Mandoline Buying Guide
By Mandolines.com Staff
So, you’ve decided you want to purchase a mandoline, but you’re not sure which type of mandoline is right for you? There are many different types of mandolines on the market and a wide variety of price ranges as well. Before you decide which mandoline to choose from among the many models available, take a look at our breakdown of some of the different features to choose from among different mandoline styles.
One of the biggest differences between mandolines relates to the style of the mandoline. There are three basic types of mandolines – an adjustable platform mandoline, a platform insert mandoline and a flatboard mandoline. The main difference between these three mandoline styles relates to how the utensil operates and how the blade is attached to the mechanism. An adjustable platform mandoline has a platform that has a blade attached to it that remains stationary. The second platform is adjustable and its purpose is to guide the food to be cut across the blade surface. Depending on how far apart the two platforms are set on the mandoline determines the thickness of the cut. This style allows for a wide variation of cutting thicknesses.
The next style, the platform insert mandoline, operates by inserting a platform containing a cutting blade that differs depending on the thickness of the cut desired or the type of cut desired. In this style of mandoline, there is a specific blade for thin cuts, thick cuts, crinkle cuts, waffle cuts and more. This style of mandoline does not provide the ease of adjustability that the adjustable platform mandoline does but can offer a wider variety of mandoline blades and attachments that can be utilized to perform a larger selection of cutting styles.
Another mandoline style to consider is the flatboard mandoline. This style does not offer the varied selection of cuts that the other two styles offer, and is primarily used when one specific type of cut is desired, such as a julienne cut.
A mandoline can be made out of plastic, stainless steel, ceramic, wood, fiberglass or other materials. Most of the mandolines available to retail consumers are manufactured from either plastic or stainless steel. The type of material used to create the mandoline affects the price, longevity of use and ease of cleaning. Most of the lower priced models are made from plastic. A plastic mandoline can easily be washed in the dishwasher and will withstand normal household use. A mandoline made from stainless steel, while usually a bit pricier, can handle a heavier workload and is the preferred material for situations that require a great deal of cutting, such as in restaurants or other food service establishments. A stainless steel mandoline is usually handwashed, although some are dishwasher safe. Some models also require that oil periodically be rubbed on the mandoline to keep it in good working order.
Blades and Attachments:
One feature to consider before purchasing a mandoline is how many different types of cuts you desire. Some mandolines offer a wide variety of attachments and cutting blades that can produce a variety of cuts in addition to straight cuts, such as crinkle cuts, waffle cuts, julienne cuts, and some can even grate or shave ice. Blades and attachments are not interchangeable from mandoline to mandoline so make sure that the style you select has the assortment of attachments and blades that you desire.
There are a number of factors to consider before purchasing a mandoline, but no matter what type of mandoline you select, you can feel confident that this versatile utensil will ease preparation in the kitchen and will add to the presentational quality of the food that you prepare.
Published: May 27, 2010
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