Janet's Notebook
Potato Ricer Earns Spot in Gadget Hall of Fame

Not Just for Potatoes Anymore...

This week's edition of the Notebook falls into the "Who Knew" category of kitchen gadgetry. I am constantly learning new tricks of the trade from you all, and a new favorite involves this little gadget: the potato ricer! Something of a cross between an over-sided garlic press and a Play-Doh toy, I first used a potato ricer to make simple mashed potatoes. The result was the creamiest, most delicious bowl of potatoes I've ever made! Try this technique out on Judy Sprague's Blue Ribbon Creamy Mashed Potatoes recipe.

Desiree Wilmoth of Kinsman, OH suggests using this handy-dandy implement to shape dough for her Blue Ribbon Ham Dumpling Soup. I tried it and it worked like a dream! I loved the uniformity of the dumplings and it sure made quick work of things.

Since my potato ricer epiphany, I've been looking for suggestions of other creative ways to put my new friend to use. Wisconsinite Brenda Vander Zanden uses hers to tackle one of my least favorite kitchen tasks: pressing spinach dry! It contains the mess and is far more effective than any other method I've tried. Similarly, I've been told that ricers are a great way to squeeze moisture from potato slices before deep-frying. No more splatters!

Thanks to you fine gadget gurus for your suggestions - I can't wait to hear more!

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Debbie Ucci - May 12, 2010
I boil my potatoes without peeling, then cut in half, put in my ricer and press. Very easy mashed potato. The no peeling is the best part!
Karen Baumgarten - May 8, 2010
Like Colleen, I also use my potato ricer for our lefsa, according to my late Grandma, this is the ONLY way to make the best lefsa!
Colleen Sowa - Apr 26, 2010
I make a potato flat bread called Lefse. I use the ricer to get the potatoes perfect for the Lefse. I also use the ricer at Christmas time to put thick frosting through to make Santa's beard on cookies and cakes.
NADINE REID - Apr 22, 2010
You can puree most foods with a good ricer. While a food processor does a great job, creating individual servings of pureed vegetables is easier with a ricer. Think baby food!
Jan Mullikin - Apr 22, 2010
I've had a ricer for years. So happy to hear of other uses for it--especially pressing the spinach dry. Keep those suggestions coming!