Community Message Boards
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 30 of 36

Thread: Do I need a potato ricer?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2001
    Location
    Buffalo, MN, USA
    Posts
    199

    Do I need a potato ricer?

    I was watching Alton Brown make mashed potatoes on the FN last week and he used a potato ricer to smoosh up his cooked potatoes. The finished product looked perfect (more perfect than mine usually do ) I'm tempted to pick up a ricer, but I have so many specialized gadgets I hate to add one more that doesn't have multiple uses. If you have a potato ricer, what do you use it for other than potatoes?
    Thanks!
    And Happy Thanksgiving!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    In my heaven on earth
    Posts
    13,237
    I use it for both white and sweet potatoes and to squeeze spinach dry for quiche. They're cheap and they do make the best mashers.


    "Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself" ~ George Bernard Shaw


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Emeryville, CA
    Posts
    4,353
    Quote Originally Posted by Robyn1007 View Post
    I use it for both white and sweet potatoes and to squeeze spinach dry for quiche. They're cheap and they do make the best mashers.
    Everything she said!
    Joe

    Pictures and recipes of our Cooking and Baking!
    http://desertculinary.blogspot.com/

    Strength is the capacity to break a chocolate bar into four pieces with your bare hands - and then eat just one of the pieces. ~Judith Viorst

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    2,198
    Smoosh? I totally made that word up years ago while making grilled cheese sandwiches.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    San Francisco
    Posts
    19,680
    Ditto Robyn/Joe. I'm not a fan of "unitaskers" (As AB himself would say) but IMO a ricer is the best way to make fluffy mashed potatoes (hate the lumpy/gluey ones that were in vogue for a while). Of course, a food mill would be at least as good, but that's another "thing" to find a place for - and more expensive.
    Happiness is not a goal, it is a byproduct. - Eleanor Roosevelt

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Scituate, MA
    Posts
    771
    Well I have had this same question and am thinking of purchasing. While DH is usually in charge of the mashed and would likely see no need for the ricer, the new gnocchi recipe from CI calls for a ricer so I may take the plunge (and i have a credit at Sur La Table that is burning a hole in my wallet…)
    Sarah

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    San Francisco
    Posts
    19,680
    That's a great use for a ricer! Consistent, light texture - didn't even think of it. I bought mine 7 years ago at Williams-Sonoma for about $15. I know you can pay more and less, but I've been happy with mine.
    Happiness is not a goal, it is a byproduct. - Eleanor Roosevelt

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Oklahoma
    Posts
    7,946
    I bought one last year and love it. Even if I used it solely for the use of mashing potatoes, it does its job so well that it justifies its existence in my kitchen. It's one of the few ways you can rest assured knowing that your mashed potatoes have no lumps in them without whipping them into a paste.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    earth
    Posts
    3,418
    I don't do mashed potatoes often, but when I do the hand masher or portable mixer both do a great job. I have a food mill, but have never used it for potatoes.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    San Francisco
    Posts
    19,680
    Quote Originally Posted by charley View Post
    I don't do mashed potatoes often, but when I do the hand masher or portable mixer both do a great job. I have a food mill, but have never used it for potatoes.
    My mom, who in fact hated cooking, always mashed first with the hand masher and then added the hot milk and whipped up with the hand mixer. Her theory was that the masher killed the lumps and the hand mixer made 'em fluffy. Her mashed potatoes were one of the few things she felt she did well, and was crushed when my sister announced that it was all about LUMPY potatoes
    Happiness is not a goal, it is a byproduct. - Eleanor Roosevelt

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    earth
    Posts
    3,418
    Quote Originally Posted by Canice View Post
    My mom, who in fact hated cooking, always mashed first with the hand masher and then added the hot milk and whipped up with the hand mixer. Her theory was that the masher killed the lumps and the hand mixer made 'em fluffy. Her mashed potatoes were one of the few things she felt she did well, and was crushed when my sister announced that it was all about LUMPY potatoes

    I actually prefer lumpy too, but that's partly the lazy in me talking. Much quicker to hand mash. I'd never take the time to rice potatoes. Have never had gluey potatoes using the hand mixer. That must come from over-mixing.

