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Other uses for a spaetzle maker other than spaetzle?

I am on a serious comfort food jag and I am craving spaetzle. Though the scraping technique off a plate or board or pressing through a colander would be just as efficient, I fear my inherent lack of coordination and a $10 spaetzle maker is calling my name. What else can I use a spaetzle maker for? thanks

spaetzle maker:

http://www.amazon.com/Norpro-3128-Spa...

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  1. I don't know of any other use.

    I have switched to using a perforated grill plate with similar size holes. I press the batter through the holes with a spatula. It still is single use (I don't grill enough), but it stores more compactly.

    1 Reply
    1. re: paulj

      Great idea to use the grill plate!

    2. While I am sure that some odd alternative use could be claimed for the spaetzle maker, I doubt that it would be practical or that it would fit any meaningful culinary need. I use my spaetzle maker exclusively for spaetzle and I prefer it to any other method chiefly because it is easier to control over a pan of hot liquid and provides greater uniformity in the finished dumplings.
      Bite the bullet; place the order. It doesn't take up that much space.

      1. I use a thick styrofoam tray on which a family-size bunch of chicken thighs were wrapped. I punched a couple of dozen holes about 1/4" in diameter on end of the tray, and pour the batter onto the unpunctured side. Then I squeegee the batter over the holes with a bench scraper (another piece of styrofoam would work). If the holes start to clog, rapping the tray on the rim of the pot of boiling water clears them. Works perfectly and easily, takes no room to store, and is FREE.

        1 Reply
        1. re: greygarious

          Free and a good way to recycle, grey. I'm stuck on the colander method myself. BUT... it's nice to buy new toys.

          To the OP: No, I can't think of alternate use for a spaetzle maker, but after reading the amazon reviews, I would consider spending a little more money and purchasing the Norpro 3129, all steel:

          http://www.amazon.com/Norpro-Spaetzle...

        2. Spaetzle is my daughters' favorite breakfast and part of my SO's and my favorite meal. I own a spaetzle maker after growing up watching my Mom use her colander to make it...... what a mess. The spaetzle maker pays for itself in ease of use and clean up. I would recommend getting the all stainless version.

          2 Replies
          1. re: rhoneranger

            Have you tried apple spaetzle? The batter is similar, except it incorporates a generous amount of grated apple. I believe it is a regional Swiss specialty.

            On the matter of cleanup, the simple grill plate is simpler than the sliding hopper maker. There's just one surface to clean, no tracks or hopper.

            I was inspired to switch to the grill plate by this simple design:
            http://www.amazon.com/Kuchenprofi-Spa...
            which is a round perforated plate that fits like a lid over pot.

            1. re: paulj

              That's an expensive version of another Chowhound's inspiration, which I read about and tried - punch holes in a disposable foil pie pan. I tried that but found it uncomfortable to hold the pie pan rim, which got very hot very fast. Had to put on an oven mitt, which then got batter on it. The other problem, which could occur with any metal utensil used as a spaetzle maker, was that the steam rising from the simmering water quickly cooks the batter, plugging up the holes. This is far less of a problem with the styrofoam tray, which does a good job of insulating the batter and is comfortable to handle without hand protection.

          2. I tried using a spaetzle maker and could NOT get the hang of it! Made a big mess, and I'm generally proficient in the kitchen....oh well

            I now "pipe" the dough, using a ziplock bag with a tip cut off. That way I can vary the size every time, too.