Questions on selecting, maintaining, and using cooking tools and equipment.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (5)

8
votes
1answer
1k views

How to tell the difference between stamped and forged knives

I know the difference between the process of making these knives, but if you saw two knives -- one stamped and one forged -- how do you tell the difference simply by looking at them? I guess you ...
8
votes
2answers
422 views

How to separate two jammed-together measuring cups?

I have two Pyrex measuring jugs (this type) that have got jammed together, one inside the other, I'm looking for suggestions on how to separate them again. I've already tried washing-up liquid ...
8
votes
2answers
4k views

Why do “saute pans” have straight sides?

I've read numerous times that when sauteing, the pan used usually has curved sides to allow one to toss the food. However, whenever I look at pans on shopping websites and such, the pan labeled "saute ...
8
votes
7answers
3k views

Advantages of using a non-glass teapot?

I currently have a borosilicate glass teapot. Glass seems to have the advantage that it will not absorb flavours and so can be used for all styles of tea. What are some of the advantages of using ...
8
votes
5answers
4k views

Are there significant differences between different brands/models of immersion blenders?

I'm thinking of purchasing a new immersion blender as a gift for somebody that has a very old one which is quite literally being held together with duct tape. I own a Sunbeam model which I believe is ...
8
votes
6answers
9k views

How do I keep the rice cooker from boiling over?

Possible Duplicate: Stopping water from bubbling over when cooking rice I am having epic rice-cooker failure here. I measure out the amount of rice suggested by the little cup thingy. I ...
8
votes
1answer
326 views

Why use a sandwich press instead of an oven or pan?

I often make hot sandwiches. Usually I just put butter on the outsides of the bread, then put them in the oven just until the cheese melts. I see other people just put the sandwiches in a pan with ...
8
votes
5answers
13k views

Does the Philips Air-fryer work as well as a standard deep-fryer?

I've seen commercial ads about the Philips Air-fryer: I'd like to hear answers from someone who actually tried it.. Does the outcome taste the same as if it was fried in a normal deep fryer? Does ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

French Rolling Pin Care and Maintenance

I just received a new french rolling pin as a gift. I washed it once in mild soap and water and made sure it dried quickly by wiping it down. It is now a little rougher than before washing. Should I ...
8
votes
1answer
154 views

Does a granite pestel need to be re-grooved?

I have a granite Mortar-Pestle, which I use to grind spices and other stuff. I got it 2nd hand and I've been using it for a 3-4 months. I have noticed that the small radial groves on the grinding ...
7
votes
12answers
2k views

Best Office Coffee Solution [closed]

What is the best coffee solution for a small office (about 10 people)? We are looking for something that is: Tasty Fast Easy We have fairly discriminating taste, although it doesn't have to be ...
7
votes
5answers
20k views

What is the best approach to cut carrot into thin strips?

So I went to Subway™ and saw that their carrots are cut into thin strips. I can never do this with any knives. So what is the best way to cut carrots into thin strips (like french fries)?
7
votes
4answers
3k views

Stainless Steel Pan — gray bottom. Why?

Just started using a stainless steel pan. First thing I cooked in it was bacon followed by some fried rice. Stuff stuck to it, but a quick soak and it all came off. However, once I cleaned and dried ...
7
votes
6answers
14k views

Do I need to season a stainless steel saute pan?

Okay, I received a nice stainless steel saute pan for Christmas and in looking around online there are people that say I need to season it. Most of the techniques I've seen involve oil and salt and ...
7
votes
9answers
9k views

What is the proper way to maintain a can opener?

I bought a hand crank can opener (Oxo) because of the good online feedback and only use the "shake" dry approach. It quickly developed rust in between the metal. If I invest the time and scrub, I can ...
7
votes
7answers
749 views

Are there benefits to using a lemon squeezer?

There are lots of products on the market to ease lemon squeezing. I've never used any of them. Are there any benefits to using one? What are some of the advantages and disadvantages of the different ...
7
votes
8answers
7k views

What kind of wok should I get?

