Restaurant dining teaches new dishes, and how much better ingredients can be than we thought. And civil behaviour. Working in someone else’s kitchen – perhaps house-sitting, leasing an apartment or just contributing a course – teaches about equipment.
A borrowed kitchen can show that other people don’t cook or, if they do, put up with thin saucepans and ineffective knives. But we often learn useful tips.
No doubt you have lifted out toast without burning your fingers using toaster tongs all your life. I only discovered them in a sunny apartment in Le Marais a few years ago.
Our present Latin Quarter studio provides more basic kitchen equipment. No toaster tongs, but why no ordinary kitchen tongs? I don’t really miss a microwave oven; the small, bench-top oven is handier.
We do have “1 Couvercle (petit)” and “1 Couvercle (moyen)“, which translate on the inventory as “Cover (small)” and “Cover (big)”. These are interchangeable lids for the three sizes of “Casserole” (saucepan).
The name, “ouvre–boîte camping“, puts the familiar can-opener in its place, as does the translation, “Military can-opener”.
The item, “1 Clef universelle” (shown left), translates as “Sardine tin key”. I recognised its purpose immediately, having grown up with smaller versions welded to such tins. Searching the supermarkets, we are yet to find a tin without its own ring-pull. We’ll hunt the specialty shops.