When it comes to food, I can't resist anything that's in mini form. The same, however, can't be said for kitchen items: miniature tartlet, pie, and saucepans have always seemed too novel and not functional enough for my kitchen. That said, I've developed a recent obsession with mini cast-iron pots after seeing a number of them at the Aspen Food & Wine tents. They're far more versatile than they let on, and I've just purchased my first. Here are a few things I plan to do with it:

  • Store seasonings for mise en place while cooking.
  • Use as an attractive way to offer guests high-quality finishing salts at the dinner table.
  • Make egg dishes for one. Single-serving eggs in purgatory, anybody?
  • Grilling outdoors? Place it directly over the grates to create quick drizzling sauces.

If you own any mini servingware or cookware, how do you put it to good use?