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Subject: Mandoline for scalloped potatoes?
Newsgroups: rec.food.cooking

============================

From: karenmgonzalez[at]hotmail.com (Karen Gonzalez)
Date: 12 Feb 2004 05:14:52 -0800
--------
Hi everybody,

I'd like to find an easy way to slice potatoes for scalloped potatoes
(about 1/8" thin). I have a mini food processor, and I need to cut the
potatoes before they can fit in the chute and the potatoes don't look
as pretty anymore (I don't mind doing this for apple pie, but
scalloped potatoes look so nice when cut nicely!). They also come out
a bit thinner than they need to. I don't want to spend a fortune and I
have very little room left in my kitchen (I live in an apartment). Any
suggestions on mandolines or other gadgets? I'll appreciate names of
brands and stores :)

Bed Bath and Beyond has 2 types of mandolines in their website:
"ZylissŪ Safety Rail-Guided Mandoline Vegetable and Fruit Slicer" for
$49.99 and "V-Plus Mandoline Slicer" for $29.99. Has anyone use any of
these for scalloped potatoes? Are they safe to use? Would potatoes
come out to thin? Is the Zyliss worth the extra $20?

Thanks a lot!
Karen

============================

From: MEow <nikittariber[at]yahoo.se>
Date: Thu, 12 Feb 2004 14:34:02 +0100
--------
I have a Zyliss mandoline and am very pleased with it. It's not the same
kind, it's a gourmet something, but it's safe enough for me despite the
mild chronic tremors I'm born with; so if it's safe for me to use, I
imagine their mandolines to be safe enough for you to use too, unless
you have a bigger disability than me.

============================

From: Frogleg <frogleg[at]nowhere.com>
Date: Thu, 12 Feb 2004 14:26:26 GMT
--------
I have what appears to be identical to:

<a href="http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00004VVK2/?tag=bigspud-20">http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00004VVK2/</a>

Having seen 'manuals for use' of $160 mandolines, I think a certain
amount of dexterity/practice is necessary for all sorts. Mine has 3
little (1 reversable) triangular inserts for various slicing
thicknesses, and does very nice about  1/8" and 3/8" julienne. Use the
pusher! All these suckers are *very* sharp and go through fingers just
as easily as carrots! I'm also very cautious when (hand) washing. 

As for storage, mine lives on a windowsill along with my box grater. 

============================

From: blake murphy <blakem[at]ix.netcom.com>
Date: Sat, 14 Feb 2004 02:56:15 GMT
--------
Frogleg wrote:
>As for storage, mine lives on a windowsill along with my box grater. 

a good place for it.  i ignored my grater in favor of the food
processor, but i'm coming back to it.

============================

From: Frogleg <frogleg[at]nowhere.com>
Date: Sat, 14 Feb 2004 12:03:49 GMT
--------
blake murphy wrote:
>a good place for it.  i ignored my grater in favor of the food
>processor, but i'm coming back to it.

I use the box grater all the time, being fond of cheese in everything
except fudge. Years ago I had a dime-store one I must have spent
(total) *hours* scrubbing and cleaning. In a Flash of Brilliance, I
suddenly  realized there were stainless models available. Nice to have
an 'appliance' that requires no electricity, is easy to clean, has
never been sharpened or repaired, and cost (amortized so far) about 10
cents per year of use.   However, for large quantities or multiple
similar chores, I use the FP. My record utilization was a quiche: I
mixed the pastry dough and prepared the shell. Then sliced onions and
mushrooms. Grated cheese. Then mixed the egg-milk stuff. All
operations without any need for cleaning in between. Well worth
getting the critter out of the cupboard, and doing the final
washing-up.

============================

From: Mr. Wizard <spacedog[at]yahoo.com>
Date: Thu, 12 Feb 2004 15:14:26 GMT
--------
Karen Gonzalez wrote:
> I'd like to find an easy way to slice potatoes for scalloped potatoes
> (about 1/8" thin).

