I picked up this handy little tool at Bowery Kitchen Supplies Inc., located in the Chelsea Market (appropriately, also home to the Food Network studios). This store is a kitchen connoisseur’s dream offering great value on a multitude of products. I can’t visit NYC without popping in to supplement my burgeoning stable of gadgets. The now-defunct Bodum store (an oasis of shiny white and glass) was around the corner, so trips to this neighbourhood left me burdened with heavy bags and a packing nightmare.
Fortunately, this compact ginger grater is easy to pack, made of white porcelain (did I mention my obsession with white china), and reasonable prices, satisfying all requirments when shopping abroad. Williams-Sonoma has a similar model for about $15, but you can find the model pictured above for one-third the price at Chinese markets and other kitchen supply stores.
Cooks Illustrated promoted this tool in their September, 2007 edition and I highly concur. Metal graters, including my beloved Microplane Grater, tend to cut the fibrous root as part of the grating process, potentially leaving your dish a bit hairy. The nubs on this ceramic board, however, tease the pulp out into a fluffy, glorious cloud and leave the fibres behind. Any juices can be tipped, along with the pulp, into your preparation; simply discard the mass of fibres into your organics bin.
Always one for multi-tasking, you’ll be relieved to know that this grater can be used for chocolate, hard cheeses and even cinnamon. Just rinse the board under running water and it will wait patiently in your drawer or hanging from its hole, taking up no space at all thanks to its slim profile, until called into action. This, dear reader, is my tool of the week.