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Feb 16, 2013 05:37 PM

Do I need a rasp grater if I have a regular medium microplane?

I've been zesting lots of lemons lately and I've been using my regular medium microplane. Should I be using a microplane rasp grater instead so as to avoid the pith?

ETA: It's the Microplane Fine Grater I own. Do I need a rasp grater too to zest lemons or will the Microplane Fine grater work without removing the pith?

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  1. The microplane fine grater will work without removing pith's more a question of how fine you want the zest.

    I'd suggest that in 99% of the uses for zest, your current microplane would be fine (pardon the pun...). And in a rare circumstance that you did want it more fine, you could run a knife over the zest to break it up a bit more.

    That said I like the size & shape of the rasp better.

    1 Reply
    1. re: reiney

      I might borrow a friend's rasp and see how it compares to my microplane. I seem to be very particular about the shape of cooking utensils, so a rasp might or might not be effective for me.

    2. I think the Microplane Fine grater will work just fine. I don't think you will need a rasp grater.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Chemicalkinetics

        Oh, good. I'm accumulating way too many kitchen tools for my tiny apartment kitchen to handle.

      2. The fine grater is the right grater for zest. Just make sure to draw the lemon across the greater only once per "spot". In other words, rotating the lemon after every stroke ensures that only the zest and none of the pith is removed.

        1 Reply
        1. There are a lot of different sizes and shapes of Microplanes, so this tip may not work for everyone. But for those who have the version of the fine grater shaped like a tube, with an open area on one side and the teeth on the other:

          It works beautifully if you use it as you would a bow playing the lemon like a violin, with repeated "staccato" notes: draw it across the skin, pick it up and start next to your previous stroke, and so on until you've accumulated the desired amount of zest in the trough above your "bow".

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