If you’ve ever wondered what the heck all those different strainers are for, you’re not alone.
Most people have never even seen half of them before, let alone know what they’re for.
But don’t worry! We’re here to help. We’ve broken down the different types of strainers and explained how they work, so that next time you need a strainer in your kitchen, you can pick the right one without having to ask a chef or look it up on the internet.
What are strainers used for?
Straining is the act of removing solids from liquid. A strainer is a device that’s used to separate these solids from liquids.
There are many different types of strainers, and they can be used for a variety of things. Some examples include straining your homemade tomato sauce to remove the seeds, or using a coffee filter to separate grinds from brewed coffee.
Strainers are also used in many industries, such as food preparation and manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, and chemical production.
All types of strainers and what they are used for
1. Chinois strainer
A chinois strainer, also known as a China cap, is a cone-like tool that can be used to strain out the pulp from a liquid. It is made up of a metal mesh that allows water to pass through while trapping the pulp in its mesh structure.
The strainer can be used to filter anything from stock, sauces, soups, and coffee grounds to more solid ingredients like nuts, seeds, or grains.
The benefits of using a chinois strainer are that it helps ensure that only the liquid remains and will not become cloudy, while also making it easier to remove the pulp from the liquid.
The chinois strainer is ideal for use when you want to create a smooth texture in your food or drink.
This makes it ideal for use in food preparation where you want to keep as much flavor and nutrients intact as possible.
It also has no moving parts so it is easy to clean and maintain compared with other types of strainers which may have multiple parts that need to be cleaned separately after each use.
The disadvantages of using a chinois strainer include having limited use outside of food preparation.
If you are looking for something versatile enough that can be used in many different settings then this isn’t going to be your best option because it only works well in situations where you need something lightweight yet strong enough to strain out large particles.
2. Colander strainers
A colander is a strainer that you use to drain water from pasta, vegetables, and other food.
It’s made of metal, plastic, or ceramic, and has holes in the bottom so that liquid can flow through it.
There are two types of colanders: the kind with legs (to keep it off the countertop) and the kind without legs (which you can put into bowls or pots).
They’re also available in different sizes and shapes.
One of the advantages to owning a colander is that they are useful for draining excess water from pasta and vegetables so they don’t get waterlogged or soggy.
This means you can cook them quickly without having to wait for them to sit there for hours on end!
They come in lots of different sizes and shapes so you can use them for different things.
Some have larger holes so they’re great for draining large amounts of liquid at once; others have smaller holes so they’re better suited for small amounts.
Some have flat bottoms that let you drain liquids into another container while others have corners that allow you to pour liquids directly into another pot or bowl without spilling anything along the way!
Some of the disadvantages include some people feeling like colanders take up too much space on their countertops because they’re big and bulky.
They also can be hard to clean and oftentimes have lots of small holes that are difficult to clean out.
Some people also find that colanders are hard to use because they don’t have handles and they’re made of metal that can be slippery when wet.
3. Spider strainer
A kitchen spider strainer is a tool that allows you to scoop up food scraps, peels, and other bits that would otherwise stay at the bottom of a pot or pan.
They’re often made of stainless steel, but some are also available in other materials such as silicone and plastic.
The strainer has a handle attached to its center and side, allowing you to easily scoop up the food waste and place it in a trash bin.
The advantages of using a kitchen spider strainer include that it’s easy to use. All you have to do is set it over your pot of broth and scoop up food waste.
It keeps your sink clean by preventing large pieces of food from clogging up the drain while also preventing small pieces from going down the drain and causing clogs later on.
It also helps remove large objects from your broth such as bones and vegetables.
Think of it as a big giant spoon with holes in it. You get to scoop out all the solid things and leave behind the liquid.
The main disadvantage of using this type of strainer is that it can be difficult to clean Especially if you compare it to a spoon.
Some spider strainers have handles made of wood or sometimes start to change color and get old.
Also, some parts of these products are usually made out of wood, plastic, or silicone, which aren’t as easy to clean as metal or stainless steel.
