Hopefully this guide will help you look with a clear eye to determine if your applainces are actually serving you the way they should, or just collecting dust in your cupboard, and leaving you with a sinking feeling of guilt for not using them.
I also have a Blendtec blender and a Kitchen Aid mixer. The Blendtec was a Christmas gift a few years ago, and I never knew I needed a great blender until we got one. We had a cheap one that I sort of despised, but once we got a nice one, it kind of rocked my world and I use it all the time. I don't think I will ever be able to go back (and hopefully with my Blendtec, I won't ever have to!
One time someone asked what I use our Kitchen Aid for. I think most people make yeast bread in theirs. I infrequently make bread in mine, and I make bread all the time. I usually make quick breads (like zucchini bread, or muffin batter), pie crust (I make this almost every week), and cookies/brownies. The Kitchen Aid is also great for beating eggs or whipping cream. I love having my kitchen aid, but don't think it is necessary for every kitchen. A bowl and spoon will work just as well for most people.
So what should you have in your kitchen?
Here are a few questions to help you deciding if an appliance is really worth keeping in your kitchen:
1. Does it work? If it doesn't, it should be a no brainer to throw it out and buy a new one, unless you didn't miss using it, then rejoice in your new-found cupboard space! And if you have planned on fixing it for 6 months or more, you very likely never will fix it, so throw it out or fix it right now.
2. How often do you use it? As a general rule, if you use it less than twice a year, you shouldn't keep it. You probably know someone who wants it that will use it way more than you will and you can borrow it from them once a year. Then you don't have store it, it will get used often and they get to feel super nice by letting you borrow it when you want to use it!
3. Does it have multiple uses? We have a few one-use appliances, and as long as they get used a lot, I think that is just fine. I mentioned earlier that we have a yogurt maker that serves just one function: to make yogurt. However, I use it at least once a week, and it makes yogurt better than any other tool in my kitchen will, so it stays. On the other hand, having appliances that serve multiple functions is a great way to save space and money when you are purchasing an appliance. I hear great things about the Instapot, which apparently is a pressure cooker, crockpot, steamer, warmer and rice maker all wrapped up in one pot. That sounds pretty rad for one pot, and will save you boatloads of space and money that you would have spent on each of those appliances.
4. Are your appliances overlapping in their functions? Do you have two or three appliances that do the same sort of thing? Do you need all of them? Maybe you do, but maybe you don't. If not, keep the best one and donate the others immediately!
A kitchen full of guilt-inducing appliances that fill your cupboards to overflowing do not a happy kitchen make. Make your kitchen a easy place to work, and a place that has functioning appliances that make cooking pleasurable.
So now I have to ask, what appliances are necessary in your kitchen?