Over the past few decades many cooks have begun to rely on electronic gadgets to do all of the hard work in their kitchens. No longer will someone break out the box grater to reduce a block of cheese into fine shreds, and will instead send it rocketing through the blades of their food processor. While this sort of activity can save a ton of time, it doesn’t always give optimal results. For example, most food processors can’t provide the user with control over the size of the shredded food, or even the end results of the process.
This is the reason that all good cooks will want to invest in a few different manual graters. The use of a few different sizes can often mean the need for several tools, but there are also some high-quality vendors making the famous “Microplane” graters available in the traditional “box grater” format too. Before purchasing the simple box style, however, it is necessary to ensure that the plates are the type you will need most.
For example, if you are someone who wants to be able to coarsely grate hard cheese, spices like ginger or garlic, and even foods like coconut and carrots you would want to acquire a Microplane Coarse grater, or a box grater with this plate attached. If, however, you find that will require a grater for things like cabbage, soft cheese, and chocolate you will want to opt for a Medium Ribbon grater instead. Of course, the Microplane became initially famous due to its use as a Zester and Grater or oranges, lemons, hard cheese and spices like nutmeg and cinnamon, and you will want this style too.
In addition to purchasing these graters as individual units or in a handy box style, you might want to consider investing in one of the handy little “finger saver” attachments that fit over the edges of the individual or box graters as well. These place a protective guard between the blades and the fingers and can make it much easier and safer to process even the smallest or hardest foods without difficulty or harm.
There are also some Microplane products that are geared specifically at one food. For instance, there are nutmeg graters that feature a handy container which can store the whole spices (including nutmeg or cinnamon sticks) over a long term without risk of spoilage, but which also feature a Microplane. This allows the user to keep a ready supply of the fresh spices handy, and pairs the storage container with the necessary Microplane grater for immediate use.
To be sure you are getting a grater that is suitable for your needs, you should make sure that it is outfitted with comfortable handles, has rubber footing for stability ad traction on any surface, is made from 18/8 stainless steel to prevent corrosion, and comes with some sort of storage cover that keeps hands and fingers safe. The blades should also be detachable from a box style device in order to ensure that both the interior and exterior surfaces can be properly cleaned after each use.