No-fuss biscuit recipes often instruct cooks to cut dough rounds with an empty tin can or inverted juice glass. Do you really need to buy a special set of cutters for the job? We gathered eight sets of round cutters as well as some soup cans and juice glasses and stamped out rounds of biscuit, pastry, and cookie dough.
The cans and glasses did fine with basic biscuit dough and cookies, although our choice of sizes was limited. But when we tackled more delicate doughs—puff pastry and our Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits—these makeshift cutters produced rounds with pinched edges that rose unevenly. Blunt edges were a problem, as was air trapped inside the cylinder. Among the real cutters, the model that featured curved handles made it difficult to exert even pressure. The double-edged contestant required testers to press down firmly on whichever cutting edge was not in use. Ouch! Two flashy imports came with prices to match ($57 and $107). Both performed flawlessly in our tests, but so did a set that sold for just $15.
The nonslip grip and narrow, straight blade let testers remove the smallest bones with precision and complete comfort. Perfectly balanced with enough flexibility to maneuver around tight joints. The low price was a bonus.
Hefty in weight, this knife was a solid performer when removing poultry bones, and the handle was easy to grip, even when covered in chicken fat. Piercing silver skin was a challenge since the tip wasn’t sharp enough and the long narrow blade produced slightly jagged cuts.
|Recommended with Reservations|
The sharp tip performed well when removing silver skin, but it was too flexible when maneuvering around poultry joints, leaving testers feeling a lack of control. The heavy handle was slightly unbalanced and became slippery once covered in poultry fat.
Designed to replicate a samurai blade, this expensive knife was a disappointment. It struggled to pierce the silver skin, although long cuts were smooth and even. Minimal flexibility and extreme curve got in the way when maneuvering around joints. The smooth handle was hard to grip and slippery.
The large, cumbersome handle reminded testers of an outdoors knife for fishing and hunting. The blade was too wide to maneuver around joints and it struggled to pierce silver skin. Unlike other knives, this boning knife could only slice in one direction, making intricate cuts around joints difficult.
The blade was so flexible it led to erratic cuttings; testers said the knife was hard to control. The blade was not sturdy enough to maneuver around joints and the lightweight handle felt flimsy and unbalanced.
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