I’m a firm believer in using high quality cooking/baking tools to achieve high quality results. This belief was greatly reinforced to me when I started working in a professional pastry kitchen at Fauchon. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve dealt with problems in the past with warping baking sheets during baking which was caused by very thin gauge metal or very thin bottomed pots where cooking temperatures were uneven. Mind you, you can make do with cheaper equipment and achieve somewhat good results but what I have found from past experience is that I can achieve greater consistency with optimal results if I use high quality equipment.
Let’s now talk about price. High price does not always equal good quality. There are plenty of department stores and even home kitchen supply specialty shops selling high priced kitchen tools in Malaysia and Singapore that I have found the quality of these tools to be suspect. In fact, I have, in many cases, purchased professional level quality cooking and baking equipment from professional specialty shops that was priced the same as high-end equipment sold in large department stores but mine was of much much higher quality. In the end, you must do your market research to find out which brands produce the highest quality at the most reasonable prices. You will only know this from either working directly with particular brands, reading what others are saying about certain brands on public discussion boards, researching the Internet, or asking professionals what brands they tend to stick with in their career.
One confession I must make though. There are certain tools I buy that I am not too particular about with regards to quality. Tools like mixing spoons, bowl scrapers, measuring cups, for example, are things I can buy anywhere and am not partial to any brand. These are tools where performance is not critical to my food preparation and thus, I tend to buy these items cheap and treat them as disposable where necessary. Equipment like baking sheets, pots, pans, knives, and motorized equipment, (mixers, food processors, etc), I will purchase from professional sources and will spend as necessary to ensure I get the best equipment within my budget. This is where I make the least compromise and I am rarely disappointed when I go this route.
My favourite source for professional kitchen equipment is Eurochef in Asia (http://www.eurochefasia.com). Eurochef is part of the Matfer-Bourgeat Group (http://www.matferbourgeat.com), a French company founded in 1814 and has been a major supplier to the professional hotel and restaurant industry around the globe. Eurochef in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia is where I source most of my kitchen equipment from and they provide a very personalized and friendly service. I recommend them highly.
Unit P-1-21, Block P
No 60, Jalan Sri Hartamas 1
Sri Hartamas, 50480
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Tel : +60 (0) 3 6201 8863
Fax : +60 (0) 3 6201 4057
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org