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

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8answers
12k views

Do I need a bread maker?

I'd like to try my hand at baking my own bread. Do I need a bread maker to get decent bread? Are there any advantages to using a bread maker vs. my normal oven?
8
votes
4answers
456 views

Mason jar stuck inside another

I need help! I just finished making sauerkraut and was using a mason jar inside of a larger mason jar to weigh down the cabbage. Now, I can't get the inner mason jar out. I've tried soap around the ...
8
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9answers
40k views

What can you do with an infrared thermometer?

Infrared thermometers have plummeted in price in recent years, and are now inexpensive gadgets for the home cook, not to mention the pros. What are the primary uses of an infrared thermometer in the ...
8
votes
4answers
607 views

Removing ramekins from a bain marie

So you've just cooked your creme caramels in a water bath/bain marie/double boiler with only about a quarter of the ramekin appearing above water level. I've tried the follow methods in the past and ...
8
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9answers
11k 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 ...
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8answers
8k 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 ...
8
votes
3answers
6k views

Pros and Cons of cream whippers?

I did not know pressurized cream whippers existed until just seeing a reference to one, which led me to do a Google search. I own a manual cream whipper, which I rarely use, because it is exceedingly ...
8
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2answers
3k views

Scratched Stainless Steel

I have a set of stainless steel pans that I absolutely love, and my 12" frying pan has received LOTS of use since I bought it. This is my first ever stainless steel pan and I'm pretty aware of all the ...
8
votes
2answers
741 views

Digital meat thermometer that does not cause juice losses

Sometimes when I'm trying a new cooking method that uses different cooking temperatures compared to what I use normally, I find it difficult to estimate when my roast/meat is done. Digital meat ...
8
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4answers
2k 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 ...
8
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3answers
14k 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 ...
8
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2answers
3k views

Does using a larger slow cooker than called for by the recipe make a difference?

I have a recipe that specifically calls for a 4-quart slow cooker, however the slow cooker that I own is a 6-quart. Will using a 6-quart slow cooker make a difference, or does it not matter?
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2answers
511 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
1answer
5k views

Why does chilled equipment help when whipping cream?

Why a does chilled mixer bowl help when making whipped cream? Does it have any effect on how long the cream stays whipped?
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
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
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7answers
4k 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
1answer
3k 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 ...
8
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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
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6answers
13k 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
437 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
16k 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
1answer
155 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
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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
23k 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)?
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4answers
4k 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
4answers
852 views

How to keep dust and cat hair off cast iron pan?

I live with three long haired cats that shed in the winter, and my place gets dusty at times too. I have a fairly new cast iron skillet that I use once every one or two days. I dont have any shelves ...
7
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6answers
19k 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
3answers
11k views

Induction unit makes buzzing sound

I was fed up with the low quality electric hobs which are installed in my 1 meter wide "kitchen" (I forgot a crepe on the smaller one on the highest setting, and 25 min later it wasn't even browned, ...
7
votes
7answers
888 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
4answers
1k 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
955 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
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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
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3answers
15k views

What do you need for Chinese style Hotpot at home?

I love going to hotpot at the restaurant. How can I do it at home? What sort of equipment do I need?
7
votes
4answers
7k 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
7answers
859 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
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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
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3answers
13k views

What type of frying pan does not warp?

I have a glass smooth-top stove. Every large frying pan that I have bought so far has almost immediately warped so that the bottom is no longer flat. They all end up concave -- like a wok but less ...
7
votes
6answers
10k views

How should I clean my metal mesh tea strainer?

I have one of these teeli tea strainers, and it's wonderful. It's a very fine metal mesh basket with plastic frame. I've had it for perhaps 10+ years and it's still working well after brewing ...
7
votes
1answer
1k 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
2answers
319 views

Ways to avoid headaches while cooking [closed]

I have recently started to learn how to cook. Whenever I am trying to make a chapati or to cook a vegetable, I start experiencing an acute headache, most likely because of the steam or maybe the flame ...
7
votes
2answers
670 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
2answers
747 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
21k 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
2answers
153 views

Is there an easy way to tell if a pan/pot is oven-safe?

I have a couple of old pots and pans laying around in the house and unfortunately I don't have the original box. Is there an easy way to tell if they are safe to use in the oven? Like for stainless ...
7
votes
4answers
3k views

How does a typical electric rice cooker work?

I have a cheap $15 rice cooker from my undergrad days (link). It has a metal pad on the bottom attached to a spring, a "Cook" switch (feels like a toaster lever), a "Cooking" light and a "Warm" light. ...
7
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5answers
24k 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
1answer
730 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
7k views

How do you correctly use a meat thermometer?

I have two meat thermometers. I bought a second one because I thought the first one was resulting in overcooked meat, however the new one is doing the same! They are both standard metal prong 'analog ...