There is a gradual but steady decline in the importance of having to prepare one’s own meals. As your schedule becomes more hectic and ready-made or takeaway items become more convenient, you find yourself devoting less time and energy to the kitchen.
It’s only reasonable to avoid wasting money on a bunch of unused kitchen gadgets that will just take up space. Yet, if you are like me, you feel dissatisfied when you develop a taste for grilled cheese, and you can’t create one because you don’t have a grater.
However, there is no need for alarm. If you don’t have a grater but still want to grind potatoes, carrots, or cheese, we’ve got you covered.
Here are a few ways to learn how to grate without a grater. Let’s begin immediately.
Simple Steps to Take When You Don’t Have a Grater: How to Grate without a Grater
The following are various alternatives to using a grater.
Use Your Food Processor
If you don’t need the exact texture that a grater provides, then by all means use your food processor to finely mince your vegetables or cheese.
The use of a food processor does have some drawbacks, though, as the vegetables are squashed and release some of their moisture. The time savings here are substantial if you aren’t planning on using the vegetables in a fresh salad or slaw.
It’s the quickest way to have your food shredded, but you might not have a food processor or be willing to clean the cheese from the crevices. Whatever the case may be, you have your choice of the following methods.
Knife and Chopping Board
Using a knife to make thin slices of a vegetable or cheese is one of the oldest kitchen hacks around. A decent, sharp kitchen knife and a chopping board or other flat cutting surface are all that’s required to carry this out.
If you want to grate anything round, you should cut it in half lengthwise to create two pieces with flat surfaces.
Lay down a piece on the flat side, so it doesn’t roll
Use your knife to cut the shortest and thinnest piece you can off one of the corners at a 45-degree angle.
Start your knife slow and steady and keep shaving off slices as thin as you can; continue doing so until there isn’t enough material for you to shave off.
Gather together groups of five or six shaved pieces and arrange them flat.
Cut the meat into long, vertical slices with a knife; if the slices are too long, cut them in half lengthwise.
Have fun with your freshly grated food.
This approach may be laborious, but it always produces reliable results. If you’re interested in honing your knife skills, you’ll get a leg up on the competition.
Fragment the Cream Cheese.
If you wish to shred a soft, young cheese like a fresh gouda or some fetta, crushing it into your hands will give you practically the same result.
But before doing so, remember to wash your hands carefully and dry them out well. Then, slice off as much as you need to make a cheese block, and use both hands to roll the block under pressure, breaking the cheese into finer crumbs.
Also, if the cheese is getting too mushy to crumble, you can take off little bits instead. If some chunks are too significant, just re-tear them, and you will have finely chopped cheese.
Use a Fork
This method works well when you need to grate some spices into your cuisine, such ginger or garlic. You can also do this with a little spoon, but the fork works better.
You should peel a ginger bulb or a garlic head in the same way. Then, use the chisel-like ends of your fork’s prongs to pulverize the spice. In order to get the most out of your spoon, make sure you use the tip. It will get you a texture comparable to that you obtain from using a garlic press.
But when you are in a pinch, it is a terrific way to sidestep owning a grater or a press.
Grind Crumbly Cheese against Itself
If you want to grate a dairy product that’s already rather crumbly and low in moisture, such as parmesan or semi-hardened ricotta, you can use friction to your advantage.
Cut the cheese into two equal blocks and rub them together, applying mild pressure from either side with your hands. The grainy surface of the cheese will produce friction, and the cheese should fall apart.
And if you have a firm rind from past cheese blocks, you can rub your cheese against that, and it should work just as well.
Method: Peel and Cut
This technique, as the name implies, calls for a vegetable peeler and a sharp knife. If you are utilizing this technique for cheese, make sure that it is a hard cheese that you can shave using a peeler.
Use the peeler to scrape away the outer skin or dirty pieces on your veggie.
Hold the peeler firmly and use long, confident strokes to scrape away at your product
Lay all of the shaved pieces on the chopping board and spread them out evenly
Place the tip of your knife lightly on the cutting board. Do this while floating at an angle with your hands on the grip.
Lightly press the top of the knife into the palm of your free hand to sharpen it.
Cut down and lift using a seesaw like motion and go around the chopping board, always cutting and lifting
Cut into strips, they resemble the grated ones you’d get from a wide blade grater.
Learn to Fabricate Your Own Grater
If you want to have a more permanent solution to your grating demands, then take a little time to construct yourself a great DIY grater with household objects.
Learn to Fabricate Your Own Grater
For this, you will need the following items:
A can opener
An abandoned soda can
An effective and durable screwdriver
Sanding paper (optional) (optional)
First, with the help of the can opener, take the top off the Coke can.
The second step is to thoroughly clean the can and let it dry before proceeding.
In the third step, you’ll need a screwdriver whose head is as wide as the grater’s cutting surface. Using a smaller screwdriver is preferable.
Step 4: On one side of the can, poke a few holes, maintaining a column and row pattern, as far apart as you need them to be.
Step 5: Make sure that you leave plenty of room behind the holey face to grab the can without harming yourself.
Using the screwdriver, insert the screws into the holes (Step 6). Then pull down and toward you a little, so the metal is twisted out from the perforations outward. The outward-facing metal components will operate as your blades.
Step 7: Sand the holey side of the can lightly and carefully, working your way up from the bottom. Don’t use too much pressure since you can damage yourself.
Step 8: Wipe away any loose metal debris and let the item dry upside down for a few hours.
Step 9: Now that you have a flawless handheld grater, you can shred anything you want with it.
Note: Don’t grate anything that may be acidic as it might react with the metal container.
Knowing how to grate without a grater opens up a world of previously inaccessible dishes. These methods may not be as effective as some expensive but necessary kitchen equipment, but they will get the job done.