> Bed Bath and Beyond has 2 types of mandolines in their website:
> "ZylissŪ Safety Rail-Guided Mandoline Vegetable and Fruit Slicer" for
> $49.99 and "V-Plus Mandoline Slicer" for $29.99. Has anyone use any of
> these for scalloped potatoes? Are they safe to use? Would potatoes
> come out to thin? Is the Zyliss worth the extra $20?

The Zyliss is just super. It's so easy to change cutters.
Yes it is worth the extra $20.00

============================

From: Boron Elgar <boron_elgarspamola[at]hotmail.com>
Date: Thu, 12 Feb 2004 11:46:54 -0500
--------
Karen Gonzalez wrote:
>I'd like to find an easy way to slice potatoes for scalloped potatoes
>(about 1/8" thin).

Though I cannot tell you anything about the specific mandolines you
mention, I have a plastic one from Italy that cost me under $10. It is
all plastic except for the blade &amp; prongs on the food holder. I used
it 3 days ago for scalloped potatoes. It took no more than 5 minutes
for 5 lbs &amp; that including layering them as I went.

Mine slices thin, but that is the exactly the way I like it. I am not
sure how thick or thin you prefer your to be cut.

And it all goes into the dishwasher.

============================

From: Janet Bostwick <nospam[at]cableone.net>
Date: Thu, 12 Feb 2004 11:18:57 -0700
--------
Karen Gonzalez wrote:
> I'd like to find an easy way to slice potatoes for scalloped potatoes
> (about 1/8" thin).

The V-Slicer that I purchased  over 10 years ago has a reversible panel that
adjusts all cutting/slicing to either thick or thin.

============================

From: Stark Raven <sraven[at]att.net>
Date: Fri, 13 Feb 2004 13:14:31 GMT
--------
Janet Bostwick wrote:
> The V-Slicer that I purchased  over 10 years ago has a reversible panel that
> adjusts all cutting/slicing to either thick or thin.
 
Mine too, but thick is too thick and thin, too thin. I mean
unbelievably thin.  So for tweeners I usually resort to knife and the
V-Slicer remains in its box.

============================

From: Melba's Jammin' <barbschaller[at]earthblink.net>
Date: Thu, 12 Feb 2004 15:09:30 -0600
--------
Karen Gonzalez wrote:
> I'd like to find an easy way to slice potatoes for scalloped potatoes

I'd carefully use a sharp knife and go out to lunch a couple times on 
the $50 (or $30).  JMO.

============================

From: nancree[at]aol.com (Nancree)
Date: 12 Feb 2004 22:11:12 GMT
--------
Karen Gonzalez wrote:
> I'd like to find an easy way to slice potatoes for scalloped potatoes

Do you have one of those graters that is box-shaped?  You know, there is a
different grating size on each of the four sides?  Well, one side is for
slicing things like, yes, potatoes.  Works just fine.  Not expensive. Goes in
the dishwasher. 

============================

From: Brian Macke <macke[at]strangelove.net>
Date: Thu, 12 Feb 2004 22:45:39 -0600
--------
Melba's Jammin' wrote:
> I'd carefully use a sharp knife and go out to lunch a couple times on
> the $50 (or $30).

And good money says that those restaurants use mandolines rather than
knife skills. As someone that makes scalloped potatoes regularly, I'd
rather spend $25 on a decent mandoline that is in the dishwasher every
night than to waste an hour slicing seven pounds of potatoes. Sure I might
get it done in less time if I didn't care if the slices weren't all
exactly the same thickness. But maybe it's my dislike of undercooked
potatoes in my food. 

Your choice, of course.

============================

From: Melba's Jammin' <barbschaller[at]earthblink.net>
Date: Fri, 13 Feb 2004 12:27:34 -0600
--------
Brian Macke wrote:

> And good money says that those restaurants use mandolines rather than
> knife skills. As someone that makes scalloped potatoes regularly, I'd
> rather spend $25 on a decent mandoline that is in the dishwasher every
> night than to waste an hour slicing seven pounds of potatoes.

Sure.  If I were making restaurant portions of scalloped potatoes on a 
regular and frequent basis, I'd have one, too.  