4. Dumpling strainer
There are tons of different types of strainers out there, and a dumpling strainer is one that you have probably seen before.
This is also closely related to a spider strainer.
These are made of steel and are a small, round basket that is attached to a long handle and that is used to remove foods from cooking liquids.
These are great for using to pick up, you guessed it, dumplings.
These strainers are not used for pouring food out into to remove the liquid, but rather to remove the food from the liquid while leaving the liquid in the pan for later use.
These are easy to use, they are easy to store and clean, and they can be used for nearly anything that you might have in mind.
5. Tea strainers
Tea strainers are small mesh bags used to hold tea leaves as you brew them. They’re also called tea balls.
They’re often made of stainless steel, but they can be made of any material that’s strong enough to hold its shape and withstand heat.
Tea strainers allow you to steep tea leaves in hot water without having to remove them from the water.
This allows for a more even extraction of flavor from the leaves, resulting in a more flavorful cup of tea.
The strainer prevents loose leaves from getting into your cup and keeps them contained inside the strainer so they don’t get into your mouth when drinking your tea.
It also keeps small particles from blocking up the spout on your teapot so you can easily pour yourself a fresh cup after brewing is done.
The bad thing about tea strainers is that they are difficult to clean since they have many small holes that can hold onto dust and other particles easily.
This can make it harder to sanitize them completely between uses or during cleaning sessions.
A tamis can also be called a drum sieve.
These are used for pushing food through the sieve to help make a very smooth puree and to help ensure that the food you are sending through it is complete without any sort of lumps or bumps.
These are called “drum sieves” because they look like little snare drums. They are metal rings with very fine mesh inside of them to send your food through them.
You can use this after the food is cooked to help make it smooth.
These are harder to clean than some other options as they do have a very fine mesh, they are not going to be like the dumpling strainer where you can put it in the dishwasher and just go.
These can become deformed if you put them in the dishwasher so you are going to need to wash them by hand. They are great if you want a very smooth result.
7. Potato ricer
A potato ricer looks a bit like a huge garlic press or manual juicer.
They are made of two parts, the top handle that has the press, the bottom handle that has the bowl, and the holes where the food is pressed through.
The food is cooked, placed in the bowl, then the top handle comes down and the press forces the food through the holes in the bottom handle.
These are great for getting a very uniform mash of vegetables and potatoes. You can also use them to mash things like garlic.
They are not great for juicing fruits and they can be tricky to clean. If you get a metal potato ricer, you are going to have something that is very durable and that is going to last for years to come.
These are small, compact, and easy to store if you are looking to get one and put it in the drawer until you are ready to use it again.
8. food mill
A food mill is another great strainer that you can use.
It is more of a manual masher than a strainer, and it is not going to be something that you would use to drain off the liquid, but rather something that you would use to get a uniform consistency of the food that you are passing through it.
There are a couple of different types of mills you can use. There are mills where you can use a turn handle to push the food through, or you can use a ricer that has a squeeze handle.
Most mills have a drum or a metal and a handle that you turn that presses the food down through the metal mesh that is located at the center of the ricer.
You put the food into the top of the mill and then turn the handle. There is a metal blade that rotates when the handle is turned that presses the food down through the strainer and makes it smooth.
These are very difficult to keep clean. Since they do have so many moving parts, you are going to want to either clean them very carefully, or you are going to want to find a model that comes apart so that you can take it apart and clean it properly.
9. Cocktail strainers
The last type of strainer you might be interested in is a cocktail strainer.
These are very small, they consist of a flat plate that is attached to a handle and that has what looks like a spring around the edge of the plate.
The plate has holes in it to allow the liquid to pass through but to keep any solids that are present from passing through.
These are often small, small enough to fit on the rim of a glass that you would have a cocktail in. These are small, durable, and easy to clean.
They can also be used to help strain canned foods, strain cocktails, and more.
They are not going to be great for larger jobs, but they are great if you have canned food you need to strain.
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