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Just discovered: Life can be easier. Really.

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It will cost you, just not as much as you might think. I thought it would be wildly expensive, an extravagance I could do without. And so I made a sort-of martyr of myself anytime I wanted to, you know, slice potatoes.

Or julienne carrots. Or any of those prep tasks that require the precision of a trained chef or engineer or at the very least someone who actually cares whether all the cucumber slices are paper thin. (Me, I’m good if maybe a third of my cucumber slices are as flimsy as the recipe requires. In my house, who’s gonna complain about thick-ish cucumber slices on little tea sandwiches? We are not that evolved yet.)

As I’ve not yet mastered the knife skills necessary for paper-thin anything, I caved and bought a tool. I try to steer clear of kitchen tools that promise much but then just contribute to life’s clutter. (Similarly, I try to steer clear of people who do the same thing.) But a mandoline has always been the object of my kitchen-tool coveting, even though I tried to do the quasi-philosophical thing and go without.

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Besides, mandolines, in my shopping experience, tend to be pricey. They can be cool-espresso-machine pricey. “It”-hair-dryer pricey. Even pretty-clutch-from-ShopBop-I-must-have-you-for-Fall pricey.

Except for this one — the Benriner Japanese Mandoline Slicer (yes, all you language people, we’ve got some serious redundant phrasing going on there). I first saw it on Michael Ruhlman’s blog, and then kept running into it everywhere, as though it were saying, pick me! At around $23, how could I not?

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14 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    I’m so happy to read this. I share your thoughts on mandolines. I’ve always wanted one, but they’re so dang expensive and I figured it would be something I’d spend money on and then never use. I think I might have to grab one of these though- thanks!

  2. 2

    Adelina said,

    My mother and sisters have been using this Japanese mandoline for years. It does the job very well and at such a price, it is so well-worth it to own one. It is, like you said, sold everywhere. I also agree that although we need a mandoline to help us with nice cutting jobs, I would never want to spend more than $50 for one. I’ve seen mandolines that were sold for about $125 or so. To me, that is ridiculous!

    Glad you finally decided to own one!

  3. 3

    This is a great mandoline, no need to thinnk twice about buying it. I’ve had one for years (7? 8?), and got it for about $15 at an Asian market. A reviewer on Amazon said the blade rusts. I have not had any rust. Just rinse and air dry. Watch the finger tips though, those blades are sharp!

  4. 4

    tianne said,

    i’ve been wanting to buy one for a while… i will totally look out for this one! i’m in canada though,… so it might be tough to find. awesome price!

  5. 5

    ziabaki said,

    Yippee! I’ve been looking for the right one. Thanks for the heads up!

  6. 6

    Trisha said,

    Sarah: Give it a try — I promise this is one kitchen tool that won’t languish in a drawer. It’s easy to use and clean!

  7. 7

    Trisha said,

    Adelina: Isn’t it great that there are options out there that don’t cost an arm and a leg?

    Linda: Those blades are amazingly sharp! Thanks for letting us know you’ve been happy with yours over the years.

    tianne: I wonder if it’s available on Amazon.ca? Good luck!

    ziabaki: You’re welcome! : )

  8. 8

    honeyandjam said,

    I’ve been looking for one of these for ages! I’ll have to check this one out. Thanks for the tip!

  9. 9

    I am so sold! I’ve also entertained the idea but I end up relying on my culinary trained husband for lots of tiny cutting. He’s also taught me pretty well. But my mom had a mandoline growing up and they truly are invaluable. I think it’s time!

  10. 10

    Cool site, love the info. I do a lot of research online on a daily basis and for the most part, people lack substance but, I just wanted to make a quick comment to say I’m glad I found your blog. Thanks,

  11. 11

    […] wit: spicy tomato sauce, thin-sliced red-skinned potatoes and roasted kale — a deserving wintry cliche — all scattered over […]

  12. 12

    Caitlin J said,

    Oh my gosh! I’m so glad I saw this! You don’t even know how long I’ve wanted a mandolin! They’re just so bloody expensive I always decided against it. Thank you thank you thank you!

  13. 13

    Trisha said,

    It’s true – mandoline’s can be crazy expensive! The Benriner is a great choice for budget-conscious food lovers. Enjoy!

  14. 14

    spiralizer said,

    Hi there! This article couldn’t be written any better!
    Reading through this post reminds me of my previous roommate!
    He continually kept talking about this. I am going to send this
    article to him. Fairly certain he will have a very good read.
    Thanks for sharing!


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