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All questions

best mortar and pestle

I've read that the deep Thai mortars are best. Any sources?

asked by goodsensehealth about 2 years ago
6 answers 1764 views
added about 2 years ago

Any sturdy, deep, big, stone mortar and pestle is a great choice! There are dozens of cultures that use them; the styles may differ slightly, but the important thing is the quality of the material and the size that you want.

added about 2 years ago

Most any that look sturdy and are heavy for their size is good. I prefer to use a molcajete as a mortar and pestle as it will season over time and make your food taste better and better.


Sarah is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added about 2 years ago

If you have a Chinatown near you, go there. It'll be significantly cheaper (and most likely better) than anything that Williams-Sonoma or the like has for you.

And pay attention to the graininess of the mortar/pestle - some of the marble ones are so smooth that the spices just move around without being crushed. The act of using a mortar and pestle involves both pounding and crushing but a slightly roughed or grooved surface helps get that going. (Note this is only slightly - it's not going to feel like sandpaper but you don't want it super-smooth).

Make sure it's big enough, the tiny ones are basically useless.

I'd have a look at something like this:


Sam is a trusted home cook.

added about 2 years ago

That's the same type I have. Cheap..about 15 bucks at the local Asian store. I'd bet shipping for that heavy thing is wild tho.

I also used it to pound chicken breasts flat sometimes. Between wax paper and using the bottom of it as the impact point..but the bottom bit is a rough and textured so it's not all that great for that but works and will tear the paper. I have a proper 'pounder' now.


June is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added about 2 years ago

I would LOVE to have a molcajete. That's what I'd recommend. Get the biggest one you can fir on your counter and let it live there.

I inherited a big brass one from my great aunt. It's very deep and has a powerful pestle, so it works really well, but if I were buying, it would surely be a molcajete.


Chris is a trusted source on General Cooking

added about 2 years ago

Here's a link to the last time the Hotline discussed this ever-interesting topic: