature aluminium, so will be heavy.
Deep-section aerodynamic wheels
Deep racing wheels offer aerodynamic benefits, but only at higher speeds
When speed is a priority, a deep-section rim of 50mm or more cuts through the wind with less turbulence. However, the additional depth can cause problems if riding in high cross-winds and often adds weight, which is why mid-depth wheels have become a popular compromise outside of time trials and fast sprint courses.
People who race on deep aerodynamic wheels will often own a set of training wheels for use outside of racing.
While speed and low weight are a priority for racing wheels, training or ‘everyday’ wheels must be durable and able take a beating.
Because rims wear out over time with braking, alloy training wheels are often best. A custom, handbuilt wheelset — where replacement spokes and rims are relatively cheap — are a good choice (see below for more on these). Other options are budget wheels from major brands, which can be quite solid and have parts that aren’t too expensive to replace.
For this type of usage, expect a wheelset weight of 1,500–1,800g for something that is well priced. A budget wheelset is likely to be 1,900g or over.
Clincher tires explained
The term ‘clincher’ refers to standard tires that use separate inner tubes to hold the air. This is the most common wheel type on road bikes. Generally, where tire type isn’t mentioned it’s safe to assume it’s a clincher.
Tubular tires explained
Tubular tyres require plenty of work to get them set up
Tubulars, while less known, are nothing new. While they too use inner tubes, they’re stitched into a fully enclosed casing that’s then glued to the rim.
With that in mind, it’s easy to see why tubulars are best kept for racing. While they continue to be the standard in professional racing, there are very few everyday riders who can simply (or reliably) repair them when out on the road.
Tubeless tires explained
Tubeless rims are another mountain biking innovation that’s becoming more common on the road — pictured is an airtight rim design
Tubeless, a technology that’s been well-proven in mountain biking, has increasingly got some brands touting its benefits for road too.
A tubeless road tire is effectively an airtight clincher system that uses no inner tube. Tubeless rims are also backwards compatible with clincher tires.
Road wheel rim width explained
Internal rim width is becoming a very popular metric to look at in road wheels
While the 622mm bead seat diameter is an industry standard, the width of the rim is not. Recently there has been a trend towards wider rims because they offer greater tire volume and a stiffer wheel, which in turn provides a more comfortable ride, improved bike control, lower rolling resistance and potentially fewer flats. For those racing, wider rims have been shown to be more aerodynamic too.
The confusing part is that some brands quote external rim width, while others internal. Looking to internal width, anything under 14mm is considered very narrow, 19mm and over is wide and anything between is sufficient for common 23-25c tires.
This spline system hasn’t changed a great deal in the last 20 years, with the exception of 11-speed forcing a wider freehub. The latest Shimano-compatible 11-speed wheels include a washer for use with 8-, 9- or 10-speed cassettes.
If you have an 11-speed drivetrain you will need to ensure the wheels are 11-speed compatible.
It is possible to buy a cassette that will allow you to use an 11-speed drivetrain with 10-speed wheels. Such a thing exists from the likes of Token, Edco and others. Just be aware that they are generally more expensive.
Ensure that the freehub body is right for your drivetrain — number of gears and brand does matter
Beware of older Shimano 10-speed wheels from 201These featured a narrower 10-speed only freehub body with taller splines and so will not work with any other speed cassette.
SRAM cassettes use Shimano’s spline system, so are nearly all cross-compatible. The exception here is SRAM’s new 1×1 specific XD-Driver, which is its own standard.
The freehub diameter and splines of Campagnolo freehubs are very different to that of Shimano/SRAM. If you have Campagnolo gearing, ensure that the freehub body is matched.
Many aftermarket wheel brands will sell freehub bodies as a replacement part — so it’s possible to switch a Campagnolo wheel to Shimano and vice-versa (Shimano-branded wheels being a key exception here).
Freehub ratchet speeds
A feature that’s commonly overlooked in a hub is the ratchet speed or the angle of uptake. Hubs typically don’t go lower than 1points of engagement per 360-degree revolution, but hubs that offer more can provide the feeling of faster acceleration out of corners.
Rim brake road wheels
Many road bike wheels are still designed for use with rim brakes, which means the rim must offer a consistent braking surface. This is why most quality aluminium rims claim to offer a ‘machined’ surface, which generally guarantees an even braking surface at manufacturing.
Carbon rims typically don’t perform as well when braking, nor last as long as aluminium rims — especially in the wet. Keep this in mind if you’re considering a carbon wheel for everyday use.
