I may have recently been overly into the theme of “Treat yo’ self” these days – but zero regrets on it so far!

About a year ago, I stayed at this absolutely charming luxury A-Frame near the Berkshires (but in NY) that had some NICE kitchen toys I fell in love with: a huge thick wooden cutting board (I’ve only ever had plastic) and a nice wide All-Clad skillet (the fanciest I’ve ever had was Calphalon).

staying in a dream 😴

Needless to say, the experience of cooking in that beautiful Airbnb using those wonderful tools never left my memory and I’d been since dreaming of not only returning to the cabin but also of someday owning my own wooden cutting board and All-Clad pan.

I know that being in a state of complete rest and relaxation, in the company of a wonderful friend and my husband, and being surrounded by dreamy pure snow had something to do with it – but there was also something special in how chopping up leeks felt on a good cutting board, and the sound of onions sizzling in that All-Clad pan – something I don’t have good enough vocabulary to describe but can only promise was an experience that stayed in my mind, yearning to repeat itself on a regular basis.

The days have arrived my friends. A few months ago, my parents-in-law gifted me generously with a Boos cutting block which I have been using daily ever since. You know that scene in the movie Ratatouille where Anton Ego is immediately transported to a fond memory when he takes a bite of the dish Remy makes for him? Well, chopping up veggies on this cutting board everyday reminds me of that serene time I had with my friend and hubs in that Airbnb. I probably sound like a crazy person but I’m merely trying to express how much I love this cutting board! (Thank you Mom & Dad!)

prep time is now one of my favorite things to do with this amazing cutting board!

I have now also purchased for myself my very own All-Clad pan! I will fully admit that I chose this specific one primarily because it was on sale…but I also liked that it was more or less the shape of a decaying nonstick pan that I needed to replace anyway. I ordered this after Christmas and just received it this week – and boy have I been enjoying my new toy!!

yesterday’s (a Monday night) dinner: Skillet Chicken Thighs with Creamy Tomato Basil Spinach Sauce (Julia’s Album recipe – I was thrilled to see her photos featuring an All-Clad pan as well!)

I used it again tonight to sauté haricot verts with olive oil, garlic and chopped almonds (unfortunately I forgot to take a photo of the beautiful greens cooking so beautifully in that beloved pan) but they were absolutely delicious and came out perfectly.

Tuesday night: steelhead trout with sautéed haricot verts sprinkled with toasted almonds and buttered Baby Dutch gold potatoes

Moral of the story, of all this mumbo jumbo: I have learned now that these items are an investment worth making for anyone who spends a decent amount of time in the kitchen and wants to enjoy themselves doing so. Are they expensive? Absolutely. But well worth the money as they are pieces that I expect will last a lifetime, and that I’ve seen firsthand make a difference in my meal results! No regrets on treating myself here 🙂

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