An hour to slice 7# of spuds?  You need to improve your technique.  "-)
I use about 1-1/2 pounds (3 large spuds) for a batch for us (two 
people).  I can slice them with a knife in less than 5 minutes.  Add 
another 3 minutes for peeling them.  

> Your choice, of course.

Ain't it always.

============================

From: kilikini <kilikini1[at]NOSPAMhotmail.com>
Date: Fri, 13 Feb 2004 18:35:02 GMT
--------
Melba's Jammin' wrote:
> An hour to slice 7# of spuds?  You need to improve your technique.  "-)
> I use about 1-1/2 pounds (3 large spuds) for a batch for us (two
> people).  I can slice them with a knife in less than 5 minutes.  Add
> another 3 minutes for peeling them.

Wow, what's your technique?  When I make scallop potatoes, it's always a
HUGE undertaking.  It takes about 1 1/2 hours to prepare, another 1 1/2
hours to cook and about 15 minutes to consume.  How do you slice your
potatoes thinly and evenly in such a short time?  I only use my Henckle
(sp?) knife and my lack-of-skill.  LOL.

============================

From: Melba's Jammin' <barbschaller[at]earthblink.net>
Date: Fri, 13 Feb 2004 13:30:11 -0600
--------
kilikini wrote:
> Wow, what's your technique?  When I make scallop potatoes, it's always a
> HUGE undertaking.  It takes about 1 1/2 hours to prepare, 

HUH?

>another 1 1/2 hours to cook and about 15 minutes to consume.  How do 
>you slice your potatoes thinly and evenly in such a short time?  I 
>only use my Henckle (sp?) knife and my lack-of-skill.  LOL.

Certainly, a lot depends on the quantity of spuds one's making.  We're 
two at table.  Three large spuds (they weighed out to 1# 6 oz)does it 
with some leftover.  My scalloped potatoes consist of sliced (my SIL 
likes cubed) spuds layered with a bit of sliced onion and white sauce.  
I make the white sauce while prepping the spuds.  While the oven is 
heating.  Spuds, onions, white sauce, spuds, white sauce.  Bake for an 
hour at about 350, covered for 45 minutes, uncovered for the last 15.

I've still got ham leftover -- maybe I'll make some scalloped potatoes 
to prove I'm kidding myself that I can do it in less than 3 hours start 
to table.

This is getting curiouser and curiouser.  :-)

============================

From: kilikini <kilikini1[at]NOSPAMhotmail.com>
Date: Fri, 13 Feb 2004 20:20:54 GMT
--------
Melba's Jammin' wrote:
> I've still got ham leftover -- maybe I'll make some scalloped potatoes
> to prove I'm kidding myself that I can do it in less than 3 hours start
> to table.

We're three at the table, but my roommate eats enough for FIVE.  I usually
slice at least 8 large potatoes, layered with a couple of different kinds of
shredded cheese (I'll go through 3 cheese packages), and then I pour the
white sauce over.  So, spuds, cheese, spuds, cheese, spuds, cheese, spuds,
cheese, white sauce over all.  Then I bake at 350 for about 1 1/2 hours.  I
make a full lasagna pan size and we usually don't have any leftovers.  Oh, I
usually add a little nutmeg in my white sauce.  I think it makes the dish
*richer* tasting.  Has anyone else ever tried that?  It's really good!

============================

From: Goomba38 <Goomba38[at]comcast.net>
Date: Fri, 13 Feb 2004 22:46:03 -0500
--------
kilikini wrote:
>   Oh, I
> usually add a little nutmeg in my white sauce.  I think it makes the dish
> *richer* tasting.  Has anyone else ever tried that?  It's really good!

Yes, I always add a dash of nutmeg to cream sauces. I rarely want cheese in my
scalloped potatoes though. I like the simple richness of a classic scalloped
potato and don't need that much more to make me happy.