Disc brake road wheels
Disc brake wheels feature a hub with a mount for the disc rotor. Because of the high forces these rotors exert on a wheel when braking, disc-brake wheels often feature higher spoke counts. The latest designs do away with the rim braking surface entirely and modify this traditionally reinforced area to achieve lower weight.
It’s worth noting that fitting disc brakes to a road bike isn’t as simple as swapping out the wheels, both the frame and fork must be designed to accept disc brakes too.
Disc brakes are fast becoming popular among those who don’t race. Pictured is a Shimano Centerlock spline system to hold a disc brake rotor. The other system is a six-bolt mount
When buying disc brake wheels, it’s worth being aware that there are two types of rotor mount: Center Lock and six-bolt. Center Lock is a splined system from Shimano, which with the use of an adaptor, can also use six-bolt rotors. Six-bolt hubs can only fit six-bolt rotors.
Spokes lace the hub to the rim. Generally, wheels with higher spoke counts are stronger and more durable, but this comes with a weight penalty.
Typically a spoke is made from a piece of stainless steel wire that’s been cold-forged and then had a thread added to it. Some higher-end wheels can also feature spokes made from aluminium, carbon fibre or even titanium.
When it comes to a quality wheel build, correct spoke tension is critical. Too loose and the spokes can unwind, and the constant flex will eventually lead to broken spokes or cracked rims. Too tight and the ride quality will be harsh, with an increased risk of the rim cracking at the spoke attachment point.
Factory vs. handbuilt wheels
The merits of factory vs. handbuilt wheels are often argued.
Confusingly factory wheels are, in fact, commonly built by hand. The key distinction however is that factory wheels are built to an exact specification and you buy them as an off-the-shelf item, often with proprietary spoke and rim designs.
Handbuilt wheels take a more classical approach, where the hubs, spokes, nipples and rims can be bought separately and chosen to best suit a rider’s individual needs.
Generally speaking, race wheels, whether climbing or aerodynamic, are mostly sold as factory options. The big wheel brands dominate this space due to their research, development and marketing through sponsored teams.
Handbuilt wheels are commonly kept for training, long-distance and everyday uses. However, there are of course examples where the opposites are true.
Road wheel glossary
Asymmetric rim: as the rear cassette sits on the right side of the hub, the point at which the spokes attach from the rear hub is offset to the left. With this, an asymmetric rim is designed to give a more direct path from these offset spokes to the rim, with the desired result being a sturdier and stiffer wheel
Axle: the hub spins around the axle, which is attached to the dropouts of the frame and fork. On a road bike, the axle is always hollow and most commonly designed to work with a quick release lever
Bladed spoke: a flattened spoke that’s designed to cut through the wind with less resistance. Bladed spokes are common in high-end wheels and also serve the purpose of providing an edge for a tool to hold onto, which can allow for a higher spoke tension to be achieved. Top spoke brands DT Swiss and Sapim both claim that their best bladed spokes are not only their lightest option, but also the strongest and most durable
Butted spoke: a process that sees the center of the spoke being made thinner than the outer sections. When done correctly, this is known to encourage spoke flex away from weak points, therefore leading to improved durability at a lower weight. Double butted means two different thicknesses and triple butted means three thicknesses
Cartridge bearing: in this system, bearings are contained in a cartridge that features the ball bearings, and inner and outer race as one unit. The outer race is a tight press-fit into the hub shell, while the axle contacts the inner race. These items are considered perishable, where old ones are taped out and new cartridges pressed in place
Center Lock: a Shimano spline system for mounting a brake rotor onto the hub
Clincher: the most common type of tire system on a road bike. Here a bead on the tire locks with a lip on the rim. Clincher tires use inner tubes to hold air
Cup and cone bearing: the alternative to cartridge bearing hubs is cup and cone. It’s most common on entry-level wheels and all those sold by Shimano. These feature loose ball bearings that run on a permanent outer bearing race, with a cone shaped inner race that can be adjusted.
