A ruler? In the kitchen? I know, many of you probably think a ruler is one of the last tools you would need in a kitchen. But a ruler is just as essential to the serious chef as a kitchen scale or a sharp chef's knife (some even have rulers tattooed on their hands for easy reference).
We keep several rulers in the Test Kitchen at any given time, and I probably use one at least once every single time I test a recipe. Not only are they helpful -- if not essential -- in baking when measuring and cutting dough, they're also a must in the savory kitchen when you need to gauge the thickness and size of a fillet or steak, or want to have the perfect brunoise or macedoine for the composed salad or vegetable dish you're preparing.
Rulers are inexpensive and can be found at almost any store, as well as online. Depending on the material used, a ruler should set you back no more than $1 to $5. (A tattoo will cost substantially more, and I'd recommend going through a reputable -- and accurate -- artist).
If you have any kitchen tips or questions you'd like me to explore, leave a comment below or shoot me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.