Let me tell you a little story. It’s called: The Tale of Three Whisks.
Once upon a time, there was a metal whisk. This metal whisk was Old and Wise, and did its job better than anyone in all the land. All the forks were jealous, because the whisk got all the babes and all the glory, while they just slopped stuff over the side of the bowl trying to emulate him.
Then one day there came a new alien race of cookware – the Non-Stick Calphalon’s! And where once the Wise Old Whisk was used, now he had been replaced by a plastic whisk. This plastic whisk made great friends with the kitchen appliances, as he was Gentle on their surfaces and kind, especially, to the now powerful Non-Stick Calphalon’s.
This angered the Wise Old Whisk, because he could see beyond the Gentle Whisk’s good intentions and seeming practicalities to the truth – he hardly did his job! He was weak, and lazy, and when sauces began to thicken (as so many sauces do), he’d give and bend beneath their weight! The Wise Old Whisk had to be sly, and very Clever indeed, to earn the respect of the kitchenware who once had revered him.
And so he devised a disguise, changing his face so no one would know. He painted tephlon-safe and heat-proof silicon over his strong and wiry frame, and like a hero in a phone booth his super powers began to show. The all powerful Calphalon’s recognized his speed, his agility, and his strength immediately, and soon the other appliances understood as well – that the Gentle Whisk had been nothing but a cheap, lazy, useless excuse of a whisk.
Everyone loved the new, silicon-clad Clever Whisk, and sang him praises which rung ever so sweetly off his brightly-painted tines, creating ripples of love in everything he touched.
Did I mention I’m under the weather? Welcome to my brain, people. Turn back now or… never mind, it’s already too late for you.
Anyway, if you got anything from that story it should be this – I looked freakin’ everywhere for a whisk that would do what a whisk should do (be metal) but not scratch the surface of a non-stick pot (be plastic) that wasn’t a flimsy piece of crap, and found nothing again and again. Then I went to the pharmacy to get some drugs – did I mention I’m ill? – and there, of all places, was this aura-glowing, angels-singing, heaven-opening silicon-coated whisk. Genius.
I have many a time considered myself a bit of a culinary MacGyver, making due with whatever I’ve got on hand -in some situations this works out quite well for me, but more often than not I find that having the right tool in the kitchen can make a world of difference. Like the first time I used a microplane instead of the small side of a box grater. Or that time I realized the difference between rolling pasta with a machine v.s. by hand. Or all of the times, past and future, where I’ve wanted to temper eggs, make an emulsion, or beat yolks only to be frustrated by a flimsy plastic whisk or a sloppy, not-enough-air-incorporating fork. Being resourceful and knowing how to make due with nothing but a paperclip and some Seran wrap is always a good skill to have, but having the right tool never hurt.