You Can Borrow Pasta Machines, Cookbooks and Kitchen Utensils for Cheap at Carlton Kitchen Library
So you can level-up your next dinner party — with homemade ice cream, bread and pasta — without buying any fancy new gear.
Want to up your culinary game, but don't want to shell out on a whole heap of exxy kitchen gear? Well, the newly hatched Carlton Kitchen Library has your back. The volunteer-run hub operates like a regular library, only, instead of books, it's loaning out a broad catalogue of kitchen utensils, appliances, bakeware and glassware. And all those cool culinary gadgets you've been adding to cart, but hesitant to buy? There's plenty of them here, too — from slow-cookers to pasta machines and deep fryers.
Headed up by food security not-for-profit Cultivating Community, the Kitchen Library hopes to encourage locals in their home cooking endeavours, while also saving them from dropping money on one-off purchases and racking up more stuff for landfill.
It's a big win for new residents and those moving into their first homes who haven't had the funds or time to set up their own kitchen. An adult yearly membership will set you back just $40 — it's $20 for concession card holders and $50 for businesses — with proceeds used to maintain the library, beef up the equipment inventory and fund a program of community workshops.
In the library, you'll find bamboo steamers, blenders, baking trays, bowls, flour sifters, ice cream machines and even event kits stocked with plates, platters and glasses from $20 (for those keen to keep their next party or celebration low-waste). And there are plenty of cookbooks to borrow, too, if you're looking for dinner party inspo. You can suss out the full inventory over here.
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Did you know we also have HEAPS of cookbooks?! These are available to anyone (you don’t need to be a member) and can be loaned for as long as you need... or if you really love one it’s yours to keep! We’ve found that everyone has cookbooks they are willing to donate so we’re happy to keep our bookshelves open to all! Come past and have a squiz! We open tomorrow 9:30-12:30!
Members are allowed to check out five items at a time, to keep and use for two weeks. And if there are still a few recipes to tick off your list when that due date rolls around, borrowed items can even be renewed one at a time. Obviously, you'll also need to make sure loans are nice and clean upon giving them back.
The team is always on the look-out for new volunteers to help run the library and they'll happily take donations of pre-loved kitchen gear, as long as it's in good nick. Before you take in your pre-loved utensils, check out the library's wishlist.
Find Carlton Kitchen Library at 480 Lygon Street, Carlton. It's open from 3–6pm Tuesday and 9.30am–12.30pm Friday.
Images: Cassandra Hogan and Reusable Nation
Published on February 03, 2020 by Libby Curran