AUTHOR: Julia TITLE: Kitchen Tools - Spice Grinder DATE: 10/27/2008 04:05:00 PM ----- BODY:
My kitchen is small. Tiny, really. So small that I need to consider each piece of equipment for it to warrant space. I have a coffee bean grinder, but not a spice grinder. Some people use the same type of grinder for both jobs, but have two – one for coffee and the other for spices. I just don’t have the cupboard or counter space for both. Since I grind coffee beans every day, it wins the appliance challenge. But I do like fresh ground pepper – and once a month, I grind fresh peppercorns in my coffee bean grinder.

But Julia, you ask, how do you keep the pepper from tasting like coffee? Because I clean the grinder first. And so I don’t electrocute myself, I need to clean the grinder with a dry cleanser – that is, no soap and water. The best tool: raw rice. I grind ¼ cup raw rice to a fine powder. I discard the rice and wipe out the basin. Voila! A clean spice grinder. I don’t bother cleaning in the other direction, because I rather like the idea of a little peppercorn in my coffee.

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----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Blogger Lydia (The Perfect Pantry) DATE:10/27/2008 08:52:00 PM Great tip! ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Blogger Rachel DATE:10/27/2008 09:05:00 PM What type of grinder do you have? We're in the market for one. ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Blogger Rachel DATE:10/27/2008 09:05:00 PM Thanks! ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Blogger chrisdat DATE:10/28/2008 06:31:00 AM Great tip, I used my spice grinder for pepper recently and I could not get rid of the pepper in my other spices. Try nutmeg and pepper - ick! I’m going to give it a try. ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Blogger Julia DATE:10/28/2008 08:41:00 AM Lydia, thanks.

Rachel, I have a bodum coffee grinder, but I'm not crazy about it. It's designed to grind beans for a coffee press, which is not very fine, so I've had to learn to finesse it to get the finer grind that I prefer.

Chrisdat, thanks for the warning. I'll be sure to avoid that combo. ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Blogger melissa DATE:10/29/2008 01:55:00 PM Thank you so much for the rice tip! I hate cleaning out my grinder. ----- --------