  12. #12

    Unpeeled Potatoes

    You can't use the ricer if you don't peel your potatoes, can you??

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Oklahoma
    Posts
    7,946
    Quote Originally Posted by Tutalady View Post
    You can't use the ricer if you don't peel your potatoes, can you??
    You don't need to peel.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    San Francisco
    Posts
    19,680
    You boil the potatoes skin-on? Is that thin-skinned ones like Yukon Gold, or russets too?
    Happiness is not a goal, it is a byproduct. - Eleanor Roosevelt

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    In my heaven on earth
    Posts
    13,237
    Quote Originally Posted by Canice View Post
    You boil the potatoes skin-on? Is that thin-skinned ones like Yukon Gold, or russets too?
    Sure, why not?


    "Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself" ~ George Bernard Shaw


  16. #16
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    San Francisco
    Posts
    19,680
    I never knew any other way than to peel them first (for smooth texture), so it didn't occur to me not to. Does the ricer work as food mill does and hold the peels of a russet back? Just curious.
    Happiness is not a goal, it is a byproduct. - Eleanor Roosevelt

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Oklahoma
    Posts
    7,946
    IMHO, boiling with the peels on and not having to peel the potatoes is one of the advantages of a ricer. I cut large potatoes into thirds and after boiling I put the cut side of the potato facing down to make it a little easier for the potato to squeeze through the ricer (this is not totally necessary). I keep a fork handy to easily remove the peel from the bottom of the ricer before adding the next batch of potatoes.

    Often I will add a little salt, pepper, and butter to the removed peels and eat them while preparing the mashed potatoes. They have some potato "meat' residue left on them and this makes for a tasty snack using something that is usually thrown away.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    In my heaven on earth
    Posts
    13,237
    Quote Originally Posted by Canice View Post
    I never knew any other way than to peel them first (for smooth texture), so it didn't occur to me not to. Does the ricer work as food mill does and hold the peels of a russet back? Just curious.
    Just goes to show you that we all have different views. It never occurred to me not to boil with the skins. I do essentially what Gumbeaux does.


    "Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself" ~ George Bernard Shaw


  19. #19
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    earth
    Posts
    3,418
    It's funny how we view things differently. I only peel when I do mashed with a mixer. If it's mashed by hand I leave the skins on. Ricing with peels sounds like a hassle. I'd peel first.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Oklahoma
    Posts
    7,946
    Quote Originally Posted by charley View Post
    Ricing with peels sounds like a hassle. I'd peel first.
    It's not with my ricer. I've done it both ways. Of course, that's using my ricer. I can't say what the results would be using a different brand of ricer.

  21. #21
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    In my heaven on earth
    Posts
    13,237
    Quote Originally Posted by charley View Post
    It's funny how we view things differently. I only peel when I do mashed with a mixer. If it's mashed by hand I leave the skins on. Ricing with peels sounds like a hassle. I'd peel first.
    I guess I don't understand how it would be more of a hassle than peeling?


    "Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself" ~ George Bernard Shaw


  22. #22
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Illinois
    Posts
    1,560
    Now you all have talked me into getting one. Sure sounds like it does a better job than my regular ole masher.

  23. #23
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    San Francisco
    Posts
    19,680
    Sounds like we're due for a new "kitchen hassles" thread .
    I've come to find that I am in the minority (not just on the BB, but in the wider world) in that I actually like prep work and am not put off by stuff other people hate, such as peeling bn squash, deveining shrimp, chopping onions, etc. I think that's one of the reasons I'm never drawn to soups or casseroles that are throw-together dishes: I don't mind the work, and enjoy the process! (I also cook for one and am not pressed for time. Change one or both of those, and I could be humming a different tune.)
    Happiness is not a goal, it is a byproduct. - Eleanor Roosevelt

  24. #24
    I got my ricer at Williams Sonoma about 5 years ago for $20. I don't know if they still carry that model. It was all stainless steel. It works great!

    I usually peel my potatoes. Occasionally, I leave the peels on red potatoes, but in that case I use the hand masher (not sure why).

    I love both my ricer and my hand masher, although the ricer definitely does a better job of making smooth mashed potatoes.

