You need a good whisk in the kitchen. You can use a fork to mix a dressing but not a sauce and it’s critical for getting air into egg whites to make meringues by hand. What should you buy?
– Whisks don’t take up much room so it’s good to have two. You’ll need one large balloon whisk that gets air into batters and egg whites and beats the hell out of stiff sauces. And you need a tiddler, a little whisk that you can use to get the lumps out of sauces.
– You can also buy a flexible whisk with metal fronds that supposedly gets into every part of the bowl. We find them a bit gimmicky and too expensive. There’s no need to buy a whisk with little metal balls inside the whisk unless you really feel an eccentric need to do so – they are impossible to clean!
Silicone or metal?
Use a metal whisk to beat egg whites and flour-based sauces that may get lumpy. A silicone whisk is fine for whisking creamy light sauces and dressings.
– Hang the whisks on a rail if they get in your way in the kitchen drawer but keep them away from the cooker as they will get greasy and you will have a problem when you use them to beat egg whites for meringue. If you do hang your whisk near the cooker, wash and dry it perfectly before using it.
– It’s a good idea to buy one non-stick whisk as they can be used in any pan (though the best advice we can give you is to buy good quality anodised non-stick cookware that you can use with metal implements). If you use a metal whisk in an average non-stick pan, you will scrape off the coating.
– If you are the type of cook who will leave their whisk leaning against the hot surface of the cooker, buy one with a plastic handle that can withstand heat () and can stand a high temperature or invest in an all-stainless-steel whisk.
– A small whisk is excellent for salad dressings – buy one that can get into the nooks and crannies of any bowl. If it’s bendy, all the better.
– Wash or soak your whisk immediately after use in hot soapy water so that it doesn’t get congealed with food. The dishwasher is great for extracting bits of sauce and egg white from the wires but you still need to check it before putting it away. Make sure it is dishwasher safe.
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