Disc brake: brake technology proven in mountain biking (and automotive prior to that) that places a thin plate-like braking surface (rotor) at the hub with a caliper that clamps onto it to slow the bike down
Dish: the relation of the rim over the hub. On nearly all frame designs, the rim must be perfectly centered over the hub
Double wall rim: this refers to the internal cross section of a rim. Where a single wall rim has one layer of material for the spokes to connect to and the tire to sit on, a double wall rim adds an additional level of material separating the two. This additional layer creates a box type section, which greatly aids in rim stiffness and wheel durability
Eyelet: a reinforcing ring in the spoke hole of a rim. An eyeleted rim typically allows for greater spoke tension and therefore a more durable wheel. A rim that claims to feature double eyelets will have the eyelets travel through both walls of the rim (see double wall rim)
Freehub body: the mechanism on the rear wheel that allows a rider to coast or pedal backwards without resistance
Hub: sitting at the center of the wheel is the hub, which contains the axle, bearings and rear freehub and holds the spokes
Machined sidewall: a finishing process after the rim is made, which helps ensure its braking faces are parallel and even
Nipple: the nipple is the nut of the spoke. Typically the nipple sits at the rim, though some wheel designs place the nipple at the hub
Open-tubular: effectively a type of clincher tire system. Open tubulars differ slightly in their manufacturing technique, which is generally to a level similar to high-end tubulars
Quick release: a tool-free mechanism for attaching a wheel to a bike. It consists of a threaded rod connected to a lever-actuated cam assembly. The rod is slid through a hollow hub axle and a nut on the opposing side allows tension adjustment
Radial lacing: where the spoke leaves the hub and meets the rim in a straight line. This is the easiest form of wheel building and results in the shortest length (lightest weight) spoke possible. This style is popular for front wheels, but does not resist torque appropriately for use on the driveside of a rear wheel or with disc brakes
Rim: the outward hoop of the wheel that holds the tire and acts as a braking surface for rim brakes
Rim tape (AKA rim strip): protective tape used to cover the multiple spoke holes in a rim. Without this, an inner tube would expand through the rim holes and puncture. Some top wheelsets from Shimano, Fulcrum, Mavic and others do not require rim tape
The first step you should take before you shop for any kind of furniture is to measure the room it will be placed in. The dimensions of a dining room should inform not only the size of the table, but the general shape as well. A dining table doesn’t have to be rectangular. The shape of a table can change the overall impression of the room size. There are great expandable options in round and square tables as well. To get an even better idea of how the space can be laid out, use our online room planner. That way you can tryout round, oval, square and rectangular tables to see what will fit best in the room before you go shopping.
Here are a few rules of thumb to keep in mind when planning your dining room:
Take a Seat
Sit in the chair for some time; don’t go from one to the other too quickly. You will want your guests to linger over dinner conversation, so make sure that the chair is comfortable for a longer period of time. It should be wide enough for your guests to be comfortable. The chair should support the back and allow you to keep your feet on the floor.
Pub-height or counter-height tables have become very popular in recent years. While they have a youthful image, counter height tables are a great option for older people who have trouble getting up and down from low dining room chairs. If your kitchen or dining room has a window with a great view, a pub height table is a great way to enjoy. The higher seating can allow for unobstructed sight lines. The higher levels of these table tops also make them a great additional work surface in a kitchen with limited counter space. Keep in mind though; a pub height table may require you to raise your dining room light fixture.
Storage and Serving
Now that you have tables and chairs you should consider storage and display for your dining room. Below is a list of different storage pieces that you may want to add to your dining room.
Curio Cabinet: This cabinet is a free standing display case that has a glass front and sides without any enclosed cabinet space. Many styles include interior lights, glass shelves and mirrored backs.
Cabinet: These cabinets are normally part display and part storage. The top half of the china cabinet resembles a curio cabinet and possibly contains a railing to allow you to display plates, while the bottom contains cabinets for the storage of other commonly used items.
Buffet: Buffets are storage pieces, very often a cupboard or “dresser” of sorts to store serving dishes and platters. The upper surface is used as a service area.
Hutch: A frequent addition to a buffet, a hutch can provide both display and storage, leaving room for food service as well.
Sideboard: A sideboard is a table with a wide drawer in the center that is flanked by drawers and cupboards on the sides and is used for storing serving dishes and platters as well as for serving food.
Server: Similar to a sideboard, a server is a shallow table with drawers and is intended to hold food before it is placed on the table. The primary difference is that a server doesn’t have cabinet space.
Wok and Wok Lid
You’ll also need a handy wok lid for steaming, boiling, and bringing up the temperature for things that need a bit of a longer cooking time. When in doubt, whip out your wok!
Ok, so don’t be tempted to get a non-stick model. At the temperatures required for Chinese cooking, these are of questionable safety. Don’t start a fire, but don’t be afraid to heat that thing up, either! The wok is the heart of any Chinese kitchen. Just make sure you find a good one.
On the left is a picture of a wok similar to the one we have in our NJ kitchen, which you can see in a couple of our recipes, like this fried rice. On the right is a Wok Ring
These strainers are essential during deep frying to remove fine food bits and particles which may burn and spoil your oil. They also help decant the oil after frying for reuse. Rice Cooker
Without a doubt, this will save you the most headaches in the kitchen. Rice cookers these days come in a variety of styles and price points. Some have tons of different settings (for cooking different kinds of rice, porridges, and the like), while others just have an on and off button. Whatever your preference is, one of these babies will make sure you have perfect rice waiting for you every time. Our collective experiences says, save your money and pass on the multi-purpose units and go with a single purpose rice cooker.