I saw the question on the site about preparing a wok, but I'm curious what kind I should get. I have heard of stainless steel, carbon steel, aluminum, etc. Also, there's a non-stick variety. I'm new ...
7
votes
4answers
945 views

What to look for in a Stand Mixer?

I want to buy a stand mixer, a good one. Mainly for mixing dough, but also for mincing meat. I've seen that the KitchenAid has a mincing attachment. So, I've made a list of what to look for, and would ...
7
votes
5answers
874 views

What is this grilling utensil with two wire mesh panels?

I want to buy this cooking utensil but have no idea what it is called and where i can buy one from. I think it is mainly used on barbeques. Ive tried googling and had no luck. I'll try describing it ...
7
votes
6answers
4k views

Making airier icecream

I've been working on improving my home made ice-cream and was wondering if anyone knew how to get more air into the mix. The ice-cream is great right out of the maker, but once I put it in the ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

How can I clean my oven window?

My oven has a convenient window on it. It is very old and covered in soot. I tried what many recommendations say and used water and baking soda together, but it did not cut through the grime. Does ...
7
votes
7answers
717 views

How can I make sifting easier?

I'm at the point where I will completely avoid certain recipes simply because they require sifting and I find it incredibly tedious. Is there a better method? A better tool? A magic sifter?
7
votes
4answers
529 views

Is it okay to put a hot pan on a granite counter?

Is it okay to put a hot pan/pot on a granite counter? Or will it burn it? I don't know if there's a sealer on it.
7
votes
3answers
10k views

Cast iron, forged iron or carbon steel pan for induction?

I need a new pan for non-stick applications (eggs) and I want to try using a well-seasoned iron or carbon steel one. I use an induction stove. Normally, the arguments I hear in favor of carbon steel ...
7
votes
1answer
910 views

What is this kitchen tool - a handle, and coil of metal around a metal plate?

I'm at a loss for what these things are for - they came in a bag with some other things I bought at a thrift store.
7
votes
5answers
8k views

Why would I prefer carbon steel (rust prone) kitchen knife?

I've seen this question and obviously carbon steel (not stainless) knives look quite bad without extra care (picture from the linked to question) Now my question is - why face the trouble? Why ...
7
votes
2answers
21k views

How does a whipped cream charger work?

I recently got an iSi whipped cream container that charges with nitrous cannisters. I don't really understand how the thing works, which I think would help my use of the system. How does this actually ...
7
votes
4answers
2k views

Are electric knives used in foodservice?

After learning several months ago that immersion blenders and many other kitchen gadgets/appliances have foodservice equivalents that are usually much more powerful and durable than the consumer ...
7
votes
2answers
613 views

Do chillis impregnate a wooden chopping board?

After chopping away at a chilli earlier today (well, 10 minutes ago) I then went through my normal ritual of scrubbing my hands to remove what traces the chiles leave on my fingers. And it made me ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

Should a serious cook own a blowtorch?

And what does he/she principally use it for? I'm thinking of crème brûlée to start with and maybe blackening the skin of a pepper. Apart from that mine sits on the worktop pretty much unused. Oh ...
7
votes
4answers
14k views

Ceramic vs Stainless Steel in coffee mugs

My travel mug broke :( Looking at replacements, I find that most travel mugs with designs tend to be stainless steel, whereas my prior mug was ceramic. Is there a difference in heat retention between ...
7
votes
2answers
687 views

What cost-effective things can I do to help my knives stay sharp longer?

I'm a poor college student that doesn't know much about his knives, pots, and pans. Specifically is there anything that I can do to make my knives stay sharp longer and maintain them without spending ...
7
votes
4answers
18k views

Why does the grate of my charcoal grill keep rusting?

By the end of every summer it seems like the grate of my charcoal grill is rusty. Does anyone know how I can keep it from rusting and whether or not the rust is unhealthy?
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Pressure cooker rice quality vs high-end rice cooker

I'm considering buying a proper rice cooker, as we've eaten most of the non-stick coating of the cheap one. The forums rave about induction heating, Zojirushi, Tiger, Toshiba RC-18NMF with its ...
7
votes
1answer
596 views

What should I look for when buying a pasta roller?