============================

From: Frogleg <frogleg[at]nowhere.com>
Date: Fri, 13 Feb 2004 16:49:31 GMT
--------
Melba's Jammin' wrote:
>I'd carefully use a sharp knife and go out to lunch a couple times on 
>the $50 (or $30).  JMO.

You're really out of the loop, Barb. A gen-u-wine upscale mandoline is
around $160. 

However, for uniform slices (and jullienne) a $10 gadget isn't a bad
investment. 

============================

From: Melba's Jammin' <barbschaller[at]earthblink.net>
Date: Fri, 13 Feb 2004 12:20:56 -0600
--------
Frogleg wrote:

> You're really out of the loop, Barb. A gen-u-wine upscale mandoline is
> around $160. 

Do tell.   :-)

> However, for uniform slices (and jullienne) a $10 gadget isn't a bad
> investment. 

No doubt.  One more gizmo I don't have room for that would wind up on my 
already cluttered countertop.   My daughter rolls hre eyes all the time 
at the crap that's there.  I like ready access.  When I can find what 
I'm looking for.

============================

From: Frogleg <frogleg[at]nowhere.com>
Date: Fri, 13 Feb 2004 18:49:50 GMT
--------
Melba's Jammin' wrote:
>No doubt.  One more gizmo I don't have room for that would wind up on my 
>already cluttered countertop.   My daughter rolls hre eyes all the time 
>at the crap that's there.  I like ready access.  When I can find what 
>I'm looking for.

I've made a rule that no more gadgets will come into my kitchen until
an un- or underused item of similar size moves out. The 'automatic
tortilla masher/cooker' displaced a complicated rice cooker. I'm not
sure what fringe benefits I've acquired by trading down (in size and
cost) vis-a-vis food processor. The real problems are those things
enjoyed from time to time, but which can't be considered as
"essential." I *do* enjoy making pasta, but it's not a staple. Still,
I'm keepin' my pasta machine. But there's a lot in cupboards and
drawers I haven't investigated more than the top layer of in years.
Funny what we keep. I have some very nice copper &amp; brass measuring
cups hanging in the kitchen, full of spiderwebs and dead moths now, I
suppose. I measure with a couple of cheap plastic cups in the
cupboard. The mandoline is unobtrusive, and I *do* use it from time to
time. 

============================

From: Brian Macke <macke[at]strangelove.net>
Date: Thu, 12 Feb 2004 22:42:24 -0600
--------
Karen Gonzalez wrote:
> I'd like to find an easy way to slice potatoes for scalloped potatoes
> (about 1/8" thin).

> [ ... ]

> I don't want to spend a fortune and I have very little room left in my
> kitchen (I live in an apartment). Any suggestions on mandolines or other
> gadgets? I'll appreciate names of brands and stores :)

I use this one, and it fits your requirements nicely:

http://www.kitchenetc.com/Products.cfm?sku=000566239

Good for scalloped potatoes, potato chips, onions, carrots, and fingers.

I seem to remember some piece of plastic that came with it, but I'm not
sure. I figure if I cooked in a place where OSHA cared, I might use it.

============================

From: mpoconnor7[at]aol.comnojunk (Michael O'Connor)
Date: 13 Feb 2004 12:03:40 GMT
--------
Karen Gonzalez wrote:
>Any
>suggestions on mandolines or other gadgets? I'll appreciate names of
>brands and stores :)

I went to a gourmet food store a while back and bought a cheap twelve dollar
mandolin-type slicer that works well for slicing and shredding potatoes and
onions and shaving ham; I don't remember the brand name but it was german and
it comes apart easy and is dishwasher safe.  A real mandolin can cost over a
hundred bucks.

============================

From: remarshall[at]webtv.net (Randy Marshall)
Date: Fri, 13 Feb 2004 06:47:33 -0600 (CST)
--------
Go to a second hand store and get a 70's era vegamatic ,maybe ebay

============================

From: rmp <xxnospam[at]xx.com>
Date: Sat, 14 Feb 2004 02:09:50 GMT
--------
Check out Fri 13 Wall Street Journal, personal section. They had a review. A
cheap Berniner or some such japanese made was considered the best.