Metal Steam Rack
A lot of people just think of stir fries when they think of Chinese food, but many dishes involve steaming as well (e.g. steamed fish, buns, shumai, etc., etc.). A metal steaming rack can go in the bottom of a deep pot or in your wok to hold up a heatproof dish full of delicious steamables.
6-Quart 3-Tier Chinese Steamer Stainless Steel Folding Hot Dish Tongs
Did you ever wonder how you were going to lift a hot plate from your steamer in tight quarters or burning yourself while doing it? This tool makes things a whole lot easier for smaller sized plates and dishes and we use tools like this one often in our kitchen.
Rimobul Asian Kitchen Stainless Steel Folding Hot Dish Plate Bowl Clip Plate Retriever Tongs
Another plate lifter that really works is this interesting looking gadget pictured below. We think it is better than the plier-like tongs that require a strong hand and grip strength to use. Check this one out if you do user a steamer often!
For those of you who have used a sharpening steel before, we highly recommend this Wusthof model. It has a wider shape instead of the more common round version. This tool is definitely a luxury, but it is worth the money if you are a fanatic like my dad. In my opinion, it’s much easier to use than the round version and is a godsend when you just need a little more edge while you’re working on the cutting board.
We use multiple colanders in our kitchen and on a busy day we use them all! We have a variety of them that are fine mesh, copper plated, decorative plastic and stainless steel but our colander of choice is stainless steel because it is durable and easy to clean.
We have learned over the years that electrics are really worth using for Chinese cooking and we love the Cuisinart processor and have been using one for years. Honestly, the only reason for not taking this out for use is the consequence of cleaning it up so sometimes we just use the traditional box grater or even the microplane! Mandoline Slicer
Mandoline slicers are great for slicing large quantities of vegetables or even if you just want thin or julienne slices. They are easy to use and worth the effort although you must be careful when using these sharp tools! Judy uses one often, especially when cooking Sichuan Stir-Fried Potatoes.
If you are a novice cook or just trying to perfect your knife skills, these gloves may be just what you need in the kitchen to build your confidence. Even professional chefs use them in high stress environments when risks of cutting yourself are high! Thermometer for Deep Frying
CDN IRL500 InstaRead Deep Fry Turkey Thermometer Meat Thermometer
Taylor Precision Products Classic Instant Read Pocket Thermometer
Hong Kong Egg Tart Tins
These aluminum tart tins are just awesome for making Hong Kong egg tarts. We used to save up our tins, wash them and reuse them for baking which is a good frugal practice but purchasing a batch of these for making Hong Kong Egg Tarts or any other mini tart recipe is truly worth the money!
Sealike 250 Pcs Disposable Baking Circular Egg Tart Tins Mold Mould Makers Cake Cups Foil Tart Pie Pans with Stylus
KitchenAid Stand Mixer
This Kitchen Aid Stand mixer is an essential tool that you must save up for if you are a serous cook, baker, foodie, and if you want to make our milk bread and the best chocolate cake recipe you have ever had! We own an older model for over 20 years now and it is still going so not much else to say other than we highly recommend it. There are lots of models out there and you may be tempted to go with a cheaper model but we are really happy that we went with the professional series stand mixer that has the arm to lower and raise the bowl. It is totally worth the cabinet space needed to store it or you can buy one of the twenty-four colors that it comes in and leave it out on your counter for all to marvel at!
Cast Iron Cookware
Here are some basic tips for caring for your cast iron cookware, which is similar to caring for a carbon steel wok:
Okay, so there are a lot of different brands, models, and sizes out there. For us, we have three main ones that we like using:
First of all thanks for reading my article to the end! I hope you find my reviews listed here useful and that it allows you to make a proper comparison of what is best to fit your needs and budget. Don’t be afraid to try more than one product if your first pick doesn’t do the trick.
Most important, have fun and choose your Shallow Serving Bowls wisely! Good luck!
So, TOP3 of Shallow Serving Bowls
- №1 — KooK 10 Inch Hammered Style Wave Serving Bowl – Stainless Steel
- №2 — Party Bargains Hard Plastic Angled Large Serving Bowls, Color: Clear, Value Pack of 5
- №3 — DOWAN 10 Inch/2 Quart Porcelain Pasta/Salad Serving Bowls- 2 Packs, Shallow, White