I bought a mandoline a few months ago, but the instruction sheet was super vague, and I couldn’t actually figure out how the thing worked. After a completely failed attempt to make super-thin potato slices, I boxed it back up and stashed it back in the cabinet.
Lucky for me, wrangling the mandoline worked out much better this time. Turns out that when I originally took the mandoline out of the box and tried it out, I neglected to turn the little crank on the underside to open up a space between the blade and the main part of the machine…which pretty much defeats the purpose of having a blade at all. Once I figured that out, I was all set to slice!
I had a little bit of trouble turning the little wheel on the back that unlocks the blade (for switching between straight and serrated blades). Solution? Salad tongs!
Total MacGuyver move here.
My first mandoline-d food was a pretty red pear. The whole blade thing makes me a wee bit nervous, so I went really slowly, but there’s a handle/guard thinger that I’ll use for small foods or close slicing.
Within seconds, I had a nice little pile of wicked thin pear slices. The mandoline works!
Another lucky coincidence? This month’s Martha Stewart Living has a Caramel Pear Terrine recipe on page 44 (or snag it on her website, here).
And it just so happens to require mandoline-sliced pears. Which I’m pretty much a rockstar at now. Now I just have to find a charlotte mold…