Cool & Collected: Shola Olunloyo

Shola Olunloyo
Profession:
Private chef and food blogger
NEIGHBORHOOD: West Philadelphia
COLLECTION: Kitchen tools and spices

There is nothing wasted, nothing unused and nothing out of place in Shola Olunloyo’s kitchen collection. Each Japanese knife, each French pot, each German blender, each Indian spice has a designated position in the chef’s pristine workspace. After stints at Deux Cheminées and Le Bec-Fin, Shola began accumulating his trade’s tools in his incredibly organized home kitchen. “It’s important for me to see everything that I’m working with — all the plate ware arranged neatly, all the spices on one rack. It’s easy to be inspired by looking at things.”

Thermomix
“The Thermomix is a blender from Germany that brings a whole new level of texture to cooking because it cooks while it blends. You can make soup in it, and celery or herb purees that turn out so green because they keep their chlorophyll.”

Hors D’Oeuvre Tray

“Ian Pappajohn custom made this hors d’oeuvre tray to match the dining table that he also made for me.”

Pots
“The two kinds of pots I use the most are Sitram and Mauviel, both French, made with a copper core lined with stainless steel.”

Mandoline
“I recommend all chefs have a Japanese mandoline. It costs about $20 — the French one is $100 — and you can throw it in the dishwasher. It comes with all these attachments — it’s recommended that beginners use the guard.”

Cavatelli Maker
“Fante’s is good for basic Italian tools … [such as] an old-school Italian tool for making pasta plaques and gnocchi paddles.”

Knives
“The first thing you know you need as a chef: really good knives. Korin in TriBeCa is where most East Coast chefs go to buy good knives and sharpening stones. These are L.O. Shen. I store them in a drawer where they’re not stacked, they’re lined up, and [during transportation] in a plastic sleeve that prevents their edges from chipping.”