I don't own a set of steak knives and so I usually don't serve steak (or pork chops, etc.) at my dinner parties. Or is it that I don't often serve pork chops or steak at my dinner parties so therefore I don't own steak knives?
How does owning, nor not owning, a specific piece of kitchen equipment shape our dining habits?
I'm not sure why I don't have a set of steak knives in my kitchen. Perhaps it's because I'm not that big of a meat-eater or maybe it's because I hadn't done a registry when I got married (for some reason I think of steak knives as being the classic wedding gift.) Storage space also plays into it, of course, and a desire for keeping it simple and not owning too much stuff.
But I also know that if I did own a set of steak knives, I might just serve more of the kind of food that requires having them on hand. Ingredients work this way, too, of course. We tend to cook more pasta when we have it in the cupboard or we just don't buy pasta when we want to keep our carb consumption down.
Either way, it's interesting to note how having certain equipment promotes a certain way of cooking. Usually we acquire the equipment because we're interested in the kind of food it produces but sometimes not having that specific equipment is just as influential. I just discovered a paella pan tucked in the back of a cabinet, left over from a previous tenant. I love paella but I never considered making it at home. Now, of course, I will. Just having the pan on hand opens that possibility.
What piece of kitchen equipment has influenced your cooking?
Related: Wedding Registry: if You Could Do It All Over Again
(Image: Kansas City Steakhouse Knives) from overstock.com