Can I just say that I’ve been dying to do a giveaway on this blog? Pretty much since I started writing stuff here?
The awesome folks at OXO sent me two hand held mandoline slicers, one to try out and one to give to a reader. The hand held mandoline slicer is pretty minimalistic (there’s a different slicer for julienne), but I really don’t need any fancy cuts on a mandoline. I’ve only ever wanted one to slice veggies thinly, and that’s exactly what this hand held unit is for.
It’s not big, and it’s fairly flat for easy storing. It’s got three sizes for cutting, but I’ve used the largest setting only so far. I must admit that I haven’t used the finger guard at all. The veggies won’t stay in place. It’s easy enough to just make sure that I don’t go crazy with my slicing. I’ve used it for carrots and sweet potatoes (which stained my OXO terribly temporarily) for soups, but that isn’t very interesting. That’s ok though – there has been a use for the mandoline that I’ve been dying to try. Three words for you: mandarin orange dust.
I’ve been daydreaming about this since I first read about it on http://penandfork.com/tips-tutorials/mandarin-orange-dust/ via a post on thekitchn.com.
Shaving orange slices proved a little more difficult than I expected on the slicer. It probably would have been easier with a traditional knife, but I lack knife skills and confidence. It took a few tries, but I figured out a trick to slicing the oranges. I think that since the mandarin orange isn’t as firm as a root veggie that you have to coax it a bit. Don’t strike it straight down the slicer. You want to zig-zag it back and forth as you push downward. Once I got that figured out, slicing went much faster, easier, and neater.
After all is said and done, I’m happier to have the OXO slicer than to be without it.
It’s been warm in Greater Boston all weekend (and today has been crazy hot for mid-April) so I decided against drying my orange slices in the oven. I borrowed my sister’s dehydrator, cranked it on the warmest setting, and left it for a few hours.
The slices got brittle (yay!) but I’m not sure if the slices were supposed to be sticky or not. My slices were sticky which meant that my orange dust had a sticky quality to it. There was no mention of stickiness in the original post. Maybe it’s a dehydrator vs. oven thing.
Anyway, the slices were taken to my spice grinder with some sugar, and yay! I have a jar of orange dust! A jar of really bright yellow-orange colored dust! Pictures of the dust will have to come later… by the time I got around to finishing, I was out of sunlight.
For what it’s worth, I used four mandarin oranges and got about 1/3 to 1/2 cup of dust. (I think it’s more like 1/2 cup, but I haven’t measured it.)
What will I do with this dust? I’m already working on some ideas. In the meantime, you can enter to win your own OXO hand held mandoline slicer. To enter, leave me a comment – let me know what you’d do with orange dust, or what you would do with slicer… you can leave me any comment really. BUT! I ask for three things: 1) only comments made through the end of April will be eligible to win. 2) If you are commenting anonymously, you have to leave me your email address in your comment (don’t worry, I won’t use it for anything other than to contact you that you’ve won). You can spell out your email addy if that makes you feel better, but you can’t win if I can’t contact you. And, 3) US addresses only please (because that’s how my shipping label will work).
It’s not much, but I’m really happy that I can share this with you. OXO is not paying me in any way, shape or form – they sent me the slicer for free to try out. My opinion is my own.