Tramontina 3-qt. Cast Iron Covered Braiser, Green Enamel exterior, Tan interior
Veganomicon said these rule because you can take them from stove to oven to table. Who am I to disagree? Do not be fooled by its friendly gradient green enamel. This mother is life-threatening. Its gravity surprised the poor cashier and she nearly dropped it (which would probably only wreck the floor and anything else in its path without sustaining damage itself). Do not let small children attempt to carry this. It was on sale in my local store for $25.
Chicago Cutlery 8" Santoku Knife
It says it's $20 online, but I could have sworn I only paid a little over $10. Mine is a little different; it doesn't have those notches (what are those good for, anyway?) Well, hopefully I'm alone here but I had NO IDEA what I was missing out with using sharp knives. It does feel and look a bit "cheap" compared to whatever the Mercedes of knives might be, but I can't really imagine those $150 jobbies being THAT much better. Perhaps they're prettier, stand wear better, have a more esoteric sounding brand? Whatever.