A gift of fabulous Panniyoor peppercorns from Epices Roellinger pressed me into replacing my pepper mill this week. How many models from which to choose for a tool that yields a similar outcome. The decision was easy. This ratchet mill from Kuhn Rikon stands out because of its simple design. Load peppercorns, salts or spices though a wide spout then grind using a gentle back and forth motion rather than the twist of a wrist generally associated with grinding pepper. The perfect coarseness can be achieved with just a slight adjustment to a wheel on the bottom; it's clearly marked with arrows to 'fine' and 'coarse'.
Freshly ground pepper is that finishing touch that enhances so nicely a simple cream sauce for pasta, a marinade or plain steamed vegetable. It's a finer point in preparing food that we can choose to skip when rushed or take a moment - literally a moment- and enjoy the finish. Tools make a difference. If you tend to skip the freshly ground pepper - your mill is poorly designed, grimy, out of batteries, unsightly or a color that doesn't add a pop to your kitchen - consider a small investment a new mill and peppercorns. It's one little ingredient and step to stepping up your cooking.