- jeff Dec 12, 2004 02:07 AM
I'm looking for some advice on can openers. I had a manual one for 5-6 years that was great. The blade started to rust so I bought a kitchenaid that was horrible. I'm now using an even worse one from the local supermarket until I decide on the next. Henkels makes one that is highly rated but is $25! am i just being cheap or is that really worth it for a manual can opener? any suggestions would be helpful.
I have a cheapy called Swing-A-Way that works well, and of all things, made in USA. It has plastic coating on the handles so is comfortable, and it bites deep and cuts well. It's getting a little rusty too, but that's OK, didn't cost much. I am sure that, like so many things on the market, price is no indicator of quality. The main thing is how it works, and that means trying it, and that means back to the supermarket, 'cause that's where the cans are. You want to give each one a solid test, on wide cans, narrow cans, tops, bottoms, every which way. Just look out for the store employees, though, they get so ticked off about this! (Explaining it's a scientific study doesn't help.)
I have been using hand held Swing-Aways since the 60s.
I keep a "parts magnetic" on the fridge when I don't want the lid to fall into the contents. A parts magnetic is a magnetic on a stick, used by some automobile mechanics when a part falls into an unreachable place.
My folks have a wall mounted Swing-Away. An aunt would go through a can opener a year, she used to give us the can opener because we had a retired handyman living next door. He would fix the can opener, we would return it, my aunt would comment, she couldn't wait for us to return it (we live ~2 hours away), so she would buy a replacement, then a year or two later, she would give us a broken can opener, Mr Fletcher would fix it, we would take it back. After many years of doing this, my aunt gave electric can openers to almost everyone in the family. This was many years ago, when electric can openers were new (?) and expensive. My mother tried the "new" repaired electric can opener and felt it was not worth the counter space/effort. She still uses her wall mounted swing-away. I had to re-mount it for her after she had her kitchen remodled.
I've used a Swing Away for years and got tired of cleaning the food crud off of it all of the time. I recently bought a Kuhn Rikon manual opener that cuts the seal on the can. No sharp edges. It never comes in contact with the food and stays clean. I got it at TJ Maxx. I'm giving them to several family members as stocking stuffers. It does take some getting used to but I'll not go back to the other kind ever.
The Swing-A-Way is a classic -- I've had one for years. But after using one of the new ones that cut the whole top off below the rim, leaving a smooth edge, I'm seriously thinking of replacing mine.
I'm sure the one Candy recommended is fine, but there are other brands out there (I've seen Zyliss and one other that slips my mind now).
The Kuhn(?)(they make wonderful pressure cookers) is great, my sister has one. It doesn't even look like a can opener when you first look at it(it's very simple & slim). It's a bit confusing to use the first time because of that reason. You can take it out for as a dinner party game to see who can figure it out.
When it's cutting the can, it doesn't even feel like it's cutting/laboring, but it is. It works well. It cuts around the rim of the can & leaves smooth edges. You can even leave the lid of the can as a lid for temporary storage of food.
The drawback to the "side lid" openers is that you can't use it for something you'd have to drain by squeezing the lid into the can, like tuna. For that reason, I have the Zyliss. Solid, not as sexy looking your gadget drawer as the Kuhn, but works really well.