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Spork, Coconut Scraper, Cheap Mandolin

r
rdabke Dec 19, 2006 07:59 PM

Where can I buy the following:

1. Spork
2. Easy Coconut scraper that takes the effort out of the job
3. Cheap but effective mandolin for making stir fries, julienne cuts of carrots, daikon etc.

Please attach pictures & or websites if you have a good recommendation.

  1. j
    Jim Washburn Dec 21, 2006 03:00 AM

    I can't provide pics or links, but most Asian stores I have been to have some sort of primitive coconut scraper in stock. There are a couple of different types of hand-held ones, and there's also a common type that is firmly attached to a small stool, which you sit on to anchor it and twirl the coconut half on the scraper before you. These are typically scaled for very small people, however. I am big enough that operating such a device would be impossible. At my local Indian store I got for $20 a clamp-to-the-table-top hand-cranked device somewhat similar to the one linked to above. I know that there is a bigger, heavier-duty model out there, and I've been looking for it, but so far I haven't found one in the flesh. I certainly wouldn't want to scrape very many coconuts with just one of the simple hand tools, but for just the occasional coconut now and then, such a simple tool would work fine. Good luck.

    Jim

    2 Replies
    1. re: Jim Washburn
      Professor Salt Dec 21, 2006 03:16 AM

      "most Asian stores I have been to have some sort of primitive coconut scraper in stock"

      It's probably a common kitchen tool for Asians living closer to the tropics, but I've never seen a coconut scraper in any Japanese food store in the US or Japan. Haven't seen one in Chinese or Korean stores, either. In an Indian or Thai neighborhood, probably.

      1. re: Professor Salt
        j
        Jim Washburn Dec 21, 2006 03:39 AM

        Could be. My Asian grocery-shopping experience is mostly limited to Texas. Here the Chinese/Vietnamese groceries are more plentiful than Japanese or Korean, and most of the Chinese/Vietnamese grocery stores I've been to do, indeed, have coconut scrapers of some sort. I'm not certain of this, but I do think I remember seeing them at one of the Korean groceries in Austin. That does seem a little odd, I'll freely admit. However, Texas is not Korea, and I certainly see lots of other not-Korean stuff in the Korean markets here, as well. Chicory coffee from New Orleans, e.g.

        Jim

    2. d
      Displaced California Foodie Dec 21, 2006 12:42 AM

      I have a V-slicer by Borner and I have used it for ~15 or more years. It is extremely sharp so you must keep it away from kids and becareful when slicing and dicing. I love it and just bought 2 from this website to give out for Christmas. I would order from this company again. It is $15 cheaper than what I paid for it 15 years ago: http://www.thekitchenstore.com/819574...

      1. hatless Dec 20, 2006 04:13 PM

        We're happy so far with the $10-or-so Chefmate mandolin at Target, recommended by Cooks' Illustrated. Smooth operation, easy to clean, and slices cleanly. It's made of plastic, so don't expect it to last decades or survive a year in a backpack in the Himalayas, but it's cheap and effective for sure.

        1. s
          sweetTooth Dec 19, 2006 10:20 PM

          Found a picture of an Indian coconut scraper here:
          http://www.nandyala.org/mahanandi/arc...
          From the discussion, it looks like you could try looking for one in an Indian grocery or appliance store. I got mine from India. It is a very easy to use tool!

          1. DirtyMartini Dec 19, 2006 09:05 PM

            For lightweight backpacking fanatics, Snow Peak makes the ultimate spork: a 0.6oz titanium version. It's available from Campmor:

            http://www.campmor.com/webapp/wcs/sto...

            1. s
              Sam Harmon Dec 19, 2006 08:32 PM

              Kyocera makes some great ceramic mandolins. I have the adjustable straight edge model (they do make a julienne model), and it works great for my uses--most often Yukon Golds for Potato Dauphinoise.

              http://www.surlatable.com/common/goog...

              1. leanneabe Dec 19, 2006 08:05 PM

                Camping stores usually sell sporks... I've seen them at REI (www.rei.com).

                Don't know about the coconut scraper... lately I've only been buying young coconuts from the ethnic grocery stores and it's so soft you just spoon it out. For harder coconuts, perhaps a curved blade would work... are oyster shuckers curved?

                Cheap mandolins can be found either in Chinatown stores or KMart/Sears Essentials (the Martha Stewart line). Also, check Ross/Marshalls/TJ Maxx or HomeGoods.

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