Baking stones are used as a baking aid in modern gas and electric ovens. They are porous, and so absorb condensation from what is baking on top of them, causing a crisper crust. They need to be thoroughly heated in advance of using. You put what you are baking right on top of them.
A baking tray (aka baking sheet, cookie sheet, sheet pan) is a flat sheet of metal designed for baking or roasting food on in an oven. A baking tray is often one of the unsung workhorses of a kitchen, taken for granted when present but sorely missed when not.
Steel ball whisks have tines that are not connected at their ends; instead, they end in small metal balls. Fans swear they are more efficient than regular whisks.
Compared to standard sauce whisks, balloon whisks have thinner tines which are further apart. They are designed to introduce a lot of air into the food item being prepared.
Bamboo steamers are cooking vessels made of bamboo meant for use in cooking food items by steam.
Banana slicers are cutting tools designed to quickly produce uniformly-sized, disc-shaped slices of banana. The slicers have a banana-shaped frame, usually made of plastic and usually yellow, to drive home the association with bananas. The frame has 19 or 20 plastic wires going horizontally through it. The frames are larger than most bananas to accommodate…
A banneton is a basket in which free-formed bread is put to rise. The purpose is to shape the dough, and to let some moisture leave the surface of the dough.
Baskets have been an important part of food gathering, transportation and storage since time immemorial.
Basting brushes are brushes uniquely designed for basting liquids such as oils, marinades, sauces, glazes, meat juices, etc.. onto items while they are cooking. As such, the design of basting brushes tries to meet two challenges: holding enough of the liquid item per trip from the sauce bowl to the item that is being basted,…
The expression, ‘batterie de cuisine’, means literally ‘your kitchen artillery.’ Its actual usage is a bit less dramatic, though: it is taken to mean the collection of essential tools that you need in your kitchen to be an efficient and good cook in the cuisine that you practise.
Bean slicers are tools designed to French-slice green and runner beans. They allow fast, efficient transformation of beans into thin, uniformly-cut pieces. There are many different kinds and models. Some are completely manual. They are simply a block with an open area with wires strung through it at the other end. You press and pull…
Bimetallic-coil thermometers have in them a coil made of two different metals, which expand at different rates. This causes the coil also to expand, thus moving a dial. These type of thermometers must be inserted into meat a minimum depth for accurate reading.
Birch whisks are made of fine, stiff birch twigs bundled together. The whisks are flexible, and thus good for light sauces
A biscuit brake is a machine to beat air into an unleavened dough in order to make raised biscuits. Before biscuit brakes, the work used to be done laboriously by hand.
Biscuit cutters are tall, round cutters pressed into thick dough to make biscuits (North American style). The cutters were traditionally made of tin but can be made of any material now.
A blender is an electrical kitchen device used used for blending, puréeing and emulsifying. There are two main types, countertop, and hand-held.
A blending fork (aka mixing fork) is a fork with over-sized space between its tines and a thick, sturdy handle. It can be used to cut and blend fat into flour, mix dry or wet ingredients, for serving meat, for fluffing rice, etc. It may have the standard four tines that a table fork has;…
A kitchen blowtorch can brown one area of food, without heating the rest of the food, or the physical vessel the food is in or on. The classic home use is for caramelizing the top on crème brûlée.
Boards in cooking can be used for preparation, cooking, presentation, and serving. They are traditionally made of wood but depending on the purpose, modern ones may be made of glass, stone, marble, or plastic.
Bogrács kettles are large Hungarian kettles used for outdoor cooking over an open fire, particularly for dishes such as goulash. They are completely open and have no cover.
Bowls are often suggested as priority candidates for a place on the list of the earliest cooking tools devised by man. “Found bowls”, some speculate, may have been indentations in rocks or logs. Other vegetation provided bowls also: the archaeological record shows that “tough-rinded vegetable gourds of various kinds made very handy prehistoric bowls…” Wilson,…
Branding irons for home use in cooking are miniature branding irons for burning brand marks into food that is being grilled.
A bread bin (aka bread box) is a solid container in which fresh bread is stored at room temperature. They come in many different shapes, sizes and designs. Some people think they are old-fashioned; many people still swear by them.
A bread couche is a bed made of stiff fabric for shaped bread dough to rise in. It is used for bread that is baked free-standing, not in pans. It helps the dough keep its shape while proofing and rising.