I've got a bunch of grapes, with seeds. I need to seed them for a recipe. Cutting them in half and prying out the seeds with a paring knife makes me yearn for stringing beans. Any suggestions on how to get through this process faster?
If you just need the pulp (for pie, ice cream, jam, etc...) then cook them down and run them through a food strainer.
If you need them raw, or halved/skins on, then find a good audiobook...
Put the grapes on a plate - best if you do as many at one time as will fill the plate in one layer. Cover the plate with an identical plate turned upside down. Using a long knife cut between the plates to cut all the grapes in half at once. I use my thumb nail to scoop out the seeds, but the tip of a vegetable peeler will work better than a knife if your nails aren't long.
Here's how you do it:
Cut Grape in half lengthwise, either all the way through or just through to the last skin
Remove the seeds from each half with a serrated grapefruit spoon.
Note: Assembly line is most efficient - pull enough grapes off stem to fill a plate, cut all the grapes in half, then remove the seeds from each grape.
I'd say this might be a good time to invest in a cherry pitter, as I'd assume it'd work on grapes, too.
Some things to try for speed :
- crushing them, and seeing if the pots pop free (it works for olives).
- cut more than one at a time -- put four or five down on your work surface, place your hand over them, fingers up, and slice between your hand and counter with a sharp knife. (although, I've never done this for something with pits, so I don't know how much of a problem it might be)
And, when all else fails, buy some seedless grapes, and save the seeded ones for snacking.
update : I've since learned a safer method for option #2 : use lids from deli containers or other small items with raised lips (like the bottom of some earthenware plates). Place it lip-side up, fill with items to be cut in half, place a similar item on top, press down on the stack, and slice in between the two containment devices.
It's easiest with larger grapes, cut through the middle rather than lengthwise. The seeds tend to end up in one half and are easily removed with the tip of a paring knife. I find that the loss of the edible portion of the grape is minimized.
Squeeze grape to seperate pulp from skin and seperate. Bring pulp to boil. At some point pulp will release the seed. Then filter to seperate seed from pulp. Combine unseeded pulp and skins. Ready for pie etc. See Joy of Cooking ..old version.