As you might expect, we've got a lot of handmade tools in our kitchen: two hand-forged knives, bowls and platters of all shapes and sizes, wooden scoops and spoons, more cutting boards than we really need, serving trays, bowls, plates, mugs, cups, the dining table.... These are all beautiful and well-loved, of course, but if there's one handmade item in the kitchen that has changed the way I cook, it's Sarah's mortar and pestle.
I've used other mortar-and-pestles in my kitchen adventures, but they've all come up lacking. The marble one had no teeth. The mexican molcajete left grit in the food. The iron one turned everything gray.
And then, this ceramic beauty came along. Suddenly, grinding spices was a joy. Peppercorns? Powdered. Garlic? Pasted. Me? Pleased.
This week we're excited to offer special deals that are sure to elevate and inspire your home cooking. We've got the mortars and pestles, of course. The handmade pepper mills from Ruby Pear feature ceramic CrushGrind mechanisms, and somehow they make pepper taste bright and fresh. And the Salty Gift Pack has beautiful salt harvested right from our very own Salish Sea.
For one week only, these guys are all 20% off!
Did you need more inspiration for your mortar and pestle? Here are my favorite uses:
- Grind up a teaspoon each of peppercorns, fennel seeds and coriander with a garlic clove, then add two teaspoons of salt to make the best grilling rub for your steaks.
- Sarah's favorite: grind 1/2 cup of green pumpkin seeds (pepitas) and a clove of garlic. Add salt, then toss with steamed broccoli, roasted brussels sprouts, or sauteed green beans.
- Toast rice in a pan until golden and nutty. Let it cool, then grind to a coarse flour. This is an essential ingredient for any authentic larb recipe.
- Grind cardamom, cumin, peppercorns, chili flakes, garlic, and handfuls of fresh herbs to make zhug.
- Are you suddenly baking tons of bread? Toast whole wheat berries, crack them in the mortar and pestle, and then add them to your dough to make a flavorful, hearty loaf. (Even better: go to your favorite beer supply store and find toasted, malted barley berries!)