  25. #25
    Join Date
    Sep 2000
    Location
    redding, ca usa
    Posts
    4,654
    DH likes lumpy potatoes so I use the old fashion masher, so no ricer here.

    But I wanted to post this as I was just looking through my Williams Sonoma catalog and saw this adjustable ricer. Here is the link.

    http://www.williams-sonoma.com/produ...day-%20copy-_-

  26. #26
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    2,047
    Going in the opposite direction:
    For as long as I can remember my big potato ricer was a necessity for mashed potatoes. Then I realized that with Idaho potatoes I hadn't used a ricer for years and banished the old gadget to our basement. I always peel the potatoes and then proceed just like Canice's mom.
    Last edited by swedish cook; 11-27-2011 at 03:58 PM.
    We give dogs time we can spare, space we can spare and love we can spare. And in return, dogs give us their all. It's the best deal man has ever made.
    -M. Acklam

  27. #27
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    The Great White North
    Posts
    1,535
    I only occasionally use my ricer for mashed potatoes - when mashing for just the 2 of us the slightly bent old masher does just as good a job, likely do to it's small square-holed shape. For a lot of taters the ricer is easier and results in fewer lumps.
    Like Robyn I also use the ricer for squeezing spinach; it also is good for squeezing shredded cucumber when making a delicious and thick tzatziki, thicker than when I squeeze by hand.
    Does anybody else squeeze other veggies/fruits with their ricer?
    I made gnocchi last week using baked potatoes and riced them after removing just the thin brown outer skin on them - I left the thicker, slightly darkened layer under the skin on but it is a pain to rice, but I wanted as much of it as I could save as it's got lots of "baked" flavour. Awesome gnocchi!

    Got mine for < $10 at Ikea.
    Cheers! Andy

  28. #28
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    Northern VA
    Posts
    456
    I have a food mill that I use every year when I make and can apple sauce and apple butter. With all the attention potato ricers seem to be getting lately, I thought I'd try the food mill for my latest batch of mashed potatoes (I usually hand mash or whip), and I must say, they were probably the best potatoes I have ever made. Very fluffly. Now, I probably won't be getting it out for quick, weeknight mashed potatoes all the time, but it didn't really take that much more time. I think getting a ricer would be worth it, unless you are really short on kitchen space. At least I know my food mill will get some good use over the years.

  29. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by Gumbeaux View Post
    I bought one last year and love it. Even if I used it solely for the use of mashing potatoes, it does its job so well that it justifies its existence in my kitchen. It's one of the few ways you can rest assured knowing that your mashed potatoes have no lumps in them without whipping them into a paste.
    Quote Originally Posted by Gumbeaux View Post
    You don't need to peel.
    Quote Originally Posted by Gumbeaux View Post
    IMHO, boiling with the peels on and not having to peel the potatoes is one of the advantages of a ricer. I cut large potatoes into thirds and after boiling I put the cut side of the potato facing down to make it a little easier for the potato to squeeze through the ricer (this is not totally necessary). I keep a fork handy to easily remove the peel from the bottom of the ricer before adding the next batch of potatoes.

    Often I will add a little salt, pepper, and butter to the removed peels and eat them while preparing the mashed potatoes. They have some potato "meat' residue left on them and this makes for a tasty snack using something that is usually thrown away.
    Quote Originally Posted by Gumbeaux View Post
    It's not with my ricer. I've done it both ways. Of course, that's using my ricer. I can't say what the results would be using a different brand of ricer.
    Care to share which ricer you have? I've been on the fence about buying one, and this one sounds great.

    I could see those peels going into the oven to crisp up a bit too. Nice snack.

  30. #30
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Oklahoma
    Posts
    7,946
    Quote Originally Posted by SDCook56 View Post
    Care to share which ricer you have? I've been on the fence about buying one, and this one sounds great.

    I could see those peels going into the oven to crisp up a bit too. Nice snack.
    I'll look and see if I can find out. I had it on my Amazon wish list a few years ago and somebody in the family purchased it for me. It's all metal without any plastic trim parts. Amazon has lots of them. I think this is the one I have. You can get one like this cheaper, but since I didn't pay for it.....

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •