Now, I’m not one to promote a ‘brand’ specifically – as I shop wherever I can find the cheapest products, flitting between my local Sainsburys at the top of my street, to the large out-of-town Tesco when I can cadge a lift from a friend, to Aldi and Lidl when I don’t have a Small Boy to cart around and a spare two hours for the stroll there and back.
But I’m often asked about cheap kitchen equipment, and a sticking point on online discussion forums seems to be ‘well she has a BLENDER.’ Yes, I do. My blender, that I use unapologetically for soups, and pasta sauces, was £9.99 from the Tesco Value range, and has lasted me two years so far, with a level of use that can accurately be described as ‘heavy’. It has two settings – ‘blend’ and ‘off’ – and none of the fancy-pants attachments of the so-called professional monsters.
I mean, seriously? A whisk on a blender? What’s wrong with, well, a whisk? And if I want to beat a cake mix, I use a wooden spoon. If I want to chop something, I use a knife or a pair of scissors. (I understand that not everybody can, but most people can, and all of the fancy pants chefs I can think of that have whizzy-whizzy devices are more than capable of chopping, stirring and whisking all by themselves.)
I thought I had a bargain with my ten quid simple blender – until one of my readers sent me a link to this hand blender, currently available for a little over £4 at Tesco!
My other kitchen equipment consists of a small frying pan that was 99p from Ikea, a loaf tin from the 99p shop, a roasting tin from the 99p shop, two non stick saucepans and some very basic utensils. You know, wooden spoons and the like.
I don’t have a bread maker – as I said in the Airy Fairy Easy Peasy Soda Bread recipe – I have a free bread maker in my palms and my knuckles, and they’re easy to clean, and don’t require any electricity to run, as well as being deliciously therapeutic…
If I find any more bargain kitchen equipment, I’ll be sure to keep you posted. If you find any, be sure to let me know!
Jack Monroe. Twitter @MsJackMonroe. http://www.facebook.com/agirlcalledjack