Depending on what you are grinding/crushing, wisely choose your choice of mortar and pestle for the job at hand. Most are made from marble, granite stone, wood and bamboo; as well as ranging in size and weight. With wood and bamboo, make sure that the glues and finishes used are all natural (non-toxic). Steer clear of ceramic and pottery mortars and pestles as the glazes used have toxic ingredients.
Seeing as Bamboo is a renewable plant, resists mould and is 16% harder than maple, I thought this Bamboo Mortar and Pestle, on Amazon, would make a great gift for any occasion. Granite Stone Mortar and Pestle available on Amazon too.
History of Mortar and Pestles
Mortars and pestles have been around for thousands of years but the exact date and origin have yet to be discovered. Archaeologists are still digging up these ancient artifacts all over the globe. These geological finds have uncovered what primitive mortars and pestles were made from. Each cultures mortar and pestle differed as they could only craft theirs out of the natural materials that were available to them.
Over time, mortars and pestles were replaced by food processors and blenders. Now they are making a come-back. Cooks and herbalists of our time are starting to realize that the ‘mod-cons’ of today don’t necessarily make our lives any easier or help make the food taste any better. On the contrary! In using a mortar and pestle, nutritional properties are not lost when grinding/crushing herbs, grains, spices and nuts etc. The best flavors are released. Other conventional methods such as electric mixers, blenders and choppers create heat from excessive movement which destroys most of the nutrients and the flavors are lost.
Cleaning Mortar and Pestle
Use mild detergent, rinse well and dry with a clean cloth. Leave out on the bench to dry thoroughly.
Tip: Always use the same mortar and pestle for food preparation. Gradually add ingredients while grinding/crushing.
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