vegan baker


I am an equipment snob.
February 9, 2008, 6:26 pm
Filed under: equipment, exotic foods | Tags: , ,

Yes, it is true. A big old snob. Le Creuset, Global, All Clad, Calphalon, KitchenAid and Cuisinart. But this is pedestrian stuff, you know? This is Williams-Sonoma-style snobbery, which is more about the appearance of quality than quality itself. You don’t need “supersteel” to cook well.

I’ve worked in food service long enough to know that restaurant suppliers are the way to go, assuming you can wrangle your way in. There’s a whole world of generalized suppliers with pleasantly zippy names… see Zesco, KaTom, and, my favorite (because it seems so misleading) Instawares.

Also worth noting is that a lot of specialist supplies are online now. J.B. Prince sells a variety of normal chef’s tools like microtongs in addition to some of Alinea‘s molecular gastronomy presentation pieces. You have to buy a lot of things in bulk, but who doesn’t need five hundred green glass soup spoons?

As far as restaurant-y ingredients go, this is a source for a spectacular number of avant garde/vegan gums and emulsifiers. You can buy bulk agar (a gum, like a firmer vegan gelatin), soy lecithin (the vegan emulsifier), glycerin (for the vegan fondant recipe), sodium alginate (both a gum and an emulsifier, which chefs use to make crazy stuff like fruit caviar), xanthan gum (thickens 8 times better than cornstarch) and on and on. This site, a Canadian sweets company, sells a lot of the same stuff on an uglier website. And while it is for the home cook rather than the professional, I still want to spend every penny I have at L’Epicierie.

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