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The Well-Equipped Cook
 
A Curated Collection of Equipment with Tips, Videos, and Recipes
Up Your Appetizer Game
Up Your Appetizer Game
 
View Equipment Guide
 
No gathering is complete without some tasty snacks, whether they’re a precursor to a larger meal or the stars of the show. This week, our editors have selected the right roster of tools for making all kinds of appetizers, from simple dips to elegant canapés. Paired with the recipes in All-Time Best Appetizers, this equipment guarantees that your spread of small plates will score a slam dunk every time.
 
Elite Cuisine 1.5 Quart Mini Slow Cooker
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
 
Elite Cuisine 1.5 Quart Mini Slow Cooker
 
A gentle warm setting keeps dip molten and melty for several hours.
Upgrade Your Kitchen ›
 
Oster Titanium Infused DuraCeramic 3-Qt Fondue Pot
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
 
Oster Titanium Infused DuraCeramic 3-Qt Fondue Pot
 
Heats every type of fondue evenly and consistently.
Upgrade Your Kitchen ›
 
Anchor Hocking 6-Piece Nesting Prep Bowl Set
RECOMMENDED
 
Anchor Hocking 6-Piece Nesting Prep Bowl Set
 
Wide, shallow bowls are easy to hold, fill, empty, and clean.
Upgrade Your Kitchen ›
 
View More Equipment
 
 
 
A Kitchen Must-Have
 
Wüsthof Gourmet 4¾-inch Cheese Plane
 
 
Recommended by Carolyn Grillo
 
Editorial Assistant, Tastings & Testings
 
Wüsthof Gourmet 4¾-inch Cheese Plane
I almost always make a cheese board when I’m entertaining. It requires minimal prep and maintenance, offers a varying selection of food for guests with different tastes, and is just beautiful on the table—not to mention there’s not much I love more than the combination of cheese, crackers, and fresh fruit. This Wüsthof cheese plane helps me cut even, clean slices of my favorite cheese, aged gouda. The thin slices are the perfect thickness, so the gouda just melts on my tongue. I can use the cheese plane to slice a few pieces of the gouda before guests arrive so it’s ready for their enjoyment!
 
Upgrade Your Kitchen
 
 
How to Make the Ultimate Cheese Board
Recipe Recommendation
 
How to Make the Ultimate Cheese Board
 
I love this guide because it touches on the optional accompaniments—such as figs, nuts, and jams—that bring a cheese board from “good” to “ultimate.”
Get Recipe ›
 
 
 
Q&A with the Test Kitchen
 
Q: Does grating cheese in advance affect its flavor?
 
Grated Parmesan Cheese
A: To find out, we bought a large wedge each of our winning Parmesan and Pecorino Romano cheeses and split each into thirds. We grated one wedge of each type of cheese and refrigerated the samples in airtight containers. After one week, we repeated the process. At the two-week mark, we grated the remaining wedges and compared them with the one- and two-week-old grated cheeses. Every taster could identify the freshly grated cheeses. The week-old cheeses had slightly muted flavors but were still acceptable. The two-week-old cheeses had lost so much complexity that they were deemed unacceptable. For the best flavor, Parmesan and Pecorino Romano should be consumed within a week of grating.
 
 
Cook's Illustrated and Cook's Country
MAGAZINE Recommendation
 
This tip is from the January/February 2018 issue of Cook’s Illustrated magazine. You can find even more tips like this in both of our magazines: Cook’s Illustrated and Cook’s Country.
 
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America's Test Kitchen Cooking School
 
Watch and Learn:
How to Work with Puff Pastry
 
How to Work with Puff Pastry
 
Puff pastry is a classic component of baking that we use in many of our appetizer recipes. Learn more about this key ingredient and how to overcome some of its obstacles from our Online Cooking School.
 
Watch the Video
 
 
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New from the Tastings & Testings Team
 
 
 
Equipment Guide
 
The Sauce Maker’s Kitchen
 
 
Equipment Guide
 
Best Blender Bonanza
 
Equipment Review
 
Garlic Presses
 
 
Taste Test
 
Crumbled Feta
 
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America’s Test Kitchen is the home of Cook’s Illustrated and Cook’s Country magazines, America’s Test Kitchen and Cook’s Country from America’s Test Kitchen public television shows, dozens of best-selling cookbooks, member websites, and the America’s Test Kitchen Cooking School. We have a single mission: to help you succeed every time you cook.
 
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