Single use tools are forbidden in my kitchen. Garlic peeler? No way, just smash it with a knife. Ice cream scoop? A big spoon will do just fine. Oh, but the French press breaks the rule. When it's not filled with fresh coffee it just sits there, taking up space. Just how many other uses can a French press handle? As it turns out, far more than I realized.
The French press is a damn well designed tool. Its large glass vessel can handle the hottest of liquids, and its micro fine strainer sorts out pesky solids. So why do we forget about it for all non-coffee tasks?
• Make Tea - Yes, a no-brainer here. Fill the French press with tea bags, or even better, loose leaf tea, and proceed as usual.
• Froth Milk - Add a bit of milk and pump the plunger up and down (gently) - the milk will froth up in no time. And even make whipped cream!
• Rinse Quinoa - I have come to dread rinsing quinoa because those tiny little grains slip right through my colander. But the fine mesh of the French press solves the problem. Add water to dry quinoa, strain and pour off the water. Repeat until the water runs clear. Genius!
• Infuse Oils and Liquor - Again, the fine mesh strainer is key here, as well as the way the top fits on a French press, making it ideal to sit out while flavors infuse.
• Strain Anything - From draining the liquid off of frozen spinach to straining broth from mussels and shrimp shells, the French press is ideal. Just steer clear of very thick or bulky items that require force to strain - these might shatter the vessel.
What other ways do you use your French press?
Related: 5 Favorite French Presses
(Images: Bodum, Amazon)