Mortar and pestle

Mortar and pestle

Heavy, often marble, utensil with a smooth round bowl and a heavy club-shaped handheld tool used to pound, grind and cream ingredients into a purée or paste.

The price varies depending on the material and size. A small mortar with accompanying pestle in wood or stone will cost 3–5 euros, while larger sets in granite or ceramic will can cost more than 30 euros. Most models have a smooth surface for easy cleaning and are also dishwasher-safe.

A good number of spice blends, particularly for Indian dishes, are prepared this way. A mortar and pestle is also essential for other preparations, such as pesto, pistou, and aïoli.

Place the ingredients or spices in the bottom of the mortar, then pound or grind with the pestle until they are reduced to a powder or paste, as required.
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