How to Choose the Best Manual Meat Grinder for Your Kitchen?
Posted: Dec 19, 2017
Technological progress touched every aspect of our life. 30 years ago our grannies had no idea what great kitchen helpers contemporary housewives have at their disposal now. Paradoxically enough, a great number of know-hows are discovered every day, yet some good old handy equipment still occupies our shelves. A perfect example of it is a manual meat grinder being a good match to its electric analog.Choosing a good manual meat grinder
Choosing the best manual meat grinder takes time and proper thinking as the assortment of this useful kitchen equipment is really wide. So what factors should you consider before picking the one that will suit you the most? First things first, the basic difference between the manual meat grinders is material. I’m now going to give a quick review of three of them.
Stainless steel manual meat grinder. Usually, stainless steel is used for covering the parts of the grinder or the body itself. But sometimes you can find the one that is made entirely of this kind of metal, which makes the unit sturdy, robust and rust-proof. Still, keep in mind that frozen meat or hard bones should not be ground in there.
Aluminium manual meat grinder. This one is very light and handy. And that, I guess, is the key factor here.
Cast iron manual meat grinder. This unit is heavy enough. But due to this durable material, your meat grinder can serve you a lifetime. The only thing you need to do is to occasionally resharpen the knives with an abrasive stone or another tool available like alumina sandpaper or sharpeners that are inserted into the grinder’s body.Assembling the manual meat grinder
Assembling a manual meat grinder is the main key to ensure it works well. But even if you see this unit for the first time in your life, it will be easy as pie, just follow these few simple steps below.
First, you need the body of the grinder, which is the biggest part with three big tube-like holes in it. Pay your attention to the big rounded opening where you should insert an auger, the part which pushes meat to the star-knife.
Then goes a "star-knife" which is attached to the auger. Make sure the incurved side of the knife faces inside of the grinder, not outside. Otherwise, you will not be able to get high-quality output — fine meat texture.
The grinder plate comes next. I’m not going to describe it in details, as you won’t mix it with any other part. The plate is attached close to the flat side of the knife. If you take a closer look at the mincing plate you will see a small notch on one side. This notch should lock with a lug on the grinder’s body to prevent the plate from moving while you grind products.
Next step is attaching a large cover ring, often threaded. Screw the cover until tight and secure.
Finally, fasten the crank handle and we’re almost done. This part comes with two gaskets; one is applied to the back of the auger, while the other one is attached to the handle. Finish assembling the manual meat grinder by fixing the crank handle with a special eye screw. Now you need to fasten the unit on a flat sturdy base. Here we go!Some extra fancy details
Everybody understands what meat grinders are designed for, but few people know this unit can be more than just a meat grinder. With a variety of attachments that come together with this kitchen equipment, the user can easily grind meat, make the pastry, sausages, puree vegetables, shred cabbage or grate carrots for cooking something special for your family.Juice squeezer attachment
This small but useful attachment turns your meat grinder into a juice squeezer. But still keep in mind that this is not the meat grinder’s primary function, therefore it will probably not perform as good as a juice squeezer itself. Very often with this attachment, you will more likely get wet juicy pulp, though it’s not for sure a con after all.Grater attachment
It comes in handy when you need to grate products quickly. It usually looks like cylindrical attachment with small holes like those on a manual grater. Sometimes a meat grinder comes even with two or three various sizes of them.Kibbe attachment
Most modern manual meat grinders come with kibbe attachment, yet very often it is left untouched by the user. With this funnel-like attachment, you can easily make empty meat sausages, that can be stuffed with your favorite ingredients and then fried. If you want to cook something delicious for your family, why not try this one as a helper?Mincing plates
This is a multi-purpose attachment through which meat is pushed. Each meat grinder has one or more of these in a package, varying in hole sizes and diameter. They are used to grind meat, chicken, and vegetables.Shredding attachment
This attachment allows you cutting products into slices. It reminds a small drum inserted into the meat grinder’s body instead of the auger.Pastry shaping attachment
This is a plastic or metal plate shaping pastry for making different cookies. The plate itself has three to four holes, through which pastry is pushed and formed the way you need it to be.
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