Jeffrey's 3 Favorite Kitchen Tools (and Favorite Cookbooks Too)

Kitchen Tour

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Who cooks and eats here: Caroline Diani & Jeffrey Doornbos
See their kitchen: Caroline & Jeffrey's Elegant California Kitchen
Where: Santa Barbara, California
Rent or Own? Own

Jeffrey does a lot of the cooking here in the Diani and Doornbos residence. He learned to cook mostly by trial and error. During budget-oriented grad school years he realized that in order to eat well, he must cook food himself. Since then he has developed into an avid cook, with a well-stocked kitchen.

Here are a few of Jeffrey's favorite cooking tools — are any of these your favorites too?

1. Cast Iron Skillets

Jeffrey's favorite cast iron skillets come from a camping supply store. He bought these trusty pans while on an outdoors trip with friends, and has kept (and loved) them for the past ten years. Jeffrey regularly cleans and seasons the skillets with sea salt and oil. He uses them for dishes such as stuffed pork loin and whole fish.

2. Moroccan Tagine

The tagine was purchased in Morocco on the couple's honeymoon, and they bought it after enjoying tasty vegetarian couscous dishes topped with grilled fish and plenty of lemons. They cook with it frequently and it always reminds them of their adventure together.

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3. Paella Pan

The paella pan and cookbook are used for parties. Caroline and Jeffrey are such natural entertainers; they like to prep a lot ahead and assemble as guests arrive, not slave over the stove. Paella is an obvious choice for a party as it's a one pot dish and everyone goes crazy over it.

4. Jamie Oliver's Cookbooks

Jeffrey loves Jamie Oliver cookbooks. Being married to a Brit, Jeffrey enjoys creating cozy dishes a-la-Jamie Oliver for his expat wife. The seasonality, ease, freshness and comfort of Jamie's recipes appeals to the couple immensely. For holidays, the two turn out an entire menu of British foods such as Lincolnshire pies, steamed puddings, and chocolates. What fun!

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(Image credits: Leela Cyd)