Tuesday, October 2, 2018

You're Right, Winston!

Give us the tools and we will finish the job. ~ Winston Churchill

When we outfitted the house in MD, it was with a combination of things from NJ, things from thrift shops, and some new things. Some of the new things were from Walmart, and some of those were big mistakes.

The other day I decided to make mashed potatoes to go with the marinated steak I was grilling. I got out the paring knife from Walmart and attempted to peel potatoes. The knife was so dull that it was almost impossible to peel the potatoes, and the cook's knife was just as bad, barely able to chop potatoes in half. John came home and I finished the job with the little Swiss army knife he carries on his key chain. 

As soon as we were done with dinner, I searched for a good kitchen store in Elkton. There doesn't seem to be one, so I checked Amazon. Last year I got some decent knives for Ryan for Christmas to replace his Walmart knives, and he had raved about how good they are, so I ordered some for myself. They arrived the next day and I excitedly opened the package and started making potato salad. 

Oh, the joy of a good sharp knife! I cut potatoes, I sliced olives, and I chopped celery.

I chopped more celery because I was having so much fun.

I looked around for more things to slice, but all I could find was a banana to slice into my yogurt for lunch. A sharp knife wasn't necessary, but it was a pleasure to use!

My grandfather was a woodworker and he always told us to use the best tools we could afford. I really should have known better than to purchase good kitchen equipment from a big box store. 

The knives I ordered from Amazon are Victorinox, and my grandfather would be proud. They are sharp, reasonably priced, and the best tools for the jobs I need to perform in the kitchen. I got an 8-inch chef's knife, a 6-inch utility knife, a 4.5-inch serrated utility knife, and a 4-inch paring knife. John's Victorinox Swiss army knife worked well, and these Victorinox knives work even better. 

I'm making tacos for dinner tonight, and I can hardly wait to chop tomatoes and lettuce with my new knives! :-)


  1. I certainly understand the joy of a good, sharp knife! And those dull knives will assist you in cutting off a finger, but maybe yours were too dull to do that. I have looked at these knives on Amazon, and it's good to know they are worth the price. I wish you happy hunting for all the little things like this that will continue to come up over the next couple of months.

  2. The right knife is a blessing. Dull knives are dangerous.

    Steve got a set of Henckels knives as a work gift. I love them.

  3. Oh, YES! This was our same experience in outfitting our place up north. Initially, it was full of cast-offs, cheap substitutes, and plenty of not-so-good utensils. Somehow, it seemed like "secondary" housing meant "less-than" living. When we finally figured out that our needs and tastes didn't change just because we left our "primary" residence, our up north standard-of-living vastly improved. (It felt especially good to get rid of the ineffective knives -- and the flat pillows!) Have fun with your tacos!

  4. My grandfather was a finish carpenter and he always said the same thing - buy the best tools you can afford. I'm glad you got knives that are working well. But really, the thing I love most about this post? TACOS.

  5. Woo hoo! I bought Cut-co knives a long time ago and wondered if I got hosed. But I didn't and they have held up wonderfully. Also...I think on the list of desert island things...a paring knife is in the top 3! (Boone and Doug next?) (Sorry Dan! :-))

  6. So true. I love my good knives... and I'm reminded that they are due for sharpening!!

  7. I need to update our knives. They are old. We have never really splurged on a true set!!! THat would be wonderful. I love your photos

    1. A good sharp knife makes food preparation a joy. I don't know what I enjoyed more last night - eating the tacos or cutting tomatoes and slicing lettuce with my new knives!

    2. Good knives are the only way to go in the kitchen. If the knife is dull I'm the one who ends up with a cut finger!

  8. When I lived on my own after college, I bought cheap knives. And they were worth what I paid for them. It wasn't until I had good knives (the expensive ones my husband and I registered for when we were getting married) that I realized what a huge difference a good knife makes!

  9. my sister brings her chef's knife along to all the VRBO's we visit. It makes cooking so much more fun to have a good, sharp knife! I can see why chefs take theirs with them.

  10. I love potato salad with extra celery!! Way to go! :)

    And, I have found in most of life... you get what you pay for. Walmart works for some things, but not for all things!


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