I'm looking to buy a pasta roller but I have no experience with them at all. What things should I look for to make sure I get a good one? Can they be made of different materials? Are there ...
7
votes
1answer
144 views

Why did my lids seal?

This has never happened to me before! Last night I made Refrigerator Pickles using cucumbers and an ordinary vinegar, water, sugar brine. My intention was to make a couple jars for co-workers who ...
7
votes
2answers
268 views

Why does my Wonder Pot now bake unevenly?

I've been using a Wonder Pot for a year and a half, mainly making cake and the occasional bread. Recently my cakes have started baking unevenly, with one half of the pot completing the baking before ...
7
votes
3answers
185 views

What features should I consider when getting an ice cream or gelato machine?

Obviously, there's the amount that it can make in one batch, and there seem to be three basic types (ones you freeze the bowl ahead of time; ones you pack it with salt and ice, and ones that ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Overpressurizing a cream whipper?

This might be considered off-topic, but thought it was worth asking, as I have no idea where else to ask -- I'm trying to make something forcibly eject from a cake. I've done some testing with a can ...
7
votes
2answers
709 views

Do scalloped sides on a knife blade have any effect?

One of the first knives I was ever given was a Wusthof 7-inch Santoku. Over my years of use, I've never put much thought into the cut-outs along the side of the blade (which appear to be variously ...
7
votes
3answers
321 views

Spice rack/cupboard for kitchen with lots of spices?

My wife and I really enjoy cooking, so we have tons of spices. I understand it's best to keep them in the dark, so we thought we might like a spice cupboard. Probably 50 or so spices; they don't need ...
7
votes
2answers
5k views

cast iron pan rusting on bottom surface

I have a great cast iron skillet that I use frequently and also take superb care of. Until I noticed the bottom is coated in rust. I believe the high heat that I use from the range top cooked off all ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Can I repair a cake tin which has started to leak?

I have a cake tin (the sprung false bottom type) which, although the bottom seems to fit quite well, has started to leak when I pour cake mixture into it. Is there anything I can do to rescue the tin ...
7
votes
2answers
7k views

How to dry royal icing fast?

I'm going to lead a workshop for kids about decorating gingerbread cookies with royal icing. It will take place at a cafe, so I need the icing to be as dry as possible as fast as possible, otherwise ...
7
votes
3answers
4k views

What are frying pan ridges for?

I expect frying pans with raised ridges are for a few purposes such as adding "grill lines" to meats and keeping food out of grease somewhat as it collects. Why or when should I use a frying pan with ...
7
votes
3answers
431 views

How can I make sorbet without a recipe?

I would like to be able to make sorbet with whatever ingredients I have on hand without always looking up a recipe. I understand that it's important to get the correct balance of sugar, liquid, and ...
7
votes
1answer
404 views

Wok and electric hob - which ring to use?

I've a flat electric hob (the gets-very-hot type, not induction) upon which I cook. When using my wok (which is flat-bottomed) I place it on the largest ring, but obviously the pan only covers a ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

How can you pipe hot melted candy into free-form shapes?

I recently made free-form candy swirls out of chocolate-like coloured candy. When I got to the point of putting it into my disposable plastic piping bag, I had to wrap it in a tea-towel in order to ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

Does the airflow pattern in a hot air popcorn popper matter? / What should I look for in a popper?

I'm interested in purchasing a hot-air popcorn popper. I grew up with a Wear-Ever Popcorn Pumper, which holds the unpopped corn in a metal cup with angled slots for air on the sides (so that the corn ...
6
votes
8answers
1k views

How can I make coffee with a minimum of equipment and maintenance?

My household doesn't regularly drink coffee, but we occasionally want to provide coffee for our guests, or need to use coffee as an ingredient in other dishes. We do have a coffee maker (a "free" ...