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15

There are at least three potential downsides: wood is quite light, so you will not get the benefit of added weight of the pestle for crushing; many wooden mortars have a smooth texture, which will not aid in the grinding as much as, e.g., a coarse ceramic mortar; and wood is porous—increasingly so as it dries over time—so it may have the tendency to pick ...


7

I think you might find that such a pestle and mortar is only used for crushing herbs that are frequently used (every day) in asian cookery, like cilantro or Kaffir lime leaves. It is going to be difficult to clean, and that wood stain might come out into the food - whatever the stain is. It might not even be intended for food use - perhaps you should have ...


7

Neither. The traditional instrument for making guacamole, and other Mexican mashed and ground preparations, is the mocaljete, which is similar to a mortar & pestle, but made with a shorter pestle and out of black basalt, a rough volcanic stone: A regular mortar and pestle out of ceramic or granite will not work for a fat, squishy fruit like avocado; ...


7

Porcelain or ceramic ones are: lighter You'll have to grab them with one hand to use them. easier to break cheaper This is related with the last point. glazed Porcelain ones don't need to be so, but ceramic ones are. It gives them a smoother surface, but some parts of the shell might husk off. It is not affected by acids (marble mortars will), and ...


6

That sort of grinding only works with seeds and such. Chiles are too fibrous. I use a cuisinart mini mate chopper/grinder for all my spice milling needs. There's a dull side to the blade for grinding stuff like peppercorns, and a sharp side for stuff like chiles. About the only thing my mortar and pestle ever gets used for is grinding kosher salt to a ...


5

Just to clarify, the mortar is the bowl and the pestle is the rod. I haven't ever seen a grooved pestle, but the grooves on a mortar will wear off with use. The grooves are useful for holding seeds and the like in place while grinding, but they are not strictly necessary. Spices can actually be ground finer in a smooth mortar than they can with a grooved one ...


5

You can do this, but it's a fair amount of work. First, you want to toast the peppers before grinding. This makes them easier to grind, and also deepens the flavor. Second, chopping them up before starting to grind doesn't hurt. Third, throw in a handful of coarse salt if there's going to be salt later on in your recipe. It'll help you grind them up. ...


2

If a paste is an acceptable end product (as brought out in comments), then the mortar and pestle will work fine. I believe in toasting most peppers first; straight on the flame, in a dry skillet, or under a broiler all work. Bring a pot of water with a lid to a boil, salt as for pasta. Prep your peppers by washing and throwing away the stems. Tear the flesh ...


1

When it comes to equipment, I consider Cook's Illustrated to be the Consumer Reports of cooking and refer to them. They recommend granite, or at least the one they recommend is granite. The Cilio (Frieling) Goliath. I'll refer you to their January 2012 edition to find their commentary about mortars and their full review (available at most libraries). You can ...



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