============================

From: address.in.sig[at]nyc.rr.com (Curly Sue)
Date: Sat, 14 Feb 2004 13:20:33 GMT
--------
rmp wrote:
>Check out Fri 13 Wall Street Journal, personal section. They had a review. A
>cheap Berniner or some such japanese made was considered the best.

From the cited article:
"So we were grateful for our smallest mandoline of all, a Japanese
model from Bridge Kitchenware. As we held this little washboard-shaped
gadget on our cutting board (no stand here) we felt more in control.
We could adjust the width of our slices by simply turning a knob. It
comes with a safety guard, but our hands felt safe without it. But
best of all, it was the sharpest. We made consistent, super-thin cuts
-- we could practically see through our cucumber salad -- much faster
than we would with a knife.
---

STORE/PRICE/PHONE: Bridge Kitchenware; Benriner mandoline, small;
$35;800-274-3435; Bridgekitchenware.com QUALITY: Best Overall, Best
Value. Compact (3 1/2 x 12 inches) and easy to use, with sharpest
blade (it's not removable, though, as some others'blades). With one
straight edge, three julienne blades."

============================

From: mshaw[at]bangnetcom.com (Mark Shaw)
Date: 14 Feb 2004 15:34:30 -0500
--------
Karen Gonzalez wrote:
> I'd like to find an easy way to slice potatoes for scalloped potatoes

I have a cheap V-slicer, quite possibly the same one you mention
above.  It works just fine for scalloped potatoes.

============================

From: texpat <texpat[at]cox.net>
Date: Sat, 28 Feb 2004 15:07:42 -0600
--------
I have the Zyliss Slicer, and I love it. I don't know how it would hold up
if you were cooking for a crowd every day, but for occasional use, it's
great.

============================

Subject: Potatoes for Scalloped Potatoes
Newsgroups: rec.food.cooking

============================

From: Melba's Jammin' <barbschaller[at]earthlink.com>
Date: Mon, 16 Feb 2004 17:50:01 -0600
--------
It took me 16 minutes and 29 seconds to peel and slice (with a chef's 
knife, 1/8" thick, give or take 1/16") 3 large potatoes, (total weight 
1#6oz) and make the white sauce with which to layer them in a 1-1/2 
quart casserole dish.  They're ready to come out of the oven now.  Guess 
I'd better slice the ham and prep the broccoli and get the salads made.  
Supper's in 50 minutes.

============================

From: Gloria Puester <puester[at]worldnet.att.net>
Date: Mon, 16 Feb 2004 23:54:43 GMT
--------
Those must be some fancy salads (or did you mean 5 minutes?)

;-)

============================

From: Melba's Jammin' <barbschaller[at]earthlink.com>
Date: Mon, 16 Feb 2004 21:04:08 -0600
--------
Gloria Puester wrote:
> Those must be some fancy salads (or did you mean 5 minutes?)

:-)   Nope, 50 minutes is correct.   We watch Wheel of Fortune whilst we 
eat.  It's on at 6:30.   (How pathetic is that?)  But, the salads had 
iceberg, romaine, radish, onion, green pepper, carrot, and were dressed 
with my made-up dressing -- I sprinkle some sugar on the salad in the 
bowls, spray it with some olive oil, drizzle a leetle bit of soy sauce 
on it and then drizzle some balsamic vinegar on top.  Pretty good.

============================

From: Jill McQuown <jmcquown[at]bellsouth.net>
Date: Mon, 16 Feb 2004 18:19:17 -0600
--------
Melba's Jammin' wrote:
> It took me 16 minutes and 29 seconds to peel and slice (with a chef's
> knife, 1/8" thick, give or take 1/16") 3 large potatoes, (total weight
> 1#6oz) and make the white sauce with which to layer them in a 1-1/2
> quart casserole dish.  They're ready to come out of the oven now.
> Guess I'd better slice the ham and prep the broccoli and get the
> salads made. Supper's in 50 minutes.

HOLD that phone!  Wait a sec, I'll be right over!

============================

From: Melba's Jammin' <barbschaller[at]earthlink.com>
Date: Mon, 16 Feb 2004 21:00:19 -0600
--------
Jill McQuown wrote:
> HOLD that phone!  Wait a sec, I'll be right over!

Too late, Toots!  Gotta tell you that supper was pretty darned good.   
Dang shame you missed it.   The scalloped potatoes were very good.  Not 
too salty.  Tender.  Just wet enough.  (After getting them in the dish 
for the oven, I decided that by the time they baked, they'd be pretty 
t'ick, so I pour some milk on top -- like to almost the rim of the dish.  
Good move.  BTW, the white sauce was made with skim milk; the milk I 
poured was also no fat skim milk.

(And I was busy playing Collapse, so I didn't start the broccoli or the 
salads until about 6:15 p.m.).  We sat at 6:35.  I'm messy but I'm fast 
and can do three things in the kitchen at the same time.   :-)

============================

From: Sheryl Rosen <catmandy[at]optonline.net>
Date: Tue, 17 Feb 2004 04:43:35 GMT
--------
Melba's Jammin' wrote:
> (And I was busy playing Collapse, so I didn't start the broccoli or the
> salads until about 6:15 p.m.).  We sat at 6:35.  I'm messy but I'm fast
> and can do three things in the kitchen at the same time.   :-)

Collapse is addictive, isn't it??
Game House (www.gamehouse.com) has a few games that I have spent far too
much time playing....
Candy Cruncher is another one. Highly addictive.

At least you can win at Collapse!  Candy Cruncher just keeps on going, until
it beats YOU!

============================

From: Brian Macke <macke[at]strangelove.net>
Date: Mon, 16 Feb 2004 19:16:01 -0600
--------
Melba's Jammin' wrote:
> It took me 16 minutes and 29 seconds to peel and slice (with a chef's
> knife, 1/8" thick, give or take 1/16") 3 large potatoes, (total weight
> 1#6oz)

By contrast, I think I peel and slice about 12-15 red potatoes to a total
weight of 1750g.. which would be just under four pounds. This would
probably explain the difference in prep time. Peeling and slicing those
red potatoes takes me about 20 minutes with a mandolin.

(by the way, I use red potatoes because waxy potatoes tend to hold up
better than starchy ones.)

============================

From: kilikini <kilikini1[at]NOSPAMhotmail.com>
Date: Tue, 17 Feb 2004 15:00:07 GMT
--------
Melba's Jammin' wrote:
> It took me 16 minutes and 29 seconds to peel and slice (with a chef's
> knife, 1/8" thick, give or take 1/16") 3 large potatoes, (total weight
> 1#6oz) and make the white sauce with which to layer them in a 1-1/2
> quart casserole dish.  They're ready to come out of the oven now.  Guess
> I'd better slice the ham and prep the broccoli and get the salads made.
> Supper's in 50 minutes.

Okay, it must just take me longer because I use at least 9 potatoes in a
regular, lasagna sized pyrex dish.  Cooking time is always about 1 1/2 hours
(I don't have an oven - it's a toaster oven, renting an apartment is the
pitts!).  But I do make the white sauce as well.  Still, for me, you gotta
figure 2 1/2 to 3 hours including cooking time.

============================

From: Wayne Boatwright <WayneBoatWright[at]SMN.worldnet.att.net>
Date: Tue, 17 Feb 2004 16:32:57 GMT
--------
kilikini wrote:
> Okay, it must just take me longer because I use at least 9 potatoes in
> a regular, lasagna sized pyrex dish.  Cooking time is always about 1
> 1/2 hours (I don't have an oven - it's a toaster oven, renting an
> apartment is the pitts!).  But I do make the white sauce as well. 
> Still, for me, you gotta figure 2 1/2 to 3 hours including cooking
> time. 

And some folks, like me, are just slower at prep (like paring and slicing 
potatoes).  I can even make a "production" out of making mashed potatoes. 
<G>  And, of course, larger quantities take longer to prepare and to 
bake.


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