Oh, it's quite a sight, isn't it? And don't even get me started on the baking pans tucked on shelves and the espresso machines that make you drool...a little.
Shiny, shimmery, fancy schmancy kitchen stuff. Does the good (i.e. PRICEY) stuff make you a good cook, even a Top Chef? It reminds me of middle school when the kids on the basketball team would buy Air Jordans to "make them jump higher and get more baskets." Move over Michael Jordan, little Sam's mommy just got suckered into buying him $130 shoes.
Okay, so we're not suckers; many of us are savvy, bargain shoppers who just want to get better at life (cooking) and want to do it without going into bankruptcy to buy that $1500 pot that was too good to pass up. But a splurge is okay, too, sometimes. The funny Mark Bittman has a great article on the essentials needed in any kitchen. They're practical items that are as cheap as $1 and as expensive as...well, he doesn't recommend any expensive.
When you look at the photo/diagram of the kitchen supplies he recommends, I (basically a nobody compared to this food giant) completely agree. However, investing in a mandoline has yet to happen, mostly because I like all 10 of my fingers, thank you. But for those of us who are not so clutzy, a mandoline is a great addition.
Hope you enjoy this article. And, if you have another 7 minutes, I'd read his article on Meat (same website on the main page). Interesting stuff, friends. Happy cooking, bargain hunting for a $3 baking pan and *most of all* happy eating!!