6 Gift Ideas for the Home Pizza Chef

By tank

With the holidays around the corner, I thought it'd be good to highlight some of the coolest kitchen tools out this year that are available to home chefs.  Cooking is fun in its own right, but it's even more fun when you have all the right tools to do the job.

Digital Laser Infrared Thermometer

Etekcity Lasergrip 1080 Non-contact Digital Laser IR Infrared Thermometer Temperature Gun

This infrared thermometer is pretty nifty.  It allows you take a temperature reading of any surface by aiming this gun at it.  As a guy who likes his techy toys, this one is fun to break out whenever I get a chance.  Aside from the commercial uses this was made for, it works great in the kitchen and out in the yard for reading the temperature on the grill, in the skillet when you're frying with oil, and reading the temperature on my pizza stone or pizza steel.  You'll still want to have a probe thermometer (I recommend the iDevices Kitchen Thermometer ) to read the internal temperature of the whatever you may be cooking.

Jenaluca Herb Scissors

Jenaluca Herb Scissors Stainless Steel - Multipurpose Kitchen Shear with 5 Blades and Cover with Cleaning Comb

Say good-bye to tedious mincing and chopping with the most useful, fun kitchen gadget ever! Two snips with the sharp, finely balanced 5 blades equals 10 knife chops.  Sometimes you get tired of chopping vegetables all the time.  Now you don't always have to, you can brandish these scissors, and make quick work of whatever vegetables need cutting.

OXO Good Grips Stainless Steel Food Scale with Pull-Out Display

OXO Good Grips Stainless Steel Food Scale with Pull-Out Display

A good kitchen scale is an invaluable tool, and the OXO stainless steel food scale is one of the best.  I use my kitchen scale for weighing out ingredients for the dough.  A scale really comes in handy when it comes to scaling your recipe up or down.  By carefully measuring and weighing your ingredients, you can help prevent changes in the quality of the end product.

KitchenAid KSM150PSER Artisan Stand Mixer with Pouring Shield

KitchenAid KSM150PSER Artisan Stand Mixer with Pouring Shield, 5 Quarts, Empire Red

The KitchenAid Stand Mixer is probably the most popular and most commonly seen and used mixer in the industry.  It's used by professionals, by television chefs, and by home cooks.  I received mine as a gift, after hand mixing many batches of dough, and looking for a good sturdy alternative.  It comes in a variety of sizes (4.5 - 6 quarts), it's sturdy and powerful, and it's compatible with over 15 attachments (including the dough-kneading hook), making it one of the most versatile tools for the kitchen.  

Baking Steel

Baking Steel

"This crust is money!" That's what I heard from my wife after having homemade pizzas cooked on the Baking Steel.  Having put it through its paces over the past year, I'm in agreement with her.  Pizza crusts come out crispier and cooks faster on the Baking Steel than my ceramic pizza stone.

Pizza Peel

Ironwood Gourmet Acacia Wood Pizza Peel
Artaste 32352 Aluminum Pizza Peel with Folding Handle

To get your pizza from your workstation to the oven, it's good to have a pizza peel. There are metal ones and wood ones. Metal pizza peels are for picking up pizzas and putting them in the oven, whereas wooden peels are usually used as surfaces on which you can build your pizzas and then move them into oven. Perforated metal ones are good to use because they allow excess flour to fall from the bottom. If you are making multiple pizzas at once, you’ll want multiple wooden ones, but you'll only need one metal peel. You’ll build the pizzas on the wooden peels, then use the metal peel to transport them to the oven.

Now that you've had a chance to browse my pantry and cookware I hope you will feel encouraged to be adventurous and add one or more to your wish list for the upcoming holiday season! Cooking is great but it's even better when you can liven things up with versatile and interesting gadgets! 

Happy Holidays! Happy Cooking!