Grater, Zesters & Peelers

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What are Zesters and Graters Used For?

The tasks of grating, zesting, and peeling are difficult to imagine without the use of their corresponding utensils. Relying merely on a knife to complete these tasks is certainly a hassle. This is why anyone who spends even minimal time in the kitchen has at least one of each in their kitchen drawers. Graters and zesters fall into one of these two categories: handheld or standalone. Standing graters are also known as box graters since they most commonly come with four sides, resembling a box. However, standing graters are available with anywhere from two or six sides, varying in the type of functions they can each carry out with the structure of the bladed slots. 

Handheld graters are ideal for when you need to grate ingredients immediately over a dish. For example, cheese graters are great for sprinkling shreds of parmesan or the cheese of your choice over pasta. The use of handheld graters doesn’t stop at savory foods. They can be used as a garnishing tool for grating sweet ingredients such as chocolate over desserts. Overall, graters are quite versatile in nature and come in handy when you least expect them. 

The Difference Between Zesters and Graters

Although zesters look almost identical to graters, at first sight, their function in the kitchen is entirely different. Zesters get their name because they are used for arguably one key function and that is extracting the zest of citruses. They are also known as Microplane zesters. The outer layer of lemons, limes, and oranges adds immense flavor to dishes with even a sprinkle but it is also quite thin. For this reason, the larger holes of a grater would simply cut into the bitter, white ring inside. Zesters are specifically produced with relatively raspy holes that will shave off the zest of the citruses, leaving you enough time to realize if you are zesting too far into the peel. It also produces tiny shavings of the citrus peel which allows it to easily mix into cake batters or other dishes without creating large clunks, as you would get if you attempted to execute the same function with a knife. Overall, zesters carry out one specific function in the kitchen but it is one that cannot be replaced with any other utensil. 

Why Peelers Are a Must-have Tool in Your Kitchen?

Peelers are the last kitchen utensils of this category that are must-haves. You’ll find cooks who prefer to use a sharp paring knife to peel their vegetables or fruits, but once you use an outstanding peeler, there’s no going back. How do you pick out the best peeler? Look for peelers that have a swiveled blade as this will allow much more flexibility when grating around the curves of potatoes or other round vegetables. Also, a small curve at the tip of the peeler may seem like a design, but it is actually a digger tool specifically for carving out blemishes in the fruit or vegetable with ease.