Guide | 5 Must Have Tools

Guide | 5 Must Have Tools

We all have 5 go-to submission or passes, but do you have these 5 essential tools of the trade in your kitchen?

Intro

Whether it is at the gym, in the office or in the kitchen there are essential tools of the trade that will make your life easier. Granted they do not overlap…a good knife is not essential for a day in the cubicle (unless you are pulling an Office Space and cleaning some fish you just caught on your desk.) There are a million and one gadgets out there for the kitchen, but are they all needed? Absolutely not. They can be fun to toy around with like the Donkey Guard, but 10 out of 10 times the same result can be achieved with a very basic and fundamental technique or in the metaphor, tool. If you have been following Grappler Gourmet (you are awesome and I cannot thank you enough) here and/or within my Jiu Jitsu Mag articles then you like food and more so are open to learning how to make it. Well now that you have gotten your first stripe here in Grappler Gourmet’s Kitchen Academy it is time to learn about the tools of the trade. I never leave home, when going to cook, I do not take these too the gym nor should you, without these 5 must have tool of the trade.

How prepping for dinner feels some days while balancing work and jits
How prepping for dinner feels some days while balancing work and jits

5. Peeler | Mount

With enough peeling this peeler will change color. Kidding thats not a promotion its just getting dirty. Wash it.
With enough peeling this peeler will change color. Kidding thats not a promotion its just getting dirty. Wash it.

A good peeler will make your life so much easier, a bad peeler will waste food and mangle ingredients and no peeler will just not be acceptable. Having to peel potatoes was a traditional punishment, that is because back in the day peelers were not as advanced as they are today, hell most of the time having to “peel potatoes” meant you did it by hand with a small knife. If only unruly infantrymen could sneak in a nice peeler, we’d have a lot more peeled potatoes. I often use potatoes, asparagus and apples within my week of cooking and a peeler really makes life a lot easier when having to deal with them. Peeling asparagus will open your eyes to a whole new favorite food.Soldier peeling potatoes

4. A Good Spoon | Side Control

I play a mean big spoon guard.
I play a mean big spoon guard.

A spoon, one of the most prized possessions of cooks. Cooking requires stirring, measuring, scooping and most of all tasting. All of which a spoon is required. I do not mean just a basic spoon that you would use to eat cereal with. You want a larger than normal spoon with a pretty deep well and a slightly pointed tip. The tip is used to get into the corner of pans when stirring, a deep well is ideal for measuring options and you want something that will last. The options are endless. So it is safe to say that a good spoon is similar to a side control, because if you show up to the kitchen without a spoon or to the gym without side control game, you’re going to have a rough day.

3. Rubber Spatula | Butterfly Guard

Its not the size that matters...its how you use it...to save you dolla bills.
Its not the size that matters…its how you use it…to save you dolla bills.

The million dollar tool. That is because a rubber spatula will save a restaurant a million dollars because it will prevent waste. It might not save you a million but surely it will add up a penny at a time. Imagine you are making a smoothie in the blender and are pouring it into a cup, when you are done pouring have you gotten everything out of that blender? I doubt it. There is probably a tablespoon or 2 left stuck to the sides or trapped in the bottom. This is where a rubber spatula shines and saves the day. Just like how many times those butterfly hooks have saved you from a close pass. You can get every last drop out using this tool. Two tablespoons of extra smoothie might not sound like a lot but just think, if you are making smoothies 7 days a week that would be 14 Tbsp of smoothie, that over 3/4 of a cup. Times that by a year? 2.4 gallons of smoothie. Berries are expensive, a rubber spatula will pay for itself in a week.

2. Bench Scraper | Half Guard

Don't get addicted to using this and pick up nail clippings, change and all other things around the house.
Don’t get addicted to using this and pick up nail clippings, change and all other things around the house.

An unusual tool for most. But imagine you are cutting up onions and have them all over your cutting board. How do you then get them into the pan? pick up the board, walk it over to the pan and awkwardly try and scrap them all into the pan and lose half of them in the process? Or what about trying to pick up herbs off your cutting board? You can never really get all of them can you? With a bench scraper your mind will be blown. This tool will save you time, effort and headaches by being able to sneak under whatever you are working with and pick it up with ease and bring it to the pan, bowl, or plate. I compare the bench scraper to half guard because I never bring my knife without a bench scraper, it truly is half of the whole.

1. Chefs Knife | Closed Guard

Always take the back never the front of this training partner!
Always take the back never the front of this training partner!

A chef knife is the first thing you associate with cooking for a reason, it is a must have. When knife shopping you will see a ton of different brands, shapes and sizes out there. Which you choose does matter in the sense that you really should invest a little money in a quality knife. It will last a lot longer, be a lot safe and really make your life a lot easier. Nothing compares to a sharp knife. Well I spoke too soon, closed guard compares in the sense that it really is a must have. If you do not have a closed guard, you are not doing Jiu Jitsu. At the same time a sharp knife is a safe knife, you are more likely to cut yourself using a dull knife because they will bounce off or flare out when cutting, where as a knife sharp knife slides right through and requires less pressure. A dull closed guard will get you passed in no time, sharpen your skills.
Which to buy?

Styles
Choose your weapon...well literally they double as weapons. Most Japanese knife makers  hail from famous sword forgers.
Choose your weapon…well literally they double as weapons. Most Japanese knife makers hail from famous sword forgers.

German or “Western:” Generally cheaper price wise. This is the typical style knife that I am sure you are picturing in your head. They are heavier duty, thicker and more durable. Making them great for the casual cook.

Ceramic: These are a cheap alternative because they are sharp as hell right out of the package and cheap. But they come at the cost that they are in fact ceramic. So the blade will dull faster, are very brittle and not designed for longevity. You will save some money in the short term but will find yourself repurchasing.

Japanese: Typically more expensive because they designed with finesse in mind. Japanese knife making is really an art form for another art form, cooking. The steel used in the forge varies greatly and each knife has its own purpose, these are not ideal for every day utility use. But if you are food geek like myself you can find yourself with a collection of these. Ill admit I have a Japanese knife I use strictly for cutting herbs and that is it.

Suggestion
Casual cooks: Western or ceramic
Enthusiasts: Japanese

Conclusion

We are ever improving our lives day by day, that is really want the BJJ lifestyle is all about. Part of the process relies on setting yourself up for success. With this tool kit you can really do just about anything that you need to within the kitchen. Making your life that much easier. If you are looking to add some tools on the mat head over to Inverted Gear and use grapplergourmet for 10% off. Already have all the tools you need and want to stay on the top, or one might say to Stay Alpha? Then you need to check out Q5 Combat and use GOURMET10 for 10% off. Like those type of deals and these type of posts? Sign up for the Grappler Gourmet Weekly newsletter for FREE below! Eat well, train hard. Oss



Images: Esquire Europeanart Usesthis Petchonka Postcardy

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