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Guest Picks: 20 Ingredients for a Classic French Kitchen
French flair is easy with these useful, classic Continental-inspired pieces
During the years we lived in Paris, I was fortunate to take weekly classes with local chefs at Le Cordon Bleu. The French keep simple, uncluttered kitchens and use the best, freshest ingredients. Here are some fun, useful and inexpensive ideas to give your kitchen some of that French flair. — Mary Ann from classic•casual•home
Pixie Indigo Coffee Machine - $249
Okay, this might not seem very inexpensive, but if you like superb coffee it will save you money in the long run. One coffee capsule is about $.55 — compare that to Starbucks. If you like a nice café au lait in the morning or an after-dinner espresso, this will not disappoint. It is less expensive than many fancier espresso machines, the design is sleek and it comes in several colors too.
Porcelain Latte Bowls - $35
These charming "Bistro de Paris" porcelain bowls are great for oatmeal, soups, ice cream, steaming lattés or chocolat chaud. Très Français! The set of four comes packaged in a vintage-style tin. My daughter hinted about these for Christmas.
Chef's Essential Apron - $28
Here is a cute and functional apron to wear while preparing votre dîner.
Multicolor Stacking Mugs or Espresso Cups Sets of 6 - $12.99
You'll feel like you are sipping your coffee at a Parisian café with these cups — we certainly do! They take up little storage with the stainless steel racks and can go in the dishwasher.
Hot or Cold Milk Frother - $99
Make perfect hot or cold milk froth in just a few seconds. You will want to make cappuccinos for all your guests!
LÄMPLIG Chopping Board - $9.99
We have this wooden cutting board on the counter next to the stove. What a great price! Looks good as it ages too.
Provençal Bee Glasses - $8.95
These sturdy glasses would be fun to serve wine in for a casual dinner. Embellished with bees, they are from the oldest glass maker in France.
Covered Butter Dish - $24
Serve room temperature butter for your baguette in this pretty, vintage-looking dish.
Silpat Silicone Cookie Sheet Liner - $24.95
A staple! All the French patisserie chefs use these flexible, nonstick (does not need to be greased), reusable liners — they're great for cookies, biscuits or croissants.
Small French Wire Whisk - $7.95
This is an indispensable tool for whipping up fresh salad dressings or eggs for omelets.
12" Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Skillet - $18.99
You will want an inexpensive, heavy skillet to sear and cook meats such as steak au poivre. This is another French kitchen staple.
Horta Champagne Glass - $12
How elegant will you feel sipping champagne from this detailed but reasonably-priced flute?
Madame/Monsieur Napkin Rings - $38
At our next dinner party, I can use these for for a “boy-girl-boy-girl” seating arrangement. Cute!
Striped Fringe Napkins, Set of 4 - $49
The French conserve on paper products, and how elegant would it be to use these monogrammed napkins every day? Comes with free monogramming — I want these!
Large Rectangle Slate Board - $24.95
A cheese course after the main dish and before a sweet dessert is customary in France. You can serve gourmet cheeses with style on these slate cutting boards.
Laguiole Cheese Knives - $32
Laguiole is a famous French cutlery company dating back to 1829. We have some pieces similar to these and use them all the time for cheese and appetizers.
Nonstick Rectangular Tart Pan - $27
I use this pan to make lemon tarts from a recipe that I learned in Paris. You could also impress your friends with some beautiful fruit tarts. The ruffled sides make for easy removal.
de Buyer Crêpe Pan - $24.95
This makes a fun gift for the crêpe lover! My son likes his filled with Nutella and